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CA Sri Lanka honours four eminent senior chartered accountants for their outstanding contribution

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA Sri Lanka) recently paid a glowing tribute to four eminent Chartered Accountants, in appreciation of their outstanding contribution to the accounting profession and society.

At a ceremony held at Waters Edge Battaramulla, Dr. Gamini Christopher Bernard Wijeyesinghe was decorated with the award, Lifetime Achievement 2012.  With a rich tradition of integrity ethical conduct and a high degree of professionalism, he enriched the profession and the business world.

The Institute also honoured Mr. Hemaka Amarasuriya, Mr. Augustine Thavarajan Benedict and Mr. Viswanathar Kailasapillai by inducting them to the CA Sri Lanka Hall of Fame in recognition of their services to the profession and the public in an illustrious career spanning decades in both the private and public sectors in the country.

Dr. Wijeyesinghe, a Past President of CA Sri Lanka and a former precedent Partner of KPMG, served KPMG for almost fifty years before his retirement in 2001.  Whilst working as a partner, he also served on the Asia Pacific Regional Board of KPMG.  He was instrumental in initiating the formation of the South Asian Federation of Accountants and also served on the directorate of many public companies and also served as a member of the main committee of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. He was a Council member of the Employees Federation of Ceylon, Founder member of the Securities and Exchange Commission and a Member of the Board of Management of the Postgraduate Institute of Management.

Among the three chartered accountants inducted to the CA Sri Lanka Hall of Fame, Mr. Hemaka Amarasuriya, is as an illustrious member of the profession who has left an indelible mark both on the profession and the corporate world.

He joined Singer Group of Companies in 1973 as an Administrative Accountant and rose to the position of Chairman.  As Chairman, he was responsible for ensuring that the Singer Group was ranked amongst LMD’s top twenty corporates for an unbroken spell of twenty years.  Under his stewardship Singer earned the title “Most Powerful Brand in Sri Lanka” for five consecutive years and was also voted the “Most Popular Brand in Sri Lanka” for seven continuous years.   He served on the directorates of several listed and private companies, including Bata Shoe Co Ceylon Ltd., NDB Bank, Singer India Ltd., NDB Capital-Bangladesh, C.W. Mackie PLC, Lanka Aluminium PLC, Acme Packaging PLC and ACL Cables PLC.

Mr. Augustine Thavarajan Benedict was inducted to the CA Sri Lanka Hall of Fame for his outstanding contribution to enhance the chartered accounting profession in the country. Kicking off his career at the Institute in 1965, he became the Director of Studies in 1967. The steps taken by him to streamline and strengthen the studies division were legendary.  He left Sri Lanka in 1973 to take up a World Bank sponsored assignment as an Advisor in Accounting to the Government of Tanzania.

Moving over to London In 1987, he worked as a Senior Lecturer with the London South Bank University and after retirement in 2005 he is working as a Senior Lecturer with London College of Accountancy.  He continues to conduct Continuing Professional Education courses, seminars and training sessions in the UK and across many countries in the world including Malaysia, Singapore, Mauritius, Bulgaria, Latvia and Uzbekistan.

Mr. Viswanathar Kailasapillai, vice president of the Institute in 1977, served a protracted period of service in the business sector. At the time he retired in 1996 as the Deputy Chairman and Group Finance Director of John Keells Holdings Ltd.

He also has served the institute as a member of the languages committee and played an active role in compiling Tamil glossaries in accounting.  He served on both Council of the Universities of Kelaniya and Post Graduate Institute of Management of the Sri Jayawardenapura University.  He is also a former Chairman of the Colombo Stock Exchange. He continues to support a number of institutions involved in religious activities and social welfare.