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Looters as Rulers: President extends Bond commission's term until Dec 31

Dec 7 (DM) President Maithripala Sirisena has extended the term of the PCoL into the Central Bank Bond issuance by another 23 days until Dec 8th, 2017, President's office said. Commission was established on 27th Jan to investigate into the Issuance of Treasury Bonds during the period 1st Feb 2015 to 31st Mar, 2016. The period of the Commission has been extended several times and the last extension until tomorrow. more..

SriLankan Airlines employees agree to restructuring moves

Dec 7 (SL) All trade unions attached to SriLankan Airlines have expressed their solidarity to the management of the Airline, in supporting the restructuring efforts initiated by the Govt under the supervision of the Public Private Partnership (PPP) unit attached to the Ministry of Finance, SriLankan Airlines said. This was expressed by the representatives of the trade unions when they met Chairman Ajith Dias, more..

TELO leaves TNA

Dec 7 (DM) In what appeared to a further split of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO) decided to leave it to join hands with other Tamil parties to contest the LG elections. TELO’s politburo that met in Vavuniya on Tuesday took this decision. The 21 member presidium council of TELO concluded that, TELO could not be any more a co-traveller with the ITAK in the TNA. more..

JVP says President & 2 Ministers must resign

Dec 7 (NR) The JVP today called for the President and two other Ministers to vacate their posts. MP Bimal Ratnayake said the trio must resign from their posts due to the failure to effectively spend funds allocated from last year’s Budget. The MP requested all three Ministers including the Ministry that falls under the purview of the President to be removed from their posts under powers vested with Parliament. more..

Water shortages delay Sri Lanka investments

Dec 7 (EN) Sri Lanka’s efforts to attract more investments are being affected by a new threat, shortage of water, which has delayed plans for new factories by companies, the head of the island’s investment promotion agency said. “Water has become a very challenging issue,” BOI chairman Dumindra Ratnayaka said. “Even today we have challenges in existing industrial zones like Biyagama where we have a water shortage,” more..

Herath & Faizer clash over broken promises

Dec 7 (Island) JVP accused Minister Faiszer Musthapha of stirring up communalism. JVP MP Vijitha Herath, participating in the third reading stage debate on budget 2018,said that Musthapha’s promises shouldn’t be taken seriously. The JVP MP raised concerns about people in Sainthamaradu demanding a separate Pradeshiya Sabha for their area. At present Sainthamaradu is part of Kalmunai MC. more..

Video: Sajith wants death penalty given for killing tuskers

Dec 7 (AD) Minister Sajith Premadasa says that the hunting and killing of wild elephants is a very prominent business in the country and that the murder of notorious tusker Dala Puttuwa is not the first instance this has happened. “What is the punishment given for hunting a tusker? I clearly say that the death sentence should be given straightaway,” he said. Minister stated that although that is not the existing law more..

Reducing tax on Beer: Brewing company to enjoy financial benefits: GMOA

Dec 7 (DM) Govt’s attempt to reduce the tax on liquor through the Budget 2018 would only result in having financial benefits to the main brewing company in the country, which incurred huge losses in preceding years, GMOA charged. GMOA Secretary Dr. Haritha Aluthge said according to the annual reports of this brewing company for 2016/17, it had incurred a loss Rs. 1.4 billion whereas it had obtained a profit of Rs. 2 billion in 2015/16. more..

'Successive Sinhalese Govts Attempted to change demography'

Dec 7 (CT) Chief Minister of the Northern Province, Justice C.V. Wigneswaran says, Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekara's recent interview titled Wigneswaran should resign, needs to be replied. In his email response, to Admiral Weerasekera's answers to Ceylon Today The Interview of 23 Nov, Chief Minister has expressed his opinion, by taking each point he contradicts and has formulated his responses. more..

‘We’re very comfortable living with the majority community’

Dec 7 (DM) CWC General Secretary Arumugam Thondaman, in an interview, spoke about the current political environment and his plans to contest the elections. Q: How do you view the current political environment as the head of the CWC? A: Everybody is getting ready for the LG election. There are different groups. There are alliances already formed or being formed. This is going to be a very interesting election. more..

Who is really afraid of whom and why?

Dec 7 (DM) Way back in the year 1988 an island-wide poster stamped in the public conscious the notion of political teaser advertisements. It was a simple question: (Who is this [and] what is he doing? It did not come in colors associated with any of the major parties. It was in orange. It was duly followed by a response that began with [he] is the one [who]…) and went on to detail achievements and pledges. That was effectively the launch of R Premadasa’s presidential campaign. more..

Maithri, Ranil go up the hill

Dec 7 (DM) With legal issues being cleared, the Local Council Elections are now likely to be held in February with the possible date being February 10. Earlier the Elections Department had planned to hold elections to 90 councils because of a legal problem over the others and an interim stay order being issued by the Court of Appeal. Now the Elections Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya has said elections would be held on the same day to all 341 MCs, UCs and PSs. more..

Sports Minister to initiate disciplinary action on official responsible

Dec 7 (DN) Minister of Sports who is looking to initiate disciplinary action against the official responsible for sending nine Sri Lankan cricketers to India without prior approval from him, has called for a report and investigation into the incident. Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara said the official responsible would also have to personally bear the costs accrued due to the delay in flights. He explained that all sportsmen and women more..

Pregnant school girl: Noose hangs over school authorities

Dec 7 (DM) Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) has ruled that the fundamental rights of the girl who was accused of being pregnant and was ordered to be removed from school by the class teacher, school disciplinary board, teaching instructor and former principal of Sri Revatha Vidyalaya in Madatugama had been violated. HRCSL had directed the Director Education of North Central Province to hold an inquiry against those involved in making this hasty decision more..

Bond Commission report to Prez tomorrow

Dec 7 (DM) The report of the PCoI into the Bond Issuance is scheduled to be handed over to President Maithripala Sirisena tomorrow. Commission was appointed by him to begin an inquiry into the issuance of Bonds that took place during the time period Feb 1, 2015 to March 31, 2016. The report that is to be handed over to President Sirisena was compiled based on the evidence gathered by the PCoI after a process that lasted 10 months. more..

Duo preventing SLFP reunification: Dayasiri

Dec 7 (DN) Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara cast blame on two key persons in the Joint Opposition (JO) for derailing negotiations between the Podujana Peramuna led by former President Rajapaksa and the SLFP led by President Sirisena. “One of them wants to become leader in another 20 years, so he wants the split to continue,” he said. According to Jayasekara, Mahinda Rajapaksa, Basil Rajapaksa and more..

Thilanga to hold SLC Presidency till 2019 ?

Dec 7 (CT) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) is set to hold a Special General Meeting (SGM) with the intention of seeking approval from their member clubs to continue the present administration for two more years and bypass the Annual General Meeting due in 2018. When inquiries were made about this development, a SLC Management Committee Member stated that an Emergency Executive Committee Meeting was to be held last night to take a final decision regarding the SGM. more..

GMOA writes to President

Dec 7 (DN) GMOA has sent a letter to President Sirisena requesting him to intervene by providing a final solution for the SAITM issue, which should be acceptable to all relevant parties, GMOA Secretary Dr. Haritha Aluthge said. He said that that the letter sent to President with the signatures of GMOA President Dr. Anuruddha Padeniya and himself. The copies of the letter had been sent to the PM, Cabinet Ministers, MPs, Dr. Harsha De Silva and all the other relevant state officials. more..

Treasury bond scam probe: Can commission meet Dec. 8 deadline?

Dec 7 (Island) The PCoI that probed the treasury bond scams involving now suspended primary dealer Perpetual Treasuries had received further submissions from various parties to the inquiry. The Central Bank suspended Perpetual Treasuries in July for a six- month period. Counsel for PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, who appeared before the commission on Nov 20, last day of sittings, more..

Retired police chiefs unanimously object to devolving Law and Order to PCs

Dec 7 (Island) Association of Chiefs of Police (Rtd.) of Sri Lanka has come out strongly against the proposal to completely devolve to the Provincial Councils the subject of Law and Order made by the Steering Committee of the Constituent Assembly through its recent Interim Report presented to parliament by the Prime Minister. The ACP motion rejecting the proposal to devolve Law and Order, which had been unanimously approved by its membership at their AGM on Nov 25 more..

DCS conducts first ever Survey on Time Use

Dec 7 (Island) Department of Census and Statistics (DCS) has commenced the first ever Survey on Time Use in Sri Lanka to compile information on the amount of time people spend doing various activities, such as paid work, childcare, volunteering, socializing, and household work etc. About 6400 households have been selected for this Survey using standard sampling methods to cover the entire country. The DCS povides various socio economic and demographic statistics to data users more..

SL’s Prosperity Index continues to improve

Dec 7 (CT) Sri Lankan Prosperity Index (SLPI) and all its sub-indices except for the Socio-Economic Infrastructure continued to improve, with the main index gaining 61 index points to 0.746 points in 2016 from 0.685 points in the 2015. The SLPI measures and compares the level of prosperity of the country and across its provinces. According to CB data the Economy and Business Climate sub index gained 44 points more..

Discipline in all sectors required to take country towards development: President

Dec 7 (FT) President Sirisena said that discipline across all sectors was essential to take the country towards development. “That discipline should start from politicians and extended to every sector,” he added. President was addressing a batch of Samurdhi officers who were getting leadership training at the Infantry Training Center in Minneriya. President, who arrived in Polonnaruwa on 5 Dec to participate in several programs, made a sudden visit to the Infantry Training Center. more..

Illegal activities: Navy apprehends 23 persons

Dec 7 (Island) The Navy apprehended 23 persons engaged in illegal acts at several locations in the country during the past few days––three for possessing Kerala cannabis, one for possessing intoxicating drugs, one for keeping counterfeit money, one for having heroin, two for killing dolphins, two for transporting sandalwood logs and 13 for illegal fishing. Acting on a tip-off, naval personnel attached to the Western Naval Command, in coordination with STF officers attached to more..

Sri Lanka gaining from improving global economy: CB Chief

Dec 7 (FT) CB Governor Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy said the global economy had a number of tailwinds for SL, while insisting on the need to focus on mitigating the negative impacts of international interest rates. He asserted that the world economy seemed to be in better shape, providing a better set of external circumstances of tailwinds for SL, and considering all the macroeconomic factors, it provides more..

Last-minute amendments to H’tota Concession Agreement

Dec 7 (FT) With just days to go before the handover of the Hambantota Port to its Chinese investor, Cabinet yesterday approved more amendments to the Concession Agreement with regards to changes in the ownership share structure that would be established after the takeover by the Chinese entity. The new amendments to the Concession Agreement for the Hambantota Port by a Public-Private Partnership between the SL Ports Authority, Govt of SL, China Merchants Ports Holdings, more..

Senior Interbrand leaders to attend inaugural best SL brands on 11 Dec

Dec 7 (FT) Interbrand, the world’s largest and most influential brand consultancy, will introduce Best Sri Lankan Brands, an extension of its world renowned Best Brands list, at an exclusive ceremony on 11 December at the Colombo Hilton. The ranking, which identifies the most valuable brands in Sri Lanka, is modelled on Interbrand’s prestigious Best Global Brands annual report, the definitive guide to the world’s 100 most valuable brands. Senior leaders from the Interbrand leadership more..

Will changes in Sri Lanka’s property laws open the floodgates to developers?

Dec 7 (FT) The release last month of SL govt’s 2018 budget sent a ripple of excitement along the country’s south coast, where a modest number of sun-seeking expats have been renovating beachside villas and opening boutique hotels since the civil war ended in 2009. The budget furthers president Maithripala Sirisena’s plans to boost foreign investment and trade, and continues to unpick the confusing property restrictions that more..

Showbiz icon wins LMD’s Sri Lankan Of The Year award

Dec 7 (FT) Pioneering business magazine LMD has announced that its Sri Lankan Of The Year for 2017 is actress and entrepreneur Jacqueline Fernandez. The magazine pays tribute to the Bollywood superstar, whom it says has brought a refreshing breath of fresh air amid the pollution we’re accustomed to dealing with. “We can now claim a Bollywood superstar who has not only risen to A-list status in a relatively short time but also highlighted SL’s better side through activities that more..

Tourist arrivals marginally up in November; Still short of revised target

Dec 7 (CT) Sri Lanka needs more than 428,000 tourists during December to achieve this year's revised target of 2.3 million visitors. The country has welcomed nearly 1.87 million travellers during the eleven-month period ended November this year. During the 11 months, tourist arrivals increased 2.5% to 1.871,871, from 1,826,041 recorded during the same period last year. During November this year, SL welcomed 167,511 tourists to the country, up a sluggish 0.2% from 167,217 a year ago. more..

I almost moved to Australia when I was not selected: Roshen

Dec 7 (DN) Test debutant Roshen Silva spoke about the time when he almost threw in the towel and moved to Australia when he got so frustrated at not being picked to play for SL. 29-year-old right-hander from Ragama had been consistently knocking on the door for selection with his outstanding form in the domestic competition scoring over 6500 runs in 104 first-class matches with 18 centuries. more..

Eminent Sri Lankan professionals address Auditor General’s Forum in Maldives

Dec 7 (Island) Auditor General’s Forum is the Maldives’ national platform for all professional auditors and accountants to address strategic issues that are shaping the operating environment of organizations today and gain insights to effectively manage the associated risks of business. Invited to address the gathering were eminent Sri Lankan professionals Arjuna Herath, Senior Partner Ernst & Young and Michel Nugawela, Partner Interbrand Sri Lanka & CEO of MND. more..

Infrastructure development: SL ranked 73rd

Dec 7 (DN) Sri Lanka’s success in developing basic infrastructure such as a road network density of 98% is highest in highest in South Asia according to the Global Competitiveness Index in FY17. Sri Lanka is ranked as 73rd out of 138 countries for infrastructure development making SL an attractive destination for private investment. The international Finance Corporation (IