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'EU to lift ban on fish exports soon'

Aug 9 (DN) A high ranking delegation from the European Union is slated to arrive in Sri Lanka during October on an inspection tour of the country's fisheries sector. Following this visit, the EU is likely to revoke their ban on Sri Lankan fish exports as authorities have already implemented a number of recommendations proposed by the EU in 2014. This was revealed by Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Minister Mahinda more..

Speaker calls for nominees to CC

Sep 9 (DM) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya has written to the respective parties to nominate their members to the Constitutional Council (CC) to be set up in conformity with the composition of the new parliament. The 10-member CC, which was re-instated under the 19th Amendment is authorized to make appointments to the independent commissions. The Speaker, the Opposition Leader and the PM are its ex-offcio members. more..

'Don't support SL's domestic probe move'

Sep 9 (PTI) DMK today opposed any move by the US to bring in a revised resolution in a UN rights body on a probe into alleged rights violations in Sri Lanka, as reported in the media, and said India should not support it. "It is widely reported in the press that the USA is going to bring in a totally revised resolution seeking a domestic inquiry into alleged war crimes and human rights violations during the peak of civil war in 2009," more..

Three new Cabinet Ministers sworn in

Sep 9 (AD) Three National List MPs were sworn in as Cabinet Ministers before President Maithripala Sirisena today. Faizer Mustapha (SLFP): Local Govt and Provincial Councils. Vijith Wijeyamuni Soysa (SLFP): Irrigation and Water Management. Malik Samarawickrama (UNP): Development Strategies and & International Trade. The new appointments brings the total number of Ministers in the Cabinet to 46. more..

Empowerment, CC Appointments

Sep 9 (CT) Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe speaking to the press on Monday said that there was no truth in regard to the story that the govt plans to dissolve the State owned and run Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC). He however, said that what may be done is the reconstitution of CIABOC under the proposed Constitutional Council (CC) as per the 19th Amendment, a fact affirmed by a press release issued by the Presidential Secretariat more..

DEW’s petition against selection of UPFA NL MPs fixed for support

Sep 9 (Island) Supreme Court fixed for support on Sept 16, fundamental rights violation petition filed by D.E.W. Gunasekera of the UPFA against the selection of defeated candidates to be nominated as National List MPs of the UPFA. The petition said the list published and submitted to the Election Commissioner prior to the poll of August 17, 2015 should have been taken into consideration. But after the election, selected National List MPs of UPFA comprised mostly defeated candidates. more..

Daily Mirror Cartoon

Socialism & The electoral failure of The left

Sep 9 (CT) Searching a common candidate for 2015 Presidential election and campaigning for the victory of Maithripala Sirisena is a unique political experience. In this campaign activists who are labeled as leftists (whether old or new) played a vital and massive role in criticizing Rajapaksa regime and the familial rule. On the other hand two frontline JHU MPs Champika Ranawaka and Rev Athuraliye Rathana who fired initial salvos against the regime also possess a left orientation. more..

Tax on imported sugar, potatoes revised

Sep 9 (AD) The special commodity levy imposed on imported sugar has been increased by Rs 12 per kg while the levy on potatoes has been increased by Rs 10 per kg. The special commodity levies have been increased with effect from midnight on Sep 8. However, the ministry says that there will be no change in the market price of sugar. In a statement, Finance Ministry said that the decision to increase the tax on imported potatoes was taken due to local potato crops reaching the market. more..

Australia remains out of reach for Sri Lanka's fleeing Tamils

Sep 9 (DPA) 36-year old Vithiyalingam Lingarajan from former war-torn northern Sri Lanka always dreamt of living in Australia with his wife and four children. A fisherman by profession, Lingarajan approached an agent who claimed that he could get him to Australia by sea, but needed to pay 1.3 million rupees for the passage. He borrowed part of the money and pawned his wife's jewellery to raise funds, but still short of money he agreed more..

South African Tamil groups congratulate Sampanthan

Sep 9 (Island) South African Tamil Federation (SATF) has congratulated TNA leader R. Sampanthan on being recognised as the Opposition Leader. A spokesperson for SATF said that they had several meetings with Sampanthan in South Africa and found him to be very involved at an early stage with the politics. Spokesperson said: "Whilst our meetings with Sampanthan and his delegation was robust and sometimes very candid, we can safely say he is a matured intelligent politician more..

Govt saddened over death of UAE troops

Sep 9 (CG) The Govt today said it was saddened over death of forty-five soldiers from the Armed Forces of the United Arab Emirates in Yemen. A Foreign Ministrry statement said that it is with profound grief and sorrow that the Sri Lanka learnt about the death of 45 soldiers from Armed Forces of the UAE in Yemen while contributing to restore security and stability of the country. “It was indeed unfortunate that this news reached us soon after the visit of Foreign Minister of UAE to Sri Lanka,” more..

SL aims to raise inland fisheries production

Sep 9 (EN) Sri Lanka plans to double inland fisheries production by supporting aquaculture to make up for dwindling ocean fish stocks. “Aquaculture now accounts for almost half of fisheries production globally,” said Nimal Chandraratne, Director General of the National Aquaculture Development Authority (NAQDA). “Fisheries and aquatic resources can contribute significantly to raising economic growth rate.” more..

Several MR Supporters Receive Ministerial Portfolios

Sep 9 (AM) Forty MPs took oaths as State Ministers and Deputy Ministers today. Accordingly, 19 State Ministers and 21 Deputy Ministers accepted ministerial portfolios in front of President Sirisena. Interestingly, several staunch supporters of former President Rajapaksa were also given ministerial portfolios. They include former western provincial councilor Nimal Lanza, former MPs Sumedha Jayasena, Nishantha Muthuhettigama and Arundika Fernando. more..

Renuka Herath appointed CPC Opposition Leader

Sep 9 (Island) Veteran UNP politician from Nuwara Eliya District, Renuka Herath, has been appointed the Leader of the Opposition of the Central Provincial Council. Newly elected Chairman of the Central provincial Council L. D. Nimalasiri (UPFA) announced yesterday (08) the appointment of Herath, who unsuccessfully contested the last month’s general election. Meanwhile, Chanka Ilepperuma (UNP) has been appointed as the Chief Opposition Whip of the CPC. more..

A special statement from JVP on the floating armoury

Sep 9 (LT) It is reported that the JVP intends making a special statement in Parliament on the 22nd regarding the Avant Garde Maritime Services or the floating armoury. It is further reported that the JVP intends revealing certain incidents that had taken place since the inception of Avant Garde Security Services, about certain ministers, MPs and state officials who have had close relations with the company and about those who interfered in more..

Sri Lanka fruit exports up 51%, vegetables up 25% in 2014

Sep 9 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s earnings from exports of fruits and vegetables during the year 2014 has increased compared to the previous year. The CCC said earnings from fruit exports has seen the biggest jump, accounting for a 51% rise, while earnings from vegetable exports have gone up by 25% during the same period. Exports of fruits from Sri Lanka to countries such as UAE, India, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Maldives and Germany all have gone up during the year under review. more..

Int’l conspirators out to destroy Military Intelligence: NPM

Sep 9 (Island) National Patriotic Movement (NPM) Secretary, Wasantha Bandara said that the govt should take precautions when investigating the killing of journalist Pradeep Ekneligoda as there was a conspiracy against the military intelligence personnel. Claiming the on-going govt action was a betrayal of the army intelligence officers, Bandara said exposing the identities of the intelligence personnel was part of the strategy of the foreign-backed conspirators. more..

President declares open Air-Force Swimming Pool Complex

Sep 9 (PSL) President Maithripala Sirisena declared open the Air-Force Swimming Pool Complex in Ratmalana yesterday (8). The new state-of-the-art facility is 50 metres in length and 25 metres in width with a depth of 5.2 metres at the far end and 1.4 metres at the other end. The pool comprises of 10 swimming lanes. The facility could also be utilized for a range of aquatic sports including competitive swimming, water polo, more..

Stocks close up 0.8%; More retail activity

Sep 9 (LBO) Stocks closed up 0.83% on Wednesday with index heavy and banking sector stocks showing gains, brokers said. The Colombo benchmark All Share Price Index closed up 58.79 points at 7,183.76 higher 0.83%. S&P SL20 closed 22.94 points lower at 3,937.55 up 0.59%. Turnover was 647 million rupees, up from 430 million rupees, Tuesday with 138 stocks closing positive against 24 negative. “Investor sentiment seems to have changed and we saw more retail activity,” more..

Prez, PM appoint their nominees to the CC

Sep 9 (AD) The PM and the President on Wednesday appointed their nominees to the Constitutional Council. Accordingly, Minister Champika Ranawaka and Wijedasa Rajapakse have been appointed to the CC respectively. JVP MP Vijitha Herath has also been nominated to the CC. The civil society representatives of the CC will be appointed within next few days with the Parliament’s approval. CC will comprise 7 members from the Parliament and 3 independent members. more..

Prez, PM willing to work with EPDP, CWC

Sep 9 (Island) President Sirisena and PM Wickremesinghe have agreed to work with the EPDP and CWC, but not given any assurances with regard to portfolios. Leader of the EPDP Douglas Devananda said that he had met both the President and PM recently and expressed a willingness to be part of the National Govt. "They welcomed my offer and said that they would work with me and the EPDP, but did not make any more..

RADA officials granted bail

Sep 9 (DM) Finance Director of Reconstruction and Development Agency (RADA) and its Construction Director has been released on bail by Colombo Fort Magistrate today. Finance Director Jayantha Samarasinghe and Construction Director P.S. Sudan were in remand custody in connection with an alleged fraud at RADA. Magistrate observed that he was ordering the suspects be released taking into consideration of the Supreme Court’s interim order issued in respect of former MP Tiran Alles. more..

Lanza, Arundika exchange deputy ministerial portfolios

Sep 9 (AM) Nimal Lanza and Arundika Fernando, two newly appointed Deputy Ministers, exchanged their portfolios within a few hours of taking oaths at the Presidential Secretariat. Lanza was appointed Deputy Minister of Tourism and Christian Affairs while Fernando was appointed Deputy Minister of Home Affairs. Following the exchange of portfolios, Lanza becomes the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs and Fernando becomes the Deputy Minister of Tourism and Christian Affairs. more..

Opposition Leader Sampanthan confident of a lasting solution

Sep 9 (CT) TNA would endorse a lasting political solution to the Tamil issue that would be accepted by the Tamil community, declared R.Sampanthan, Leader of TNA and the Leader of the Opposition. He said TNA would not act against the wishes of Tamil people and the people should not get the wrong impression that by accepting position of Leader of the Opposition, political solution has been found to Tamil question. more..

Sri Lankan accounting body supports Maldives Auditor General’s office

Sep 9 (EN) Institute of Chartered Accountants of SL (CA Sri Lanka) is to provide training and technical assistance to the Auditor General’s Office of Maldives. Under a MoU signed between the two organisations, CA Sri Lanka will work to strengthen and develop the accounting and auditing profession in the Maldives. Auditor General of Maldives Hassan Ziyath said that the agreement marks the building of a strong foundation for the development of the accounting and audit profession in Maldives. more..

Fonseka accuses AG of acting inimical to interests of govt

Jan 9 (Island) DP leader Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka accused the AG’s Department of acting in a way inimical to the interests of the Maithripala Sirisena-Wickremesinghe administration. The new administration couldn’t turn a blind eye to what was going on since the January revolution. Fonseka discussed the stand taken up by the AG as regards Minister Mangala Samaraweera’s complaint to the CID on an alleged coup on the night of the presidential poll, Avant Garde controversy more..

Sri Lanka's historic election that voters lost

Jan 9 (EN) The naming of deputy ministers of the new govt has kept pace with the record-setting cabinet and confirmed that voters were the clear losers at the August 17 parliamentary election. Business community had high hopes of seeing Harsha de Silva and Eran Wickremaratne getting key positions where their knowledge on monetary and fiscal matters could have been fully utilised. Harsha has been given a subject foreign to more..

Sarana released on bail

Sep 9 (DM) Former Deputy Minister Sarana Gunawardena who was in the remand custody for allegedly assaulting a person, was released on bail by Gampaha Chief Magistrate today. He was released on two sureties of Rs. 50,000 and ordered to report to the Gampaha Police on every Sundays. The matter was referred to the reconciliation board. Two other suspects, who were also in the remand custody over the incident, were earlier enlarged on personal bail of Rs. 50,000 each. more..

JVP to seek SC clarification on National Govt

Jan 9 (DN) The JVP is to seek a clarification from Supreme Courts on national govt as defined in new constitutional provisions that became law under the 19th Amendment, said JVP Politburo member and former MP K.D. Lal Kantha yesterday. Lal Kantha said, although the concept of National Govt has been recognized by the Constitution of Sri Lanka, the people have not given a mandate to the SLFP to join with the UNP to become coalition partners of a new govt. more..

New State and Deputy Ministers sworn in

Sep 9 (AD) President Maithripala Sirisena had appointed Lakshman Yapa as state minister for Finance, Niroshan Perera State Minister of National Policies & Economic Affairs and Sujeeva Senasinghe as state minister for International Trade. Harsha de Silva, economic spokesman for the then opposition UNP has been appointed Deputy Foreign Minister. Eran Wickremeratne, a financial sector professional is Deputy Minister for State Enteprises. more..

Unity of minority politicians in national govt

Sep 10 (CT) The country marks another historical milestone with the selection of Mr R. Sampanthan, a Tamil MP by ethnicity, as the opposition leader of the Parliament. It was Mr Amirthaligam MP who occupied the post of opposition leader of the Parliament in 1977. Scholars posit that this new turn of event symbolizes a healthy dimension of democracy and is a sign of peace and reconciliation restoring in the country, following the silent revolution that took place in Jan 8, 2015. more..

Electing Obama & selecting Sampanthan

Sep 10 (CT) The TNA leader Mr. R. Sampanthan was selected as the Leader of the Opposition in the Sri Lankan Parliament by the Speaker, Mr. Karu Jayasuriya. The position of the Leader of the Opposition is traditionally held by the leader of the largest party in the opposition in a Westminster system of Parliamentary govt. There is no doubt that leading the opposition by a minority Tamil leader in a country which has a Sinhala-Buddhist majority is a victory of Pluralism. more..

Lessons from Lok Sabha: Of lean Cabinets and representation

Sep 10 (SO) Much is spoken of the proposed enactment and operational procedures for the draft 20th Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka. This became a contentious topic of discussion among all politicians, parties and the general public. Looking at what the govt sought to achieve through reforms, this article seeks to highlight some lessons for Sri Lanka from neighbouring India. more..

Mahaweli River polluted with polythene and plastic

Sep 10 (NS) As the waters of the great Mahaweli River recede during the dry season, many areas below the Kandy Polgolla dam such as Lewella, Polgolla and Tennekumbura become a sight for sore eyes. Generally not visible when the water levels remain high, however, visitors and residents are confronted with a tragic scene during the dry season where they can witness a polythene and plastic- cluttered river bed and river bank running for miles downstream. more..

A people held hostage

Sep 10 (NS) A country’s political direction has irrevocably been altered and things have been turned on their head. It is easy to forget under these circumstances that this entire transformation operates within a bubble, because there was no democracy at all in operation in electing the government that is now said to be in power. Someone might say there is no government, at least not yet, certainly not at the time of writing, and that’s true too. more..

'Will assist youngsters'

Sep 10 (CT) Former Sri Lanka fast bowler Nuwan Zoysa speaks about his humble beginnings and memorable experiences during his career, and is grateful to Captain Cool Arjuna Ranatunga for recognizing his talent and giving him a break. Nuwan, who represented SSC in his heyday, said that he now wants to give something back to the country by helping the younger generation with the experience he has gained. more..

PTA detainees ignored under Yahapalanaya?

Sep 10 (GV) Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and Emergency Regulations (ER) have resulted in arbitrary arrest, prolonged detention without charges, long drawn out court cases, multiple cases against one suspect, inhumane detention conditions, torture, forced confessions, long years to release those who are innocent, post-release harassment and restrictions, including re-arrests. Many of the detainees have spent most of their youth behind bars, and their mental and physical wellbeing more..

National List? What List?

Sep 10 (GV) The 8th parliament has been convened after a roller-coaster election. The indelible ink still stains my little finger, but my optimism about the national list wore off some time ago. The results were a mixed bag; Sri Lanka sent home some notorious politicians, but it also returned a remarkable number (one in particular, straight from remand prison). While the UNF and ITAK gained the ground that the UPFA lost, the JVP under-performed; their showing seemed not to more..

What's eating Ishant Sharma?

Sep 10 (CI) For far too long he was Unlucky Ishant, a bowler who came off a very long run-up, bowled his heart out for India, and beat batsmen often enough, though the wickets seemed to elude him. Around the 50-Test mark, he had the second worst bowling average ever. Then things started to change for him - the wrist position improved, so the ball started to move laterally after it pitched, unlike earlier, where it would go bolt straight onto more..