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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..

Septuagenarian sits GCE O/L

Dec 10 (Island) A unique feature at this year’s GCE O/L exam was a septuagenarian sitting it. Information and Communication Technology. She is 73-year-old N.S. Kalyani, a retired CWE employee and a resident of Nadugala, Matara. She said that she had sat the exam not with a view to seeking employment but to keeping abreast with the new trends and developments in society. Kalyani said that she hoped to sit the same exam offering Electronics and Hindi language as subjects next year. more..

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 their local agents ABC Shipping 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..

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 prefer 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 their opposition at any moment, he said. 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). The medicines, which were produced at the SPC’s Ratmalana facility, included Paracetamol, antibiotics, and medicine for diabetes. 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..

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. Commenting to Nation he said that the initial idea was triggered due to a personal experience at the time he served in the opposition. 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 Free Trade Agreement (FTA) already in operation. Former director general of commerce, P.D. Fernando said that the Department of Commerce should do it. 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 the poor countries most. 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," Mathews said. more..

Gammanpila to sue Ranjan for defamation

Dec 10 (DM) MP Udaya Gammanpila said today 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 the 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 and those who went on pilgrimage to Tamil Nadu. 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 Sri Lanka’s economic performance under the program supported by 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..

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 between saying and doing. 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, the conference has focused on common security themes in the Indian Ocean littorals, 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..

'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. Also the minority communities must be quite aware of such agendas, 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 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..

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 the usual feeling of being victims 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..

Half Sri Lanka’s public procurement contracts are corrupt: President

Dec 9 (AFP) Half of Sri Lanka’s public procurement contracts are tainted by bribery and corruption, President Maithripala Sirisena said, nearly two years after he came to power promising to tackle govt graft. President, who has ordered investigations into alleged widespread corruption under his predecessor, said he could not name names because those exposed would go on strike from tomorrow. more..

Minister Dayasiri asks Can journalists join shady media institutions?

Dec 9 (CT) Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera said that he knows for a fact that no journalist is prepared to have blood on his hands and he wondered how any media personnel could take up employment in media institutions which have been established with money stolen from the people of the country. He said the best name for the media that is about to be launched is Bendhumkaraya, adding "before long we will reveal the names of these media institutions. We will tell the people who they are, more..

Grade Five Scholarship: Cut-off marks released

Dec 9 (DN) Ministry of Education released the cut-off marks for the Grade 5 Scholarship examination. (See below for full list) Sinhala Medium – Boys’ Schools Royal College, Colombo – 184 Dharmaraja College, Kandy – 181 Ananda College, Colombo – 180 Maliyadeva College, Kurunegala – 180 Richmond College, Galle – 179 Nalanda College, Colombo – 178 Kingswood College, Kandy – 178 D.S. Senanayake College, Colombo – 176 Isipathana College, Colombo – 173 more..

Fooling people with empty words: Good Governance is no joke: President

Dec 9 (PSL) President Sirisena says the most important decision in the process of preventing and eliminating the bribery, corruption and malpractices, is to avert circumstances which provide an environment for corrupt practices, rather than punishing the offenders.  He made these remarks addressing National Anti-Corruption Conference today, in parallel to International Anti-Corruption Day. more..

Indian garment N Fabric Expo in Sri Lanka

Dec 9 (FF) Indian Garment N Fabric Expo (IGFE) 2017 will kick off from January 7 in Colombo. 3-day exhibition will witness participation of exhibitors from India doing business in readymade garments, fabrics, ladies wear and gents wear among others. It is an opportunity for B2B firms to connect with the consumers of Sri Lanka. IGFE 2017 will also host live fashion show on all three days of the programme. The B2B exhibition that is open to the public will be organised by more..

CPC makes Rs75bn in profits up to Dec 2016

Dec 9 (EN) Sri Lanka's state-run CEB has made a profit of 75 billion rupees up to December 2016, helped by lower petroleum prices, Minister Chandima Weerakkody said. Weerakkody told parliament that the utility had made a profit of 69.5 billion rupees up to September 2016, despite cutting prices. The CPC had also cut loans to state banks from 373 billion rupees at the end of 2015, to 282 billion rupees by end August 2016. Lower outstanding loans also reduces interest costs. more..

'Hambantota Harbour has only been leased'

Dec 9 (NR) The govt today said the present administration has made a strategic decision to convert the Hambantota Harbour into an income generating enterprise by entering into an agreement with a private entity. Minister Malik Samarawickrama issuing a communiqué said Sri Lanka will retain the ownership of the Harbour adding an agreement has been reached on a 99-year lease with a Chinese company. more..

Prez urged to take decision regarding IGP?

Dec 9 (AD) Constitutional Council (CC) has decided to launch an inquiry with regard to the behavior of the country’s Inspector General of Police (IGP) and take suitable action afterwards, political sources said.  The Constitutional Council, a 10-member constitutional authority tasked with maintaining independent commissions in Sri Lanka  and monitoring it affairs, convened today and had reportedly discussed IGP Pujitha Jayasundara’s questionable behavior and actions.  more..

Burqa in exam hall: 16 students refuse to remove veil, leading to tense situation

Dec 9 (AM) A heated debate erupted at the St Mary Exam Centre in Nawalapitiya as 16 students were not permitted to enter the exam hall by Chief Officer in Charge as they had refused to remove their veils. The parents of the students claim that their children were not able to sit to the exam properly as they were ordered to remove the veil, which caused them mental distress. This incident took place on Dec 7. The parents had even complained to the Minister of Education. more..

Cocaine haul worth Rs 12 billion; South Asia’s largest: Police

Dec 9 (DM) About 800 kilograms of cocaine with an estimated value of Rs.12 billion was detected on board an Indian-bound vessel docked in Colombo Harbour today following a tip off received by the Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB). DIG Ajith Rohana said that the cocaine which was concealed inside a container loaded with teak logs was reportedly the largest quantity of cocaine detected so far in SL and the South Asia. more..

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