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IGP orders senior police officers to be partial to the President

Jan 2 (LNW) The IGP has ordered senior police officers to be partial to the President when carrying out their duties. Special sessions of meetings have been organized by the IGP to create awareness among the senior police officers about the need to act partially towards one candidate during the Presidential election. Several such meetings have been held from December 29 till the 31st in Kurunegala, Tangalle and Matara. more..

General Sarath Fonseka challenges the President to an open debate on arms allegations

Jan 2 (LT) General Sarath Fonseka has issued a challenge to President Mahinda Rajapakse for an open debate on the allegations raised on purchasing of arms during the war. The challenge has been conveyed by the spokesmen for the Gereral. The General’s challenge comes in the wake of the accusations made by a key stakeholder of the Rajapakse regime, Wimal Weerawansa. more..

'Masses will receive more relief as Gen. Fonseka’s campaign picks up momentum'

Jan 2 (LT) The government that has been alarmed due to the success of Gen. Sarath Fonseka’s election campaign is showering the masses with promises that even go beyond the budget proposals says Anura Dissanayake, co-media spokesman of Gen. Sarath Fonseka. He said, “The government, alarmed by the force of Gen. Fonseka’s election campaign is making promises that have not been included in the budget proposals and that go beyond it. more..

General pays last respects to late Minister Chandrasekaran

Jan 2 (LT) Common Presidential Candidate Gen. Sarath Fonseka paid his last respects to the body of late Minister P. Chandrasekaran. Gen. Fonseka visited Mr. Chandrasekaran’s residence at Medawelikada Road at Rajagiriya today morning to pay his last respects. The remains of minister Periyasamy Chandrasekaran were brought from his Colombo home to Parliamentary Complex this morning (Jan. 02). more..

CE orders IGP to cancel transfer of SSP Ampara

Jan 2 (LT) The Commissioner of Elections yesterday (1st) ordered the IGP to immediately cancel the transfer given to SSP Ampara J.R. Jayawardene to Killinochchi. It is said that the reason for the sudden transfer of SSP Jayawardene was due to rejecting requests made by government politicians of the area to deploy police personnel to protect cutouts and posters of presidential candidate Mahinda Rajapakse. more..

Elections Commissioner directs state media to give fair exposure to General Fonseka

Jan 2 (LT) Concerned about the massive wave of anti-General Fonseka propaganda generated round the clock by the state owned Rupavahini Corporation and the SLBC, Mr Dayananda Dissanayake, the Commissioner of Elections has directed that a fair and reasonable coverage be given to General Fonseka to respond to the allegations. The Commissioner’s move comes in response to the letter sent by more..

'Tamils, Muslims should reject both Mahinda and Sarath'

Jan 2 (TN) Tamils and Muslims should not cast their votes either to Mahinda Rajapakse or Sarath Fonseka in the presidential election so that niether of them poll more than 50% of the votes cast, as a clear message to both, Dr. Wickremabahu Karunaratne, leader of the New Left Front (NLF), contesting the forthcoming presidential election said in a press meet held Friday in Jaffna Bastian Hotel. more..

Ranil stresses need to fully implement Constitution

Jan 2 (Island) Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday emphasised the need to find solutions to political, economic and social problems of the Tamil speaking people to ensure that terrorism would not raise its head again, though the LTTE had been militarily defeated. He said: "We have to create a conducive environment where all communities could live safely and with dignity, more..

No likelihood of Vanni IDPs being settled east of A9 road

Jan 2 (TN) Sri Lanka government is actively engaged in resettling Vanni IDPs along A9 road from Oamanthai to Maangku'lam in an attempt to show the outside world that it is resettling Vanni IDPs in their own places, in view of the forthcoming presidential election, sources in Jaffna said. Resettlement in areas located east of A9 road in Vanni will not be possible in the near future, more..

Thondaman confident of Sri Lanka President`s victory

Jan 2 (LNP) Ceylon Workers` Congress (CWC) General Secretary and Youth Empowerment and Socio-Economic Development Minister Arumugan Thondaman said he was confident of President Mahinda Rajapaksa`s victory at the Presidential Election. Speaking at a press conference at his Ministry in Colombo yesterday, the Minister said the President and the CWC face the people with what they have done for them. more..

