Taking advantage of the country’s Right to Information Act, the Airline Pilots Guild of Sri Lanka have written to SriLankan Airlines Information Officer Shiara Sellamuttu seeking full disclosure to several information pertaining to the salaries of CEO Suren Ratwatte, Head of Human Resources Pradeepa Kekulawla, Chief Commercial Officer Siva Ramachandran, besides information on the botched Pakistan International Airline wet lease deal and the cost incurred to train CEO Ratwatte to fly the Airbus 320 aircraft.
Sellamuttu in her reply to the Pilots Guild letter dated the 29th of June 2017 confirmed a day later that the requested information will be furnished in 14 days’ time.Management Pilots During Better Times – Capt. Pujith Jayakody, Capt. Renuke Senanayake, Head of Flight Operations Capt. Rajind Ranatunga and CEO Capt. Suren Ratwatte
Meanwhile Chairman Ajith Dias, who had earlier ordered the airline’s Crew Rostering Department be brought under the Human Resources Department effective the 1st of July 2017, reversed his decision after a meeting that was held last Tuesday between the Head of Flight Operations Capt. Rajind Ranatunga and the airline’s Senior Management Team. This was after the airline’s Board of Directors and Chairman Ajith Dias decided to virtually gift CEO Ratwatte a flying scholarship to follow a full Airbus 320 conversion course which cost the tax payer around US $ 50,000.
Chairman Dias’ feeble attempt in making this change initially was exposed when CEO Ratwatte’s Ground School and Simulator Training was found to be rigged by Instructor Pilots handpicked to specifically conduct his training. Besides Captains Pujitha Jayakody Jnr and Rakhita Wijeratne visiting the office of the CEO at the World Trade Center to conduct personal classes in his plush office, Simulator Instructor Pilot Capt. Mohan Pragasam’s failure to document the ‘tail strike’ CEO Ratwatte was involved in during his training caused serious safety concerns. SriLankan Airline’s management pilots specifically offer contracts to medically condemned and pilots well over the retirement age to conduct Ground, Simulator and Flying classes as instructors and examiners and use them to their advantage. Not wanting to compromise their sole source of income, management pilots are then easily passed despite causing serious errors at times with a mild slap on their wrists. This was exposed by Colombo Telegraph after the CEO’s Secretary contacted the airline’s Crew Scheduling Manager Nalaka de Zoysa who ordered that the scheduled Line Flying Instructor Capt. Amjath Murad Shafeek be replaced by Capt. Ranga Amadoru who CEO Ratwatte had also handpicked to have him cleared to fly the A320 aircraft. It was later revealed that CEO Ratwatte was reluctant in flying with Instructor Pilot Capt. Amjath Murad Shafeek, a no nonsense check pilot who would even fail the CEO if his check flight was below par.
After Colombo Telegraph’s expose, CEO Ratwatte subsequently requested for annual leave midway through his training, stating he was stressed and wished to visit Melbourne Australia in order to spend time with his family. However it was noted that the CEO’s request was made after he was informed that he had been re-scheduled to complete two Line Flying Checks with Capt. Amjath Murad Shafeek on the 9th of July 2017 to Trichy and 12th of July 2017 to Trivandrum.