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Protest at H'tota port takes ugly turn: Japanese vehicle carrier, crew held

Dec 10 (Island) Hambantota port workers held a Japanese vehicle carrier Hyperion Highway and its crew for four days in protest against the proposed agreement between the govt and state owned China Merchants Port Holdings Company to operate the port as a public-private partnership. Hyperion Highway is one of the largest vehicle carriers in the world. Ship’s owner Kawasaki Kisen Kiasha has sought immediate intervention of more..

Treasury Bonds scam AG recommends criminal, civil action

Dec 10 (CT) The PM's Office said, the Attorney General (AG) has recommended that legal action could be instituted against former Governor of the CM Arjun Mahendran and the firm Perpetual Treasuries as criminal as well as civil cases related to the CB Bond scam. AG Jayanthi Jayasuriya had submitted the aforementioned recommendations after PM Ranil Wickremesinghe had forwarded COPE and the AG's reports on the CB Bond scam to him for his perusal and recommendations. more..

Dayasiri still baffled over IGP’s Sir Dilan hints the person is a Nilame

Dec 10 (CT) Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekera said he is still baffled on the word 'Sir' used by Police Chief, Pujitha Jayasundera during a telephone conversation at a public ceremony recently. "It was not the President or the Prime Minister at the other end of the line. Then who was this 'Sir' trying to influence a Police criminal investigation? That is the question I have", Minister Jayasekera asked during a media briefing on Thursday. more..

Mahinda, Ranil, Sampanthan discuss constitutional reforms

Dec 10 (Island) A special meeting attended by PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, former President Rajapaksa, Opposition leader R.Sampanthan and JO members was held at the PM’s Office at Parliament yesterday to discuss the proposed constitutional reforms. Former President Rajapaksa and Joint Opposition members said that the govt should first reveal what its proposals. They asked how they could comment on anything more..

Authorities should brief leaders on why FTA failed: Expert

Dec 10 (DM) Against the backdrop of high authorities speaking in favour of the Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ETCA), an international trade practitioner said that the relevant authorities should brief the country’s leadership on the reason for the current and past market access issues, and the trade imbalance under the FTA already in operation. Former director general of commerce, P.D. Fernando said that the Department of Commerce should do it. more..

‘Govt must allow use of weedisides in tea sector’

Dec 10 (DN) SL Tea Trader’s Association Chairman, Anslem Perera reiterated the sentiments expressed by Minister Navin Dissanayake on the use of weedisides for the tea plantations. He said that unlike some of the other agriculture crops, the tea industry does not use weedisides in big volumes. “The reason is that if you use too much of weedisides it weakens the tea bush.” Perera explained that if weedisides were not used, manual labour (using mammoties) has to be used more..

Rate hike looms in 2017: IMF

Dec 10 (FT) IMF yesterday termed Sri Lanka’s performance under its Extended Fund Facility (EFF) broadly satisfactory and praised the Govt for exceeding targets in revenue collection but warned increasing external vulnerabilities could affect growth targets and warrant fresh tightening of rates in 2017.  On 18 Nov 2016, the Executive Board of the IMF completed the first review of SL’s economic performance under more..

Tissa scoffs at rumours

Dec 10 (CT) Former General Secretary of the UNP Tissa Attanayake yesterday denied rumours that he was seeking an official position in the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) and is on the verge of joining it. He said that he has been receiving invitations to join various political parties and organizations, but had not yet made a definite decision. Attanayake added that his life is tied up in politics and even though there was the need to take a political decision in the future, more..

Debt-burdened Colombo’s military decision—made under duress?

Dec 10 (AT) SL’s plans to purchase military transport planes are likely to see it opt for the China-manufactured Xian Y-20 heavy-lift aircraft. Its PM, Ranil Wickremesinghe, indicated his preference for Chinese transport aircraft in a recently. “I have traveled around in some of the Chinese transport planes we have,” he said. Going on to describe them as good workhorses Wickremesinghe said he would always underwrite Chinese military transport planes. We will buy two more, he added. more..

South African challenge exciting, says fit again Angelo

Dec 10 (Island) The national cricket team will take wing to South Africa tonight, on a tour that will last exactly two months. Sri Lanka play their final game of the tour on the 10th of February at Centurion. Captain Angelo Mathews, who missed the Zimbabwe tour due to a calf injury, has recovered and looks fitter and slimmer. "It has been a great few months to be honest. Very refreshing. I worked extremely hard on my fitness," more..

SL Navy celebrates its 66th anniversary

Dec 10 (SLN) The 66th anniversary of the Sri Lanka Navy which claims for an unblemished and illustrious history falls today, on 9th Dec 2016. While performing its noble service and being the golden fence around the nation, the SL Navy celebrates its 66th Navy Day giving prominence to religious activities, social welfare activities and time-honoured naval customs and traditions. All these Navy Day programmes were initiated under the expert guidance and directives of more..

73-year-old sits for ICT O/L paper

Dec 10 (DN) N.S. Karunawathi, 73, sat for the GCE O/L Information and Communication Technology paper yesterday. Karunawathi, a retired employee at the CWE and a resident of Nadugala, said she applied to sit for the paper to test her knowledge on ICT which was a subject introduced to the curriculum recently. At 73, Karunawathi is the oldest candidate to sit for the 2016 GCE O/L exam at the Ilma College Exam Centre and possibly the whole island. “I hope to sit for the Electronics and more..

Kiriella assails JO hypocrisy

Dec 10 (DN) It was the hypocrisy of the Joint Opposition (JO) to urge people to protest at the Hambantota Port at a time when the President and the PM have come to a decision with the Chinese govt to setup a massive Industrial Zone in Hambantota, Minister Lakshman Kiriella said. He made this observation in response to a query made by MEP leader Dinesh Gunawardena on the protest at the Hambantota Port. more..

Proposed center periphery relations

Dec 10 (Island) Of the six Sub-committee reports the report on Center Periphery Relations is the main plank of the devolution package and one of the three main planks of Constitutional reform, the other two being: Electoral Reform and the Structure of the State – whether Parliamentary or Presidential systems or as a combination of the two systems. The thrust of the recommendations in the Center Periphery report is to strengthen the periphery and weaken the centre. more..

Foreign currency dearth

Dec 10 (NS) A shortage of foreign currency notes especially United States Dollars has inconvenienced  many outbound travellers who plan to travel particularly during this holiday season. Institutions that are authorized to issue foreign currency such as banks are constrained by their constant inability to cater to the demands of their customers. Even though, international travellers are encouraged to use credit and debit cards and depend on internet banking, most of them more..

LSSP rejects Patali’s comments

Dec 10 (DN) The LSSP vehemently rejects the comments by Minister Champika Ranawaka in connection with the need of strongly suppressing people's protests in the future, LSSP Secretary Prof. Tissa Vitharana said. He said under the democratic system, the people have the sole right to protest and express their objection towards issue. The sovereignty is with the people. They appointed this govt and they can express more..

Govt allocates Rs. 45 b to import pharmaceutical drugs

Dec 10 (FT) Govt has allocated Rs. 45 billion to import necessary pharmaceutical drugs for the next year, according to Minister Rajitha Senaratne. Last year the allocation for this purpose was Rs. 35 billion. He disclosed this at an event this week to introduce to the market five new domestically-produced medicines by the State Pharmaceuticals Corporation (SPC). Medicines, which were produced at SPC’s Ratmalana facility, included Paracetamol, antibiotics, and medicine for diabetes. more..

Prophet Muhammed preached peace and harmony: PM

Dec 10 (Island) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has, in a message to mark the birth of Holy Prophet Muhammed (Sal), which Muslims worldwide would celebrate on Monday, said" "Prophet Muhammed recognized as the last Prophet of Islam, promoted peace and encouraged his adherents to do the same. "Followers of Islam believe that until he was called to serve God at the age of 40, he lived a life of piety and dignity. "He brought peace and unity to Medina, torn apart by tribal warfare and more..

Medical emergency? call 1990

Dec 10 (NS) The Ministry of Health recently announced an emergency number to call an ambulance in case of an emergency. The public is requested to call 1990 during a medical emergency. This is a toll-free number that offers 24-hour service. This service is a concept of Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr Harsha de Silva. He said that the initial idea was triggered due to a personal experience at the time he served in the opposition. more..

A country free of corruption: An urgent need

Dec 10 (Island) UN has declared Dec 9 as the Anti-corruption Day. It says corruption is a serious crime that can undermine social and economic development in all societies. This year it has focused its campaign on how corruption affects education, health, justice, democracy, prosperity and development. Corruption is found in all countries in the world, both rich and poor. It’s a serious crime that can undermine social and economic development in all societies, while hurting more..

President presents Gold Cup Volleyball Championship awards

Dec 10 (PSL) The awards ceremony of the President’s Gold Cup Volleyball Championship – 2016 was held yesterday (7) at the stadium of the National Youth Center in Maharagama, under the patronage of President Sirisena. Celebrating the centaury of introducing the volleyball to SL, book Sri Lanka Volleybolayata Siyawask, written by Susil Ranasinghe, former Secretary to the SL Volleyball Association was presented to the President at this occasion. more..

State Minister distributes Virusara Privilege Cards in Ganemulla

Dec 10 (MoD) State Minister Ruwan Wijewardene was the Chief Guest at the Virusara privilege card distribution held at the Commando Regimental Center in Ganemulla today (9). Secretary to Ministry of Defence Karunasena Hettiarachchi and Secretary to State Ministry of Defence APG Kithsiri were also present at the occasion. Minister said that, Virusara card project was launched as a service and to offer tribute more..

Gammanpila to sue Ranjan for defamation

Dec 10 (DM) MP Udaya Gammanpila said that he would send a letter of demand to Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake demanding Rs. 500 million as compensation for allegedly making defamatory remarks against him. Mr. Gammanpila said that he was not admitted to the Prison Hospital during the time he was in remand, as claimed by the deputy minister. “According to Deputy Minister Ramanayake, I had faked to be sick and been admitted to prison hospital to enjoy privileges. more..

Jayalalithaa’s death a relief to Sri Lanka: JHU

Dec 10 (DM) JHU said that while they had expressed their condolences over the death of former TN Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa her death was a great relief to Sri Lanka. JHU national organizer Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe pointed out that the late chief minister was an anti-Sri Lankan leader who harassed Sri Lankans in India and always acted contrary to the interests of our country. “She harassed our Buddhists monks, players, businessmen, those who went on pilgrimage more..

From Kolam to Group songs, Baila to Bailatronics

Dec 10 (ST) Commercialisation’ of Sinhala music with the advent of ring-tone music and some new FM radio channels selling air time packages to play songs of present and past musical creations of singers have become an obstacle for the emergence of quality musical creations, an eminent panel of musicians claimed at a discussion in Colombo this week. Today the country’s music nurtured by dedicated and erudite musicians more..

300 families in Walawe reservation under threat

Dec 10 (NS) The Ambalantota Divisional Secretariat informed that the removal of 300 families, who according to them are illegal dwellers in the Walawe river reservation area, from the area was the solution to the preservation of the river and its water resource. The reservation is near the Ridiyagama boundary. Ambalantota Divisional Secretary, H. Thialakawardhana added that the majority of the families possess no deeds to the lands they occupy, he further added. more..

Sri Lanka’s quest for strategic prominence in the Indian ocean

Dec 10 (TD) Last week, Sri Lanka hosted the eighth iteration of the Galle Dialogue – a meeting of regional navies held every year at the eponymous southern coastal city. Over the past few years, the conference has emerged as an important fixture on the Asian maritime calendar, and a key venue for consultation and dialogue among senior naval officers from regional littoral states and beyond. Traditionally, conference has focused on common security themes in Indian Ocean littorals, more..


Editorial: NATO summit in Colombo

Dec 10 (Island) A NATO (No Action Talk Only) summit on corruption was held in Colombo. Fiery speeches and solemn pledges were made by politicians, who vowed to rid the country of bribery and corruption. Been there, done that! The road to hell is said to be paved with good intentions! Leaders of the incumbent govt have talked the talk for long enough and now it is time for them to walk the walk, but they are talking the talk once again. Many a pair of shoes is said to be worn out more..

Constitution and death threats

Dec 10 (NS) The need for a new constitution has already been accepted by almost all political parties in the country. Following the end of thirty years long bitter war the general expectation among the people has been to set aside the old differences and concentrate on developing the country. In this background, a new govt was voted into power with the idea of changing the political culture of the country. Adopting a new constitution is an important step in these developments. more..

'We respect Buddhism & Monks'

Dec 10 (CT) TNA MP Sathasivam Viyalendran said that the hate speech occurring in the Eastern Province against the minority communities is a pre-planned agenda by the representatives of the former regime. "We respect Buddhism and we respect Buddhist monks but a small number of them are trying to tarnish the reputation of the whole. We know that the majority are quite clear and aware of the planned agenda. more..

What a difference a phone call can make

Dec 10 (NS) Last week, there was a furore about a telephone call taken by IGP Pujith Jayasundera while he was at a public function. He was captured on camera assuring a caller he addressed as sir that nilame will not be arrested. IGP Jayasundera has so far taken a lot of flak for what happened. His conduct was questioned in Parliament. Unfortunately for him, President Sirisena happened to be in Parliament at that time. President took it upon himself to state that what the did was wrong and more..

Governance: On the bus! Or has it missed the bus?

Dec 10 (FT) By the time you read this, the long-suffering Sri Lankan commuters’ private bus strike would have been resolved – for want of a better concept to describe the shambles which such a resolution entailed. There’s been a host of compromising, the parties concerned – especially the chief executive – might say, on the road to my horizon. How Good Governance – for want of a better concept to describe the shambles which the republic encapsulates these days more..

They faced it all and they want others fighting cancer to do so too

Dec 10 (ST) We are the survivors! This is the message of hope and strength that they are shouting from the rooftops, so that each and everyone who is living with cancer or who has beaten what many believe, under a dreadful misconception, is a killer disease, can join them. Welcome to the recently-formed CAN-SUR-VIVE Trust, obviously punning on the word cancer. There is laughter and joking and not an inkling of more..

Anti-Muslim campaign again – Why?

Dec 10 (CT) I began the first part of this article by focusing on the point that the ongoing anti-Muslim campaign should be seen in the context of the global spread of what has come to be known as identity politics. Identity politics have such virulence and such spread today that the recrudescence of the anti-Muslim campaign, after a lull of a couple of years, is not at all surprising. These facts suggest that identity politics are not the sort of problem that can be expected to go away if it is ignored. more..

Requesting a permit to carry out crimes 

Dec 10 (CT) A lead thought by the USA on democracy and human rights is summed up by the quote, the right to swing my walking stick ends, where the other man’s nose begins. What can be assumed is that Americans are of the opinion that even concepts of freedom and democratic rights have limitations. To explain this further, freedom is not completely free. Under the guise of Union concerns, the GMOA maintains a massive mafia with the doctors and medical professionals. more..

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