For low income earners: Massive housing project on way

Jan 2 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said the Government will implement a massive 600,000 unit housing project this year to fulfil the housing need of the low income earners in the country. The President stressed the Government could not launch a mass scale condominium project during the past four years due to the war on terrorism and reiterated that this project will solve the housing problem of the people. more..

Why not rein in private media too?

Jan 2 (DN) In the final analysis, it is the media that can give true meaning to democratic values and ensure ‘good governance’ notwithstanding the existence of even an enlightened constitution and a ‘Right to Information’ law (which we do not have!). If the media as exist at present in this country were to continue in the same vein, these measures even if introduced, to a large extent would not serve their purpose. more..

Death of Minister P. Chandrasekeran

Jan 2 (DN) Upcountry People’s Front leader and Community Development and Social Inequity Eradication Minister Periyasamy Chandrasekeran passed away after a brief illness at a private hospital yesterday morning. Born in April 16, 1957 at Talawakelle he had his early education at St. Patrick’s College, Talawakelle and Highlands College, Hatton. He lost his father at the age of 18 and more..

Silent over Wijeweera’s death, but worried over Prabhakaran’s

Jan 2 (Island) The UN was silent when the JVP leader Rohana Wijeweera was killed in cold blood. Now it is worried over the demise of terrorist leader Velupillai Prabhakaran died, NFF Leader Wimal Weerawansa said in Kandy on Tuesday (29). He was epeaking at the awards ceremony, organised by the Central Provincial Ministry of Agriculture, to honour those who excelled in home agriculture production. more..

Clean-up operation: Why spend Rs 12 mn for labourers when PCs can do it?

Jan 2 (Island) Controversy surrounds a decision to hire workers through the Police Department to remove election propaganda material, though Provincial Councils can do the clean-up operation without wasting taxpayers’ money. The Police headquarters has got over Rs. 12 million from the Elections Secretariat to hire workers for the clean-up operation during the presidential election campaign. more..

Dengue and a H1N1 could reach peak levels this year

Jan 2 (LNP) The Health Authorities yesterday warned dengue and A H1N1 would come to a peak this year claiming more victims as the combined death toll from both diseases in the past year stood at a alarming 366. There were 33, 075 cases and 533 reported cases of dengue and A H1N1 by yesterday according to the Government Epidemiology Unit (GEU) Director GEU Dr. Prabha Palihawadana warned the public to more..

CMEV questions polls chief on transfer of SSP

Jan 2 (Island) The Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV) has written to the Commissioner of Elections asking why he approved the transfer of SSP Ampara, J. R. Jayawardhana to Kilinochchi effective from yesterday. When CMEV, on being informed of the transfer, made inquiries from Police headquarters as to how they could contravene instructions by the Elections Commissioner by transferring a Police officer more..

Southern development: Farmers derive greatest benefit

Jan 2 (DN) The unprecedented development in the Southern Province would not even have been dreamt of had it not been for the tenure of office of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris said in Hambantota. He was speaking at a ceremony to distribute agricultural equipment to 750 farming families in the area recently. “The main reason why Sri Lanka was able to achieve positive growth in her economy at a time when the economy and the banking system, more..

Polls chief gets tough with Police

Jan 2 (DM) Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake exercised his powers for the first time with regard to the political victimisation of public servants yesterday by directing Police Chief Mahinda Balasuriya to stop the transfer of Superintendent J.R. Jayawardane from Ampara to Kilinochchi. The Commissioner has issued directions not to make any transfer of public servants including those in the police service during the election period. more..

'Eco-friendly decorations for election'

Jan 2 (DM) Environment and Natural Resources Minister Patali Champaka Ranawaka spoke out against the use of cutouts, plastic and polythene decorations at the presidential election yesterday addressing the media at the Central Environment Authority (CEA). "Large cutouts are made of a strong plastic material that should not be burnt as it releases cancer-causing chemicals," warned the minister. more..

Why keep a dog and bark yourself?

