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Assessing preferred outcomes in National Lists

Sep 2 (NS) Five years ago, there was a parliamentary elections, one which saw the ruling UPFA grab 144 seats and an easy majority. The opposing UNP obtained less than half that number. In addition to the MPs who were elected, both parties unveiled their National Lists. Some names stood out. They were fresh. Others didn’t. They were vintage. Several defections, changing loyalties, and attempts at wresting control from the ruling coalition later, the UNP emerged from some of more..

Representing the largest minority Speaking up for the voiceless

Sep 2 (CT) An independent Commonwealth Election monitoring team stated that election campaign financing disparity among candidates was a major hindrance to democracy. An independent Commonwealth Observer Group was invited by the Office of the Commissioner of Elections of Sri Lanka to observe the country's parliamentary election on 17 August. The nine-person observer team, selected by more..

Jayaratne Balasuriya’s moment

Sep 2 (NS) Newspapers build trust. Well, some don’t, but that’s what readership or rather retaining readership is all about. True, reliability is something tossed out to market appeal and thereby popularity, but some newspapers retain loyalty with honesty and integrity. As such they have their moments, and readers partake of them once in a while too. This is one such moment. Rivira’s been around for five years. It has built trust and that in a way projects appeal to those who’ve become fixated on it. more..

Examining the entrails!

Sep 2 (SL) The political dust would have settled on the recent general election by the time you see this and that is, in one way, quite a relief. The fact that E-Day didn’t feature the murder and mayhem that has, for far too long, been taken as a concomitant of the primary democratic process in this country seemed a matter for surprise to many whom I engaged in conversation on the subject. I am old enough to remember when it wasn’t so and I am sure that several of the younger generation more..

SLFP needs to revise its policies & strategies

Sep 2 (Island) The intended purpose of this essay is to provide some food for thought for the party leadership and its rank and file so that it could change its strategies and policies and establish a legitimate link with the historical foundations of the SLFP, which, unlike other political parties in the country, was a party based totally on the aspirations of the common man. Any overt attempt to deviate from this popular tradition more..

Editorial: SLFP turns 64

Sep 2 (Island) The SLFP passes an important milestone today. It celebrates its 64th anniversary. Arrangements have been made to mark this occasion on a grand scale in Polonnaruwa, we are told. Faction ridden with its big guns at daggers drawn, the SLFP has apparently lost its bearings. It is in this predicament because it failed to manage its electoral gains and settle its internal disputes without letting them spill over and cause defections. Its leaders have been settling their personal more..

This series a revelation with this bowling attack: Kohli

Sep 2 (CI) Virat Kohli, sitting alongside leading wicket-taker and Man of the Series R Ashwin, looked back at his team's 2-1 win over Sri Lanka and said, "I think this series belongs to the bowlers because they have been outstanding apart from Cheteshwar's knock which was world class, one of the best I have seen in Test cricket. Apart from that, the bowlers have really stood out in this series." India's series victory was not merely their first in Sri Lanka after 22 years, more..

Motor traders say everyone owning a car is not their dream

Sep 2 (Island) "Although we are motor traders, we don't selfishly believe that every citizen of the country should own a vehicle, Ceylon Motor Traders Association (CMTA) chairman Gihan Pilapitiya said. "Before long, we must have support services for transportation in addition to being able to drive your own car to the cities and towns. For example, you should be able to park your car at Peliyagoda and enter the city on more..

Mature India show the will to win

Sep 2 (CI) It was a sweltering afternoon in Colombo, the kind that is never understood unless it is experienced. Sweat drips everywhere, off fingers, arms, legs, off the forehead, stinging the eyes. It is heat of a kind that gets behind the eyes and as the sun continues to burn and beat down, the mind feels like it is being baked. That is what it was like under the roof of the media centre at the SSC, watching India push for victory - in the match, in the series, in the history books. more..

All’s well that ends well

Sep 2 (Island) At long last, Sri Lankans may be arriving at the moment of truth in the history of artificially imposed ethnic politics that has dominated the affairs of the nation state for well over one hundred years. The influence of deus ex machina manipulation of events from outside seems inescapable. Somehow the emerging trend makes it look as if the islanders will soon be able to say with a degree of resignation perhaps: All’s well that ends well. It was today(27)’s Island editorial more..

