EC member Hoole defends daughter following accusations

National Election Commission member Ratnajeevan H. Hoole has defended his daughter Elilini Hoole after some local media institutions and social media attacked her.

In an email to Colombo Gazette, Hoole said that Elilini returned to Sri Lanka recently after paying for the air fare and was later quarantined at a hotel for which the bill was also paid by her.

Elilini was reading for her doctoral degree at Jesus College, Cambridge when she returned to Sri Lanka.

“She landed on 4 May. On landing she had to stand in line close to others for 6 hours and undergo fumigation. She commented to friends on Instagram that she had been sandwiched like sardines and fumigated. The intellectual level of comments is such that the commenters thought she was complaining against the airline not serving her smoked salmon. Someone said they had google-translated fumigation and salmon,” Hoole said.

Hoole said that after completing her two-week quarantine process at a local hotel she was released after a negative COVID-test and paying a hotel bill for Rs. 175,000.

“Elilini was never told to self-quarantine. On the contrary, the certificate signed by Lieut. Gen. de Silva and Dr. Anil Jasinghe said she underwent the necessary quarantine process,” Hoole said.

Hoole said that as Elilini had been fully cleared he took her to his office from the hotel where he had work.

However, he was later accused in the media by the Health Ministry of lack of ethics for having gone to office with his daughter instead of placing her in quarantine at home for another 14 days.

“Dr. Jasinghe and Liet. General de Silva have signed Elilini’s certificate with no mention of self-quarantining. They had also forgotten to complete the certificate with dates, making it worthless. Ten years from now with another COVID-19 outbreak (God forbid!) she can use the certificate to say she has been cleared,” Hoole said.

Hoole insisted that his daughter needed no self-quarantine according to the Health Ministry website.

“Lack of professionalism is an ethics violation. So also is using ungrammatical language that people cannot understand. Untruthful claims that she had been instructed to self-quarantine when released also shows a lack of professional ethics,” Hoole said.

Hoole said that Elilini’s certificate completely cleared her and that she underwent the necessary quarantine process.

“Hence when going to work, I took Elilini with me. It triggered unnecessary, horrible panic – a sad state for a Commission that needs balanced, rational thinking,” he said.

Hoole said that the whole office was sprayed after his daughter left and that was unnecessary.

He also said that the Election Commission at its meeting of 20 May took sad note of the defamation of a Commission Member and resolved to explain the correct situation to the media and public. (Colombo Gazette)

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