Jan 2 (Island) Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake has ordered the removal of election propaganda material displayed in unauthorised locations and the police have got the money for the job––Rs. 12.8 mn. But, day in and day out, we see, in public places, an ever increasing number of election posters, cutouts etc. belonging to the two main contestants in the presidential race. They seem to think that the number of votes they get will be proportionate to the number of posters they put up. more..

Archbishop, Fonseka call for inter-religious dialogue

Jan 2 (DM) Common opposition candidate General Sarath Fonseka and the Archbishop of Colombo Rt. Rev. Malcolm Ranjith yesterday discussed the possibility of starting an inter religious dialogue to resolve social issues faced by the people including up lifting spiritual values of children and ensuring co- existence of all religions and communities of the country. Bishop Malcolm Ranjith stressed the need for an inter religious dialogue when more..

UNF, JVP joint policy to form SF manifesto

Jan 2 (DM) The United National Front and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna have committed themselves to a common programme on certain issues to be implemented whatever party among them wins the next parliamentary election in the event of Opposition Common Candidate Gen. Sarath Fonseka being elected to the presidency, a spokesman said yesterday. The common minimum programme in this regard would be launched on January 7, and more..

'Sri Lanka do not need military rule and anarchy'

Jan 2 (GDI) Prof.Laksiri Fernando of the Colombo University today pointed out that if by accident Gen.Sarath Fonseka was elected, the nation would bury democracy and head towards military rule and anarchy. Addressing the "Vidwath Hamuwa" at the Ministry of Media and Information, Prof.Fernando said that the UNP and JVP would fight each other as both were now in a state of political extremism and that would lead to the burial democracy. more..

'President defeated terrorism'

Jan 2 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa had been successful in defeating terrorism which was considered indomitable. Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse said that now he has come before people to seek a mandate to win the economic war. The Defence Secretary said that four Presidents, ten governments, political parties and various Commanders of the Security Forces have failed to achieve this for 30 years. more..

UNP loses another ‘big jumbo’ as Tilak joins Rajapaksa

Jan 2 (AD) The UNP former Treasurer and Bandaragama organizer Tilak Karunaratne came out in support of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s candidature this evening during a propaganda rally at Kalutara. Mr. Karunaratne yesterday resigned from all posts he held in the UNP, including the post of Treasurer. He had reportedly cited the UNP leader’s demeaning statement on the Thoppigala victory and his description of the Sangha as a Dushseela Samagama, the UNP-SLFP-M pact and more..

'Details of conspirators will be revealed soon'

Jan 2 (DN) We will soon tell the country details about a conspiracy of certain forces that are trying to bring discredit to the country and destabilize it. These are the same forces that were behind LTTE terrorist leader Prabhakaran, Foreign Employment Promotion Minister and Government Defence Spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella told the Daily News yesterday. more..

SB wants the truth about the Sarath Fonseka’s Interview

Jan 2 (DM) UNP dissident S.B Dissanayake addressing a news briefing at the Mahaweli Centre last afternoon, said that enough damage had been done to tarnish the image of Sri Lanka and the armed forces due to an interview given by Presidential Candidate Sarath Fonseka to The Sunday Leader. He said that “who said what” was irrelevant as the statement is globally spread now. more..

Sarath Fonseka addressing the nation

Hambantota political offices of Fonseka campaign burnt down

Jan 2 (LG) A total of four propaganda offices belonging to the opposition’s common candidate General (retd.) Sarath Fonseka were put to the torch in separate incidents at Hambantota last night. The attacks which were carried out by suspected pro-government goons were carried out in the villages of Wettiya Handiya, Hungama, Ranagodamune, Barawakkumbura and Abeysekeragama all in the Hambantota district, more..

Sri Lankan presidential contender woos Tamil voters

Jan 2 (AFP) Sri Lanka's former military chief Sarath Fonseka took his presidential campaign Saturday to the ethnic heartland of the Tamil Tiger rebellion he helped crush last year. The retired four-star general, who is seen as the main challenger to President Mahinda Rajapakse in polls slated for January 26, visited the northern region of Jaffna, where he toured a historic Hindu temple and addressed a rally. more..

Pilgrims converge on Historic Nagadeepa Temple under Naval Facilitation

Jan 3 (SLN) With the lifting of road and security restrictions on the A 9 road, pilgrims in large numbers have begun to visit Nagadeepa, which has been blessed with Lord Buddha’s second visit to Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka Navy, which is tasked with providing security to the historic islet located in Northern Sri Lanka, has extended facilitation for the convenience of general public visiting one of the most revered sixteen places of Buddhist worship in the island. more..

Student victims of Embilipitiya and Trincomalee:How the state obstructs justice

Jan 3 (TC) Are we living under a State so crisis-prone that reordering it to represent all sections and provide justice for all, has become an insuperable task? Constricted by the ideology of Sinhalese hegemony (which invented its counterpart in the LTTE), its repositories, the ruling class, has seen itself regularly under siege. Organised institutional violence becomes the reflex response of such a mindset, which cannot be constrained by laws. more..

Sri Lanka to go for a massive condominium project

Jan 3 (AT) Sri Lanka is to launch a massive 600,000 unit housing project this year fulfilling the housing need of the low income households, Presidential Secretariat announced. President Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing a group vocational and technical students from the institutes coming under the Ministry of Vocational Education and Training at Temple Trees yesterday (January 01) had said that more..

Sri Lanka honors outstanding athletes

Jan 3 (Xinhua) President Mahinda Rajapakse honored three of the island nation's outstanding athletes with special mementos here Saturday. Sprinter Susanthika Jayasinghe and cricketers Sanath Jayasuriya and Muttiah Muralitharan were the recipients of the awards. The 40-year-old Jayasuriya was honored for his 20 years' dedication to cricket, including his pivotal role in Sri Lanka winning the cricket World Cup in 1996. more..

Sarath Fonseka in Jaffna: "No hard feelings on any community"

Jan 3 (TC) Presidential contender Sarath Fonseka has said Ariyalai, Muhamalai, Jaffna and Tanangkillappu High Security Zones (HSZs) will be taken off immediately and emergency rule abolished when elected, while speaking to the public in Jaffna today. He also assured to recruit locals and Tamil speaking Policeman to Tamil speaking areas and to commence building a Highway to Jaffna. more..

Fourth anniversary of the Trinco five students’ case

Jan 3 (UTHR) The end of the war, despite the huge cost in human misery among combatants and civilians, ushered in hopes of the fruits of peace. These are however marred by virulent divisions jostling behind a culture of impunity. The latter long antedate’s the present regime, to which both leading players contributed in equal measure. Yet, the country has a chance to move forward if the leaders are prepared to think beyond the short term power grab. more..

Sri Lanka’s Untapped Electorate

Jan 3 (SLNN) Hundreds of thousands of Sri Lankan citizens living in other countries are being denied their right to vote due to lack of legislation that would allow Sri Lankans living abroad to participate in the electoral process. Successive governments have continued to ignore this key voter base despite the country depending heavily on their foreign exchange remittances. “Under our current regulations, there is no possibility of giving a special facility to those living outside Sri Lanka to vote,” more..

Questionable Conduct

Jan 3 (SL) In the darkness of Sri Lanka’s semi democracy, amidst the violence, the abuses and the intimidation that constitute an average Sri Lankan election, for over a decade one man has stood out as a beacon of hope. A single honest and incorruptible civil servant has struggled against the country’s tsunami stack of election violations. He has issued countless orders condemning malpractices by all sides and more..

Netravalkar leads thumping Indian win

Jan 3 (CI) Left-arm fast bowler Saurabh Netravalkar routed Sri Lanka, taking 5 for 26 to lead India to a thumping ten-wicket win in Johannesburg. India, who won their second consecutive game, justified their decision to field by picking up early wickets. The first four Sri Lankan wickets fell for just nine runs, with Netravalkar doing the bulk of the damage. more..

Don Bosco Sri Lanka loses a great priest

Jan 3 (AT) Rev.Fr. Nicholas Cl Lukxman Neththasinghe, (54), Vice Superior, Don Bosco Salasian Vice Province of Sri Lanka succumbed to his injuries on 30th December caused by a fatal car accident at Seeduwa and his funeral takes place today (2nd) at Dankotuwa Don Bosco Grounds. Fr Neththasinghe was ordained a priest of Don Bosco Salasians Order in 1990 and within the period of 19 years as a priest in that Order, more..

STF ordered to vote for Rajapaksa

Jan 3 (SL) The Office of the Special Task Force (STF) Commandant has distributed a leaflet on December 9, 2009 calling on all STF personnel to vote for President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the forthcoming presidential election. Commanding Officer of the STF on December 11, 2009 had ordered the Senior Superintendent of Police (Personnel) to send a copy of the leaflet to every STF camp in the country. more..

Diplomats Summoned For Election Work

Jan 3 (SL) Controversy surrounds the summoning of some 14 Sri Lankan diplomats, some lodged at plush five star hotels and condominium complexes to carry out President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s presidential election campaign. The diplomats who are allegedly carrying out the President’s propaganda work include Sri Lankan Ambassador in Washington DC, Jaliya Wickramasuriya, Ambassador to Italy Hemantha Warnakulasuriya, Consul General for Toronto, Bandula Jayasekara, more..

An election haunted by the war

Jan 3 (SL) A spectre is haunting the presidential election, the spectre of the Fourth Eelam War. Not only has the election become a contest between the Commander in Chief and the Army Commander who presided over the defeat of the LTTE, turning the campaign into a running debate about who is the greater hero. It has also brought out into the open an issue the regime (and society) had consciously consigned to the mists of oblivion more..

Will this election give us ‘change we can believe in’?

Jan 3 (SL) With 22 candidates contesting the presidential elections this time around, the highest number ever in any election held so far, one would expect it to be a real nail-biter as a candidate has to receive 50% plus one vote to win the election, which with so many contenders seems a tall order. And a nail-biter it is proving to be – between just two candidates however. Current President Mahinda Rajapaksa and common candidate General Sarath Fonseka have been the obvious frontrunners more..

Claims, Counter Claims And Promises Galore

Jan 3 (SL) A little over three weeks to go for D-Day and the campaigns for the presidential election are heating up with the two front-runners making various pledges to the people. President Mahinda Rajapaksa and opposition common candidate General Sarath Fonseka have now begun making pledges even before their official election manifestos are released. In fact, General Fonseka is scheduled to release his manifesto on Thursday (7) at a ceremony at Hilton Residencies. more..

'General will get rid of the Rajapaksa circus'

Jan 3 (LB) UNP MP for Galle District Vajira Abeywardene says that Common opposition presidential candidate General Sarath Fonseka would implement all his major political pledges once elected at the upcoming polls. In an interview with LAKBIMAnEWS, MP Abeywardene emphasised that despite two major parties having ideological differences (UNP & JVP) backing the candidature of General Fonseka - more..

Hampers and promises

Jan 3 (LB) It is hilarious that the chief strategies as opposition and government party rev up their election campaigns are pocketbook gambits which are tried and tested over time ——- the goodie cart is now arriving on overdrive, (...or Santa Claus is coming to town, late?) Last week a government that refused to bring down the price of fuel for years, abruptly did so, even though there was a stubborn refusal earlier despite court orders. more..

Palms oiled for lubricants

Jan 3 (LB) Adding to the controversy regarding the hedging deal where the country lost millions, the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation(CPC) is neck deep in corruption. Many senior officers of the CPC are heavily involved in making a quick buck on slick oil deals. Their hands are well ‘greased’ with cutbacks and commissions from various oily characters. The CPC is involved in importing unmarketable lubricant oil products from Malaysia due to more..

'The only vested interest I could have is political'

Jan 3 (LB) Former Chief Justice Sarath N Silva tells LAKBIMAnEWS that he has entered the political arena because of the “barrage of attacks” launched on him by the government and reveals the real reasons for falling out with President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Q: The government says that the 17th amendment is seriously flawed and that it cannot be implemented until these loopholes are corrected. Do you think this argument is valid? more..