Major General A P de Z Wickramaratne RWP ndu psc
Commandant – Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force
Major General Agampodi Piyal de Zoysa Wickramaratne RWP ndu psc assumed duties as Commandant of the Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force on 06 December 2017.
He was born on 3 September 1963. He joined the Sri Lanka Army as an Officer Cadet on 27 April 1983 and received basic training at the Sri Lanka Military Academy. He was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant on 19 April 1985 and was posted to Sri Lanka Sinha Regiment as his first choice was to join the Infantry.
Major General Wickramaratne received his school education at Richmond College Galle, one of the leading schools in Sri Lanka and he had passed the General Certificate of Education (Ordinary Level) and then opted to join the Sri Lanka Army. He was an all-round sportsman and excelled at swimming while winning a number of National events. He was adjudged the Champion at the National Pentathlon Swimming Championship in year 1982. In his Military education, he was graduated at the Sri Lanka Army Command and Staff College having followed the Army Command and Staff Course Number One in year 1998. He was also graduated from the prestigious National Defence University in China in year 2013.
During his military career, he has gained a wealth of experience by attending a large number of local and overseas courses and seminars which include a local seminar on Socio Economic and Legal Aspects of Peacekeeping Operations. Major General Wickramaratne also attended the “Non Lethal Weapons Seminar” conducted in Sri Lanka by the US Forces. He also participated in the Military Tactical Warfare Simulation Exercises held in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh conducted by the US Marines and later he was selected to perform as the Exercise Coordinator Sri Lanka Army for the Military Tactical Warfare Simulation Exercise held in Sri Lanka in year 2004, conducted by the US Marines during which he received a valuable exposure in actively taking part in combined staff planning. He also followed the Joint Forces Staff College course in Norfolk, Virginia, USA in year 2005. He is qualified in Glider Flying after successfully completing a Glider Flying and Soaring Course in Pakistan. Major General Wickramaratne has also excelled in the field of sports in the Army and is a recipient of ‘Regimental Colours’ in swimming.
Major General Wickramaratne, during his Military career has served in all the operational areas of North and East in Sri Lanka and held many key appointments in the Infantry Battalion such as Intelligence Officer, Adjutant, Company Commander, Battalion Second in Command and Commanding Officer. He has also gained a wealth of experience by serving as a Battalion Commander in the Airmobile Brigade of the Sri Lanka Army during offensive operations. Major General Wickramaratne had actively taken part in a number of major offensive operations conducted by the Sri Lanka Army during the past thirty years, both as a Field Commander and an Operations Staff Officer. Major General Wickramaratne had served as the Commander 231 Brigade at Punani under 23 Division and Security Forces Headquarters (East) in the Eastern Theatre of Operations from April 2005 to February 2006. He had actively taken part in the triumphantly concluded victorious Wanni Humanitarian Operations as the Deputy General Officer Commanding 53 Division from December 2007 to August 2008 and as the General Officer Commanding of the 61 Division from September 2008 to July 2009.He also commanded the Mechanized Infantry Brigade for a short period from May to July 2008. He commanded the 51 Division, Jaffna from September 2011 to August 2012 and 22 Division, Trincomalee from August 2013 to May 2014, in undertaking nation building tasks in support of the national plan during the post conflict situation. Major General Wickramaratne has been honoured with the Gallantry Award “Rana Wickrama Padakkama” for his bravery in the face of the enemy.
Major General Wickramaratne has served as an Instructor at the Combat Training School and also has served in different capacities as Operations Staff Officers such as Brigade Major, General Staff Officer Grade One and Colonel General Staff, at Brigade, Division and Formation Headquarters where he has gained a wealth of experience in planning and preparation of Operation Orders/Instructions and Contingency Plans. He has also served as Colonel General Staff at the Joint Operations Headquarters where he gained a profuse experience in planning of Disaster Relief Operations during Post Tsunami Era by working in close liaison with different Embassies/High Commissions and Foreign/Local Non Governmental Organizations. Major General Wickramaratne served as the Major General General Staff at the Security Forces Headquarters (Wanni) from February 2010 to August 2011, during the most challenging era of the post conflict situation in undertaking the nation building tasks to support the national plan, where he could gain a wealth of experience in the fields of demining, administering of Internally Displaced Persons, reconstruction, resettlement, rehabilitation and re-integration of ex-combatants, and reconciliation. He had also served as a Directing Staff at the Army Command and Staff College as well as at the Defence Services Command and Staff College from February 2006 to December 2007.
Major General Wickramaratne served at 66 Division Pooneryn under Security Forces Headquarters (Kilinochchi) as General Officer Commanding, from May 2014 till mid 2016. Adding to his undeterred career record, the Senior Officer held the Director General General Staff designation with eminent PSO status from 05 September 2016 till 30 November 2017 at the Army Headquarters overseeing the overarching general operational, training, planning,staff duties,military intelligence and media coordination matters of the Army. Concurrently, Major General Wickramaratne led the largest regiment of the Sri Lanka Army, Sri Lanka National Guard acting as its Colonel of the Regiment from 02 October 2016 to 03 December 2017. As the latest appointment, he took over the command of the Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force on 06 December 2017.
Major General Wickramaratne is married and blessed with three children, a daughter and two sons.