Ishant, Chandimal handed one-match bans

Sep 2 (CI) Ishant Sharma and Dinesh Chandimal have been handed one-match suspensions for behaviour that breached the ICC code of conduct during the SSC Test, while Dhammika Prasad and Lahiru Thirimanne were fined 50% of their match fees. This means that Ishant (who received two suspension points) will miss India's first Test against South Africa, in Mohali, in Nov. Chandimal (one suspension point) more..

War crimes: Allegations and wasted opportunities

Sep 2 (Island) A 2-day defence seminar, the fifth of an ongoing series, commenced yesterday. This year’s sessions, themed on National Security in the Context of Emerging Global Threats, were segmented into a range of related issues, including Terrorism and Challenges to National Security. The first three-day defence seminar was held on May 31, to June 2, 2011, two years after the conclusion of the war. The seminar dealt with Defeating Terrorism: Sri Lankan Experience. more..

Nestlé Lanka opens trading at CSE

Sep 2 (CT) Nestlé Lanka PLC (NEST) opened trading on the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) today. This event was yet another in a series of Market Opening Ceremonies, featuring the companies from the S&P SL20 index. Managing Director Ms. Shivani Hegde, Non-Executive Director Mahen Dayananda, Non-Executive Director Ranjan Seevaratnam, Executive Director and Vice President - Finance & Control Jagdish Kumar Singla, Assistant Vice President-Corporate Affairs more..

SL's tragic hero treads a lonely road, again

Sep 2 (CI) Angelo Mathews is now the first Sri Lanka captain in almost two decades who does not have a consistent match-winner in his team. It is a fate that has been coming to him for some time. There are occasional flashes of the sublime from this team, but those are oases in the desert. Mathews has no batsmen who routinely transforms matches, like Aravinda or Mahela did. Rangana is tenacious, but not often transcendent. more..

Manufacturing critical for Sri Lanka growth spurt, new study says

Sep 2 (EN) Industrial development, particularly manufacturing, is critical for countries like Sri Lanka, if they are to grow fast, a new Asian Development Bank (ADB) study said. Although services are important, most advanced economies are successful because of manufacturing capability, said the study on lessons for South Asia from the industrial cluster development experience of South Korea. Sri Lanka is relatively better off economically that other south Asian countries, despite its long civil war, more..

SLT strengthens ties as Telecom Partner of Sri Dalada Maligawa

Sep 2 (Island) Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) has strengthened its partnership as the official Telecommunications Service Provider of the Sri Dalada Maligawa. A MOU was signed recently to provide ultra-high-speed broadband internet services via SLT Fibre optic technology to the Maligawa premises as well as PEO TV facilities via IPTV technology. These services will be provided free of charge and will facilitate the media centre of the Temple of the Tooth to undertake the more..

Sri Lanka offered legal services of high profile British firm run by Cherie Blair

Sep 2 (ST) Cherie Blair, wife of the former British PM, has offered the services of her London-based international legal consultancy firm to the Sri Lanka Govt while on a private holiday this week. Omnia Strategy LLP provides strategic counsel to govts, corporates and private clients, according to its website. It was established by Ms. Blair only four years ago. She said that the firm does work in Africa, training lawyers and more..

BusinessDFCC, DFCC Vardhana Bank amalgamation approved

Sep 2 (DN) The amalgamation of DFCC Bank (DFCC) and DFCC Vardhana Bank (DVB) was unanimously approved by the shareholders of the two companies, at the Extraordinary General Meetings held on Aug 28. The Banks have received the letter of provisional approval from the Central Bank to proceed with the amalgamation, but await formal approval. The surviving entity will be DFCC Bank PLC, and the amalgamation will take effect on Oct 1 or such other date as may be approved more..

Life Insurance policies to surge to Rs 50 b

Sep 2 (DN) Insurance Board of Sri Lanka (IBSL) estimates that value of Lift insurance polices is likely to increase to Rs.50 billion by end of 2015. This was at Rs. 43 billion in 2014. IBSL Director General Damayanthi Fernando speaking at the Life Insurance Month launch from Sept 1 to 30 organized by Insurance Association of Sri Lanka (IASL) said 92% of these are being channelled by insurance advisers. “We have also seen a sharp 11% increase of them and we estimate that more..

Push Sri Lanka not to arrest fisherfolk: CM

Sep 2 (ENS) Bringing to the notice of Prime Minister Narendra Modi yet another incident of arrest of Tamil Nadu fishermen by the Lankan Navy, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa urged him to take immediate steps to release the 16 fishermen and their boats. She also urged the PM to initiate proactive measures that would bring about a permanent solution to the sensitive issue affecting livelihood of thousands of fishermen in TN. more..

Wimal denies...

Sep 2 (DN) Referring to our lead story of yesterday Wimal apologies to President National Freedom Party Leader Wimal Weerawansa, MP states that he denies the content of the story in toto, as the story was based on false assumption. The letter signed by Wimal Weerawansa states: The news item's claim is based on false information. Hence, I deny the content of the story toto. I request that my statement be given the same prominence, that was given to the news item. more..

Marriage registrations on the decline

Sep 2 (DN) The number of marriage registrations in Sri Lanka decreased during the past four years. In 2011, 200,314 marriages were registered and it deceased to 198,710 in 2012. Only 180,760 marriages were registered in 2013. This is a considerable drop when compared with the 2011 statistics. Only 175,728 marriages were registered last year. 155,171 registrations were carried out under the normal law while 822 marriages were registered under the Up Country Law. more..

Karu,Thilanga elected unanimously as Speaker and Deputy Speaker

Sep 2 (Island) The eighth parliament which commenced sittings yesterday selected Karu Jayasuriya and Thilanga Sumathipala unanimously to the posts of Speaker and Deputy Speaker respectively. TNA’s Selvam Adikkalanathan was selected to the post of Deputy Chairman of Committees. When the House commenced sittings at 9.30 am, as Sergeant-at-Arms Anil Parakrama paraded the Mace all members arose from more..

Kotahena shooting: Police release suspect’s photo

Sep 2 (DM) Police released the photograph of a person identified as Jude Priyantha Francis and sought the public’s assistance to locate his whereabouts. He is a suspect in the Bloemendhal shooting which killed two people and injured 12 others during an election campaign. Police said the suspect is known to have two residential addresses, one at 75/51 B, First Cross Lane, Templers Road in Mount Lavinia and at No. 15/19A, Weligampitiya, Ja-Ela. They said any information could be more..

Sri Lanka surpasses Guinness Record in kandy for world’s largest tea party

Sep 2 (CT) In a unique partnership, Sri Lanka Tourism, SriLankan Airlines and Sri Lanka Tea Board with implementing partner APOT (Asia Pacific Onboard Tour agencies) Sri Lanka crossed the Largest Tea Party in the Guinness Book of Records in Kandy over the weekend. The private sector partner was global value added tea brand Basilur whilst the official biscuit was Maliban. The 32,682 and 32,683 cups of tea were consumed by President Sirisena and PM Wickremesinghe, more..

War crimes probe: Canada won’t reveal its stand till text of new resolution is ready

Sep 2 (Island) Canada has reiterated that Sri Lanka should cooperate with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in fulfilling its human rights obligations. Having acknowledged the decision to request a one-time extension of the OHCHR probe into human rights violations in Sri Lanka at 28th session of UNHRC, Canadian govt spokesperson said that Canada would examine OHCHR report carefully. more..

Opposition Leader to be appointed tomorrow

Sep 2 (CT) It has been decided to name the Opposition Leader and the Chief Organizer of the Eighth Parliament tomorrow. This decision was made at a meeting of party leaders held at the Speaker's Office in Parliament yesterday chaired by Speaker Karu Jayasuriya. In addition, the debate asked for by the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna pertaining to the number of ministers to be appointed to the National Government will be taken up for discussion on 3 September. more..

Enact electoral reforms within a year: Nimal

Sep 2 (DM) Electoral reforms must be enacted during the first year of the new parliament, former Opposition Leader Nimal Siripala de Silva said today. Extending his congratulations for the Speaker, he said a mix of the First Past the Post System and the Proportional Representation should be introduced forthwith and the preferential voting abolished. He said Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, as a member of the UNP, took a keen interest in evolving a new electoral system. more..

Top performing UNP MPs to get best ministerial portfolios

Sep 2 (Island) The top performing UNP candidates at the August 17 Election are to be given the more important ministerial portfolios in the new Cabinet to be sworn in before President Maithripala Sirisena on Friday. Sources said that the criteria for appointment of ministers had been laid down by PM Ranil Wickremesinghe prior to August 17, Polls. "UNP candidates who performed well in winning their electorates or in the case of more..

