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Frederica Jansz, Sarath Fonseka and Lanka-e-News

Jan 5 (DN) Frederica Jansz has written ‘her story’ on that infamous interview with Sarath Fonseka in the Sunday Leader of January 3, 2010. She has stated quite convincingly what transpired at the interview and afterwards. She has inter alia said something about her journalistic ethics as well as her political positions vis-a-vis the Rajapaksa regime, the Presidential Election and preferred outcome of the same. more..

TISL received Rs. 124 mn to battle corruption

Jan 5 (Island) Transparency International Sri Lanka has received funds from several donors to carry out anti-corruption programmes relating to tsunami reconstruction and rehabilitation projects. Among the donors were Swedish International Development Agency ($ 124,294.50), Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (Rs. 357,433 and Rs. 850,000), Transparency International Secretariat (Euro 3,260) and BMZ Foundation through the Federal Republic of Germany ($ 72,037). more..

Largest exhibition in Jaffna

Jan 5 (DN) The Federation of Information Technology Sri Lanka (FITIS) is organizing the largest exhibition to be held in the Jaffna peninsula after 30 years, the Mini Infotel Jaffna exhibition, which will be held from February 26 - 28 at the Wembady Girls’High School, Jaffna. FITIS and the Presidential Task Force for English and IT with the assistance of ICTA have launched a program to take ICT to the regions. more..

Over 5,000 UNPers, JVPers join Govt in Rajanganaya

Jan 5 (DN) Over 5,000 UNP and JVP supporters in Rajangana have crossed over to the UPFA, said Chandrasena Gamage, a JVP member of the Rajanganaya Pradeshiya Sabha after obtaining the UPFA membership at a public meeting in Anuradhapura. He said out of the 3,000 who have JVP membership in Rajnaganaya, 2,500 have joined the Government. Rajanganaya Pradeshiya Sabha Chairman Saman Nilmini said 3,000 UNP stalwarts have joined the UPFA more..

Top dancer backs Sarath

Jan 5 (Island) Actress Uppeksha Swarnamali has called upon the people to vote for Opposition presidential candidate General (Retd) Sarath Fonseka. She said that she had faith in Fonskea and voters should take this opportunity to bring him to power. Swarnamali, who plays the leading role in the mega tele-drama series ‘Paba’ telecast over the ITN, more..

'Use of IT and upgraded systems in the battle-theater was a major turn around'

Jan 5 (MoD) "Terrorism was the main obstacle to our economic development over the last thirty years. Everyday citizens suffered enormously from the terrorist menace. A powerful sense of uncertainty was cast over our day to day lives. It was very difficult for people to go about their everyday business with complete peace of mind. more..

'Cutouts, posters out by Thursday'

Jan 5 (AD) The Elections Commissioner (EC) has ordered that all Presidential election related posters, cutouts and banners in public places be removed by Thursday, January 7, said UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake. Representatives and candidates for the January 26 Presidential election met Elections Commissioner Dayananda Dissanayake this evening at the Elections Secretariat in Rajagiriya. more..

Here come the Anarchists

Jan 5 (DM) Sunday certainly was the day of those who prey on polls. Kiribathgoda, Nittambuwa, Nawalapitiya and Piliyandala – violence reported from four areas within a day justified the fear that Sri Lanka is in for more repressive poll behaviour in the days to come. True, Sri Lanka is not the only democracy in the world to witness political activists at their worst possible behaviour during campaigns with those with sharper elbows unleashing violence against the less powerful. more..

Sri Lankan Airlines says airport check-in back to normal

Jan 5 (LBO) Sri Lankan Airlines said check-in at the Bandaranaike International Airport north of Colombo was back to normal and passengers need not come four hours ahead of departure. “Normal check-in counter opening times have resumed from Tuesday morning, on all departures out of Bandaranaike International Airport,” an airline statement said. All passengers should report to the airport only three hours before scheduled departure times, more..

Prices of chicken, eggs and rice play havoc among consumers

Jan 5 (Island) Christmas and New Year has come and gone, it's nearly a week into January, but poultry products (chicken and eggs) remain high and even various varieties of rice are in short supply. The controlled price of a kilo of chicken is Rs. 320, but it is available (but not freely) only at supermarket chains, while the price in the open market is Rs. 440. Eggs are marketed between Rs. 17 and Rs. 20. more..

UNP claims threats holding back TMVP cross-overs

Jan 5 (DM) Several Members of the TMVP, including a Deputy Chairman of a Provincial Council are willing to support the candidacy of opposition Presidential candidate General Sarath Fonseka but are hesitant owing to threats from the government, UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayaka said. “The government is threatening these members, therefore they can’t come out and openly support the General. more..

UN Year in Review 2009

A few questions for Mangala

Jan 5 (DM) Mangala Samaraweera MP, current co-spokesperson for presidential candidate General Sarath Fonseka, would be a busy man these days, finalizing the minimum common programme (MCP) that the disparate parties that support the General’s candidacy, ranging from the main opposition UNP to the JVP and the SLMC, can agree on, as the platform on which the General will campaign and seek election to this nation’s highest office. more..

Downsize This!

Jan 5 (DM) Driving in Colombo is a nightmare – trying to avoid the hurtling buses, three wheelers that dangerously cut you off, and just the bad and aggressive driving. Add to that these crazy convoys. It was a crazy traffic before new year, and everyone was annoyed as we were forced to inch along. In between the horning and engine roaring there was a loud mechanical wait and before we knew it we were shoved onto a side as two back up jeeps and a tinted SUV drove by. more..

Leave for voting at Presidential Election

Jan 5 (GDI) The Presidential polls will take place on Tuesday, January 26th 2010.Voting will commence from and conclude at 4.00 pm. Under the provisions of Section 110 of the Presidential Elections Act No. 15 of 1981 regarding grant of leave to employees for casting their vote they must apply for leave in writing and also all respective employers should prepare a statement of employees who have applied for leave more..

'Restore media freedom' candidates urged

Jan 5 (BBC) Media organisations in Sri Lanka have urged main candidates at the presidential elections to prove that they are genuinely interested in restoring media freedom. Eight media organisations said they will hand over a document titled "Implementing the Reform Program," to all candidates at 26 January presidential polls. The Free Media Movement (FMM) accused all governments that came to power since 1994 of more..

Prabhakaran's personal gun, body armour found

Jan 5 (PTI) Sri Lanka on Tuesday claimed to have found the slain Tamil Tiger chief Vellupilai Prabhakaran's personal gun and body armour, seven months after overrunning the last LTTE bastion in the decisive battle at Nanthaikadal lagoon off the northern coast. The arms used by Prabhakaran were found buried 15 feet under the ground at Vellamulliwaikkal area more..

Sri Lanka appreciates UK move

Jan 5 (Island) The government yesterday welcomed a British decision to further ease travel restrictions placed on British passport holders visiting Sri Lanka. Since the end of the war in May, foreign governments had gradually eased unfavourable travel advisories, government sources told The Island. Sources said that the government had relaxed security measures that were in place in many parts of the country, more..

Tamil political prisoners in CRP, Magazine prisons on hunger strike

Jan 5 (TN) More than 360 Tamil political prisoners being detained in Colombo Remand Prison and in the Magazine prison in Colombo are on a wide scale hunger strike demanding the authorities to expedite their cases or release them on bail. 52-year-old Kanagasabai Devadasan, who was former State Film Corporation director, abducted and later detained at the New Magazine Prison in Welikada, launched his fast-unto-death campaign on January 01 more..

'We did not let even Prabha starve'

Jan 5 (DM) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said his government never kept even LTTE leader Prabhakaran in hunger, although the LTTE closed down the A-9 road. He said, “When the LTTE closed down the A-9 route we sent essentials by air. We did not get ships to do that. We did not get Red Cross Flags to do that. But we did not keep even Prabhakaran, against whom we fought, starving. But we were always blamed for violating Human Rights.” more..

Sri Lankan opposition vows to end emergency laws

Jan 5 (AFP) Sri Lanka's main opposition vowed on Tuesday to immediately end the state of emergency that has been in place on the island for 27 years if its presidential candidate wins this month's election. The opposition's candidate, Sarath Fonseka, will scrap the tough laws that have been in effect almost continuously since 1983 to deal with the separatist Tamil Tiger rebels who were defeated in May last year. more..

Missing tsunami funds: Who misappropriated $ 471 mn?

Jan 5 (Island) The Transparency International Sri Lanka yesterday acknowledged that a sum of $ 471,931,440 missing from the tsunami reconstruction and rehabilitation funds had been received by various INGO/NGOs as well as the government. Rukshana Nanayakkara of TISL told The Island that the money had been received through government approved channels though the Auditor General had not conducted an audit since 2005. more..

Will restore normality in Tamil areas: Fonseka tells TNA

Jan 5 (Hindu) The post-Prabakaran TNA on Monday evening threw its weight behind the Opposition consensus Presidential nominee retired General Sarath Fonseka, an announcement by UNP which is leading the alliance in support of the General said. The pronouncement came within hours after the retired General, in a bid to garner the support of the Tamil voters, handed over to the leader of the TNA, more..

Vegetable prices soar in Dambulla area

Jan 6 (FP) The consumers in Dambulla area expressed concern for the sharp increase in the prices of vegetables. They pointed out that the retail prices of vegetables increased by 100 per cent of the wholesale prices further burdening the people who are already facing hardships due to the high cost of living. The wholesale traders said they were not in a position to meddle with the retail prices. more..

EU plans temporarily stop on Sri Lanka's duty free export status for bicycles

Jan 6 (BE) The European Commission has completed a thorough investigation into the human rights situation in Sri Lanka in relation to the country’s duty free export status for bicycles and bicycle parts. Christiane Hohmann, the Commission’s spokesperson for Trade said: “Sri Lanka is not living up to the commitments it made to respect international human rights standards when it became a more..

Samaraweera ton takes SL home

Jan 6 (CI) As the outfield became saturated with dew and the bowlers found it harder to grip the soft white ball, Sri Lanka's hopes of chasing down 280 rested heavily on the shoulders of their two most experienced batsmen, Kumar Sangakkara and Thilan Samaraweera. Upul Tharanga and Lahiru Thirimanne, the debutant, had given them a brisk start, but but once India conceded just 16 in the five overs of the bowling Powerplay, more..

Debrief - 05. 01. 2010

Suspected LTTE militant arrested in India

Jan 6 (PTI) A suspected LTTE militant has been arrested at a checkpost at Cumbum near Theni after his passport and identity cards were found to be forged. Police said Siridharan (32) and his friend, a registered refugee of the Mandapam camp, were on their way back from the Sabarimala temple in Kerala on Monday when they were stopped for a routine check. Police grew suspicious when they heard his Sri Lankan Tamil accent and more..

2 injured in clash between rival political parties in Ea'raavoor

Jan 6 (TN) A clash erupted Sunday around 9:00 a.m in Ea'raavoor between the supporters of ruling UPFA and opposition party supporters in which a UPFA supporter and the secretary of SLMC treasurer were injured, sources in Ea'raavoor said. This clash took place in Ribaai Mosque Oaadaaviyaar Veethi. One of the injured is Mohamed Thambi Thasthakeer, 33, a member of ruling UPFA party. more..

SLN mini camp in Ampaa'rai closed

Jan 6 (TN) A Sri Lanka Navy mini camp erected a month ago on the coast near Kaaraitheevu Veerapaththiran temple in Ampaa'rai district was closed down on request of many people who participated in the opening ceremony of the SLFP office on Kaaraitheevu beach Saturday. President's Ampaarai district coordinator, K. Iniyabarathi who spoke at the event promised the people that the said mini camp would be closed within 24 hours, more..

Sri Lanka to tighten supervision of banking groups

Jan 6 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s Central Bank intends to monitor more closely banking sector group companies to improve its supervision of financial institutions, Governor Nivard Cabraal said. The move is part of several measures being taken to better regulate the financial sector after several institutions, both regulated and unregulated, got into trouble in the last two years. more..

Fonseka slammed for agreeing to TNA’s demand

Jan 6 (EB) The Mahinda Rajapaka camp has slammed the joint opposition Presidential candidate Gen.Sarath Fonseka for agreeing to the pro-LTTE TNA’s demand that the Tamil-speaking Northern and Eastern Provinces be merged once again to form a single Tamil province. “If this (the agreement) is true, it is a revival of the Eelam cause,” said Tilak Karunaratne, more..

Golden Key takes its 11th victim

Jan 6 (BL) Nearly one year after the Golden Key Credit card fiasco which caused a ripple effect in the country’s banking and finance sector, over half a millions depositors around the island are still without recompense. President of Golden Key Depositors Association, Anusha Emmert, told The Bottom Line that so far 11 depositors had lost their lives in the aftermath of the Golden Key scandal, directly or indirectly impacted by its fallout. more..

Nearly 1million still without valid IDs

Jan 6 (BL) With three more weeks for the Presidential election, the PAFFREL reiterated that the non-possessing of a recognised identity card nearly by 1 million citizens is a serious issue. Sri Sabhanayagam, a senior member of PAFFREL, bringing up the conundrum of the residents in the Northern and Eastern Provinces stated that they should register themselves on a regular basis to be able to cast votes and more..

'Allegations against Fonseka baseless'

Jan 6 (BL) While noting that the opposition is ready to prove allegations levelled against incumbent President Mainda Rajapaksa at any time, co-spokesman for Presidential candidate Gen. Sarath Fonseka, Anura Kumara Dissanayaka said and added that the UPFA on their part has completely lost its track on proving President Rajapaksa clean. more..

Presidential race grips Ceylinco depositors

Jan 6 (BL) With just three weeks remaining for the 2010 Presidential Election, six unions of depositors of troubled finance companies are unifying under an umbrella body, in a bid to support a presidential candidate; reportedly Sarath Fonseka. The Bottom Line learns that depositors of five troubled Ceylinco entities – Golden Key Credit Card Company Ltd, Ceylinco Finance and Guarantee (F&G), Ceylinco Investment and Realty (CIR), Ceylinco Profit Sharing Ltd, more..

Lanka polls: 'No direction from India to TNA'

Jan 6 (EB) There has been no direction from India on which candidate the TNA should support in the upcoming Sri Lankan Presidential election, according to a top TNA source. “In our interactions with Indian diplomats and officials both here and in New Delhi, we had been told very clearly that we were free to support whichever side was better from the Tamils’ point of view,” said a TNA MP from Jaffna on condition of anonymity. more..

PM assures Emergency Laws will not be misused

Jan 6 (BL) Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake assured that the government will not use the emergency laws to achieve petty political ambitions and the government prepared to present to Parliament the fraud charges against the candidate of the New Democratic Front, while presenting the motion to extend state of emergency by another month in Parliament yesterday. more..

Has Sri Lanka ever had uncorrupt leaders?

Jan 6 (AT) This is a question the public needs to ask themselves. For in answering this basic question the voter will realize the hypocrisy of democracy itself and the reality that the voter’s democratic right during any election is to choose the seemingly “lesser” corrupt leader to office. By and large all elections end up deposing one party/leader and enthroning another but all doing the same thing in different versions. more..

Northern province artistes to perform at a mega cultural show in Colombo

Jan 6 (AT) The Northern province has completely changed and it has been transformed into a development hub under the directive of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, MP Basil Rajapaksa, said G.A. Chandrasiri, the Northern Province Governor. He said that as the Tri-force Commander for the Jaffna peninsula he had witnessed how the province was before the humanitarian operation was begun by the UPFA government. more..

IDPs 'resettled' to another camp

Jan 6 (BBC) Over two hundred IDPs had been relocated to a camp in Killinochchi instead of resettling in their homes, says one of the refugees who spoke to the BBC. He told the BBC Sinhala Service, that they were taken from Vavunia to Killinochchi to be put in another camp. "We were brought here from the Arunachalam camp in Vavunia. They told us that we would be permanently resettled in our own homes," he told the BBC. more..

Mayantha Dissanayake ‘returns home’

Jan 6 (AD) SLFP orgniser for Ampara Mayantha Dissanayake, the son of late Gamini Dissanayake, joined Presidential candidate General (Rtd.) Sarath Fonseka during his campaign rally at Ampara a short while ago. Mayantha Dissanayake was appointed SLFP orgniser for Ampara by President Mahinda Rajapaksa some time ago. Mr. Dissanayake said that he could not work together with the present SLFP members and more..

National Bhikku Front campaigns against arrest of Ven. Dhambara Amila Thero

Jan 6 (LT) A protest campaign organized by the National Bhikku Front (NBF) was held in Colombo today (5th) demanding the release of Ven. Dhambara Amila Thero, Senior Lecturer in Archeology and President of Patriotic National Centre (PNC) who has been taken to custody on false accusations by Mahinda Rajapakse government. The Bhikkus commenced their peaceful march of protest from Thilakarathnaramaya, more..

Migrant workers to receive a pension scheme

Jan 6 (AT) The United Peoples Freedom Alliance government is making arrangements to introduce a pension scheme or a similar scheme to strengthen economic conditions of the migrant workers in Sri Lankans soon. President Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing a group of migrant workers from several Middle Eastern countries said that he had already directed the officials to provide him a feasible report over the issue. more..

When inexperience and experience combined well

Jan 6 (CI) Never mind that Sri Lanka's win came in a tournament struggling to find a context and a meaning, but in the bigger picture, and with the World Cup near, this victory has a special significance. It got much closer than it should have, especially after Kumar Sangakkara and Thilan Samaraweera appeared to be in complete control, but a sweet aftertaste followed once they overcame the threat of choking. more..

Oppressive Govt is worse than a tiger said Confucius

Jan 6 (TC) Liu Shihui, a human right activist and a lawyer with a law firm in China was suddenly grabbed by the neck from behind while he was hiking with friends on Baiyun Mountain last October. Liu said he was questioned at the Guangzhou Public Security Bureau's office on the mountain for about four hours. What was the crime he committed? His T-shirt brought him trouble. Slogans on T-shirt were considered politically sensitive in China. more..

Tamil - speaking people are 56% in Colombo but administration is Sinhala alone

Jan 6 (TC) Soon after defeating LTTE terrorism in May 2009, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that there are no minority or majority communities in Sri Lanka today. There are only patriots and traitors, he explained. Muslim Ministers and political leaders supporting his UPFA Government have also said that there is no need for communal political parties and wanted the Muslims to join the National political parties. more..

All Ceylon Moulavies Jamiyyathul Ulama pledge their support to President Rajapaksa

Jan 6 (IL) All Ceylon Moulavies Jamiyyathul Ulama pledged their support to President Mahinda Rajapaksa in a special meeting at Temple Trees recently. President Rajapaksa met representatives from all parts of the country of All Ceylon Moulavies Jamiyyathul Ulama in the meeting which discussed Muslim religious affairs and the up coming Presidential elections. more..

Corruption charges raised against Fonseka in parliament

Jan 6 (TC) The JVP has now become the defender of corruption. The sacrosanct gentlemen of that party were carrying on their shoulders a Presidential Candidate who had used his position to award tenders for the purchase of equipment from a company owned by his son-in-law, JNP leader Wimal Weerawansa said in Parliament yesterday. Joining the debate on the extension of Emergency, Weerawansa said he had the vouchers, more..

Entry of Gen.Fonseka will lead to militarization of politics and politicisation of Military

Jan 6 (TC) It is with a sense of relief, emotion and pleasure that I am addressing the comrades and friends today after a lapse of almost 27 years since 1982 Presidential Election when I visited the North in support of Hector Kobbekaduwa, S.L.F.P. Presidential candidate. At that time, only the Communist Party backed Hector Kobbekaduwa. There were others in the field - the incumbent President J.R. Jayawardena, more..