On 20th September, our Vice Chancellor, Sarath Chanrajeewa, look at this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DkUEIk7qt2E) who was the driving force and great supporter of everyone who worked hard to make our university being a home to research and constantly improved teaching, was removed from his post without explanation.
We, that is the academic staff of UVPA, are sad about this unjust arbitrary action by the secretary to the president, not only because our daily work in the university is endangered but also that our newly won reputation as a university with great research and creative possibilities is at stake. The VC’s outstanding efforts in support of many renown scholars who came to attend our last big Symposium in 2018, on which occasion we could start a wonderful discourse on problems regarding research in the fields of visual and performing arts and the necessary connections to institutions and persons outside Sri Lanka may suffer from this hasty and unclear decision. To illustrate the case: Our current situation is so difficult that we had to cancel last second an upcoming arts camp in the centre of Colombo since we do not have the man power to work it out and cannot ensure the security of all national and international participants. This arts camp should have given a sign to everyone that Sri Lanka stands together and fights for justice and diversity. The arts could have had such an impact that many people could have been mobilised and join in the university’s work for the wider community. Unfortunately, cancelling this event may carry a very negative signal that is resonating with some actual problems of governance. Looking at what happened in the past few months in Sri Lanka, this situation, caused through pure political manipulation in order to keep intellectual changes at a low pace, is hard to bear.
We ask you, therefore, for your kind support. In the short time since it happened, we were thinking about this and if it is appropriate to take this issue so far. Finally, we decided, it is very important that you help us and that you agree on making your answer public. Please, sign this petition, and give your feedback, you can also write in a simple email about your experiences as a participant of the last UVPA symposium, your encounters with students and staff, and your opinion about the current situation/ As academic staff, we fully support the reappointment of our VC. You can send this email directly to the VC (firstname.lastname@example.org) and CC to an external supporter (email@example.com) who is just a peripheral outsider understanding the current situation and who borrows their email contact. This text was written by academic staff of UVPA. It is not important how much you write, it is, nevertheless, very urgent that you react. We wish that it will contribute to get our VC back to the university and to continue our university development with fruitful collaborations, creativity, and daily improvements.
Best regards and many thanks,
Academic staff of UVPA
The Reappointment of Sarath Chandrajeewa as VC of UVPA, Colombo petition to President of Sri Lanka was written by Gisa Jaehnichen and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.