New constitution, oversight committees soon: Ranil

Sep 2 (DM) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, who congratulated Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, said the new govt intended to introduce parliamentary oversight committees, a budget office and a new constitution. He said he believed the new Speaker would use his wide and long experience both as a diplomat and a politician and play the pivotal role as the custodian of parliamentary precepts and traditions in achieving these objectives. The people expected political parties to work together more..

Front row seat for MR

Sep 2 (CT) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa was seen occupying a front row seat in oppositions benches as the Eighth Parliament met for the first time yesterday. When MP Rajapaksa walked down the aisle to his seat in the opposition's front row, opposition MPs stood up as he passed as a mark of respect. A smiling Rajapaksa walked to the front row and took the seat between SLFP group leader Nimal Siripala de Silva and MP Sarath Amunugama. Front row in the govt ranks have been reserved more..

MS promises consensual governance

Sep 2 (Island) President Sirisena yesterday said his administration would introduce a new political culture and the country would be governed through consensus for the next two years. "This country has been ruled by two parties from time to time since Independence. One party ruled the country for 35 years and the other for 32 years. I hope to change this political culture and replace the two party system by a govt of consensus more..

Singapore model for Sri Lanka: Let's celebrate diversity

Sep 2 (DM) This week, our leaders are laying the foundation for a National Unity Govt with a new political culture based on the principles of consensual and consultative politics. President Maithripala Sirisena and PM Ranil Wickremesinghe say their goals include good governance, democracy and social justice, accountability and transparency in the framework of a society where plurality and diversity are celebrated. Many Sri Lankan leaders have spoken of a Singapore model. more..

Tracing the birth of the SLFP

Sep 2 (DM) Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) is generally considered as having been founded in 1951 on a socialist economic agenda and is habitually allied with nationalist Sinhala groups. In 1950, D. S. Senanayake was able to exploit the weaknesses of political forces against him to transform his govt into a stable entity from its fragile coalition two years before. The strong Marxist main opposition was divided on ideological disputes and personal differences. more..

Karu Jayasuriya: Speaker of 8th Parliament

Sep 2 (DM) Karu Jayasuriya who is considered a liberal democrat with gentlemanly politics has never got his image tarnished with allegations of corruption or misdeeds and comes from a respected business and plumbago mine owning family in Mirigama at Hapitigam Korale in Gampaha and is the eldest son of a five member family. Incidentally, the Speaker in the SL Parliament has more power bestowed on him more..

Toyota says cause of fire cannot be determined

Sept 2 (DM) Motor car bearing number KQ-6543 which was found with Wasim Thajudeen's body inside had been severely gutted by fire. A definite opinion as to whether the fire was due to an accident cannot be given, stated W. L. Wilson, the technical consultant of Toyota Lanka head office, in a letter addressed to Colombo Additional Magistrate Nishantha Peiris. This letter was in response to an order of the court. more..

Politicos, govt officials facing criminal charges return to face the music

Sep 2 (ST) A string of investigations against politicians and officials on allegations varying from murder to misuse of funds, continued this week, after some of them were suspended during the election period. The first to visit the FCID was MP Wimal Weerawansa’s wife, Shashi Weerawansa, when she was re-summoned by the FCID on August 20, for a statement regarding her assets. She was questioned on utility bills & details of her monthly income. more..

National Govt: The Public speaks out

Sep 2 (SL) The most peaceful general election held in this country in recent times ended on August 18. Since the majority of Sri Lankans accepted its mandate, they did not make few complaints against the manner in which the election was held and its results. However, the election results have given a mixed signal. No political party has been able to secure a clear majority. Nevertheless, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, more..

Sri Lanka prints over 100 billion rupees

Sept 2 (EN) Sri Lanka has printed over 100 billion rupees in the past three months to meet deficit spending, resist a market interest rates rise and contractions in the monetary base amid capital flight. Until June 2015, releases of cash tied up in term repo deals at the Central Bank which is also similar to money printing delayed interest rates from adjusting, despite the budget deteriorating sharply from Jan 2015 with more..

Vaiko seeks international probe into Lankan genocide

Sept 2 (ENS) MDMK general secretary Vaiko submitted a memorandum at the US Consulate General in Chennai urging the US govt to reconsider its decision to support a domestic probe into the genocide of Sri Lankan Tamils. However, the US Consul General, who initially gave an appointment to Vaiko, refused to meet him, the MDMK claimed in a press release here. Vaiko was also not allowed inside the Consulate, more..