Sagala Ratnayaka

From TobaccoUnmasked


Image 1: Minister Sagala Ratnayaka[1]

Sagala Gajendra Ratnayaka was born on 27th February 1968.[2] He is a politician representing the United National Party (UNP), one of the two prominent political parties in Sri Lanka and the ruling political party from 2015 to 2019. His occupation is stated as “land proprietor” under the profiles of Parliament Members.[3]

He was elected to parliament in the year 2000 representing Deniyaya electorate in Matara district, a District in southern Sri Lanka.[4] [5] As of November 2019, he was the Chief of Staff of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s office and the Minister of Ports and Shipping and Southern Development.[6][7][8] [9]

Ratnayaka completed his secondary education at Royal College, Colombo. He graduated with a degree in Business Administration Studies at Lewis & Clark College, Portland in 1993.[8][5][10][2] He worked as the Credit Operations Manager at HSBC from August 1994 to April 1999 and Financial Analyst at Central Finance Company Limited from August 1993 to July 1994.[8][10]

Links to the Tobacco Industry

He worked as the Credit Operations Manager at HSBC which is among the top 20 investors of Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC (CTC).[11] Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC (CTC) is the British American Tobacco (BAT) subsidiary holding monopoly on tobacco manufacturing and sales in Sri Lanka. Please see the relevant pages for details.

Political/Government Positions Held

  • Member of the Southern Provincial Council - August 1999 to October 2000[3][4]
  • Deputy Minister of Power and Energy – 2002 to 2004[5]
  • Member of Parliament – September 2015 to date[8]
  • Minister of Law and Order – November 2015 to February 2018[8]
  • Chief of the staff of Prime Minister’s Office – February 2015 to November 2019[8]
  • Minister of Youth Affairs, Project Management and Southern Development – February 2018 to October 2018 [8]
  • Minister of Ports, Shipping and Southern Development – October 2018 to November 2019[8]

Tobacco Related Activities

Attending a CTC Event to Distribute “Essential Goods” in Pitabaddara

Minister Ratnayake attended a function to distribute “essential goods” for 200 home gardening families under Sustainable Agriculture Development Programme (SADP) by the Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC (CTC) in Pitabaddara Divisional Secretariat area, Matara (Image 2).[12]

Sustainable Agriculture Development Programme (SADP) is the main corporate social investment (CSI) activity of the Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC (CTC). Please refer to our page Sustainable Agriculture Development Programme (SADP) for more details.

Image 2: Minister’s address at the event covered by national media[12]

Attending a Business Forum organized by the League of Multinational Corporates (LMNC)

Minister Ratnayake attended a business forum on 28th September 2018 at The Blue, Hilton Colombo organized by the League of Multinational Corporates (LMNC) an association linked with the tobacco industry (Image 3).[13][14] Please refer to our page League of Multinational Corporates (LMNC) for more details.

Image 3: Minister Sagala Ratnayaka attending the event “League of Multinational Corporates (LMNC)”. Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC (CTC) and LMNC Chairman Michael Koest, Keynote speaker of the event Jim Lawless, Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva and Minister Harin Fernando are also in the picture.[13]

Letter from Prime Minister’s Office to promote Tobacco Cultivation

On 16th August 2017, Prime Minister has had a discussion as per a request from All Ceylon Cigarette Tobacco Barn Owners' Association, regarding the issues of tobacco farming. As a result of the meeting, a letter has been sent from Prime Minister’s office to authorised bodies containing matters discussed and conclusions made at the meeting. The letter stated that relevant government officials should not oppose tobacco farming as it is not a banned crop yet (Image 4). Sagala Rathanayaka was the Chief-of-Staff of the Prime Minister’s office during this period.

Image 4: Letter from Prime Minister’s office [15]

Tobacco Unmasked Resources

Other relevant TobaccoUnmasked pages

The local language translations



  1. M Bandara and I Upeksha. Doing the Right Thing, Business Today. February 2016, accessed March 2019
  2. 2.0 2.1 Sagala Ratnayaka, undated, accessed March 2019
  3. 3.0 3.1 Parliament of Sri Lanka. Hon. SagalaRatnayaka, M.P., undated, accessed March 2019
  4. 4.0 4.1 Business Today. Doing the Right Thing, February 2016, accessed March 2019
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Prabook. SagalaRatnayaka, undated, accessed March 2019
  6. Prime Minister’s office, Core Team, 21st May 2018, accessed March 2019
  7. Official website of the office of the Cabinet Ministers - Sri Lanka. Office of the Cabinet of Ministers - Sri Lanka, undated, accessed March 2019
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 Sagala Ratnayake. Facebook profile, Facebook, undated, accessed March 2019
  9. PMD NEWS- President’s Media Division, CABINET MINISTERS, undated, accessed March 2019
  10. 10.0 10.1 Lewis & Clark. Sagala Ratnayaka ‘93 represents district in Sri Lankan Parliament, 8 October 2001, accessed March 2019
  11. Ceylon Tobacco Company PLC. Annual Report 2017, 2018, accessed March 2019
  12. 12.0 12.1 Ada Derana Prime Time News Bulletin 06.55 pm - 2017.11.12, 12th November 2017, accessed March 2019
  13. 13.0 13.1 Mirror Business. ‘League of Multinational Corporates’ Launched, 01 October 2018, accessed March 2019
  14. Daily FT. MNC speak up, 01 October 2018, accessed March 2019
  15. PASC Lakmal, Discussion on issues related to tobacco farming, 17th August 2017, accessed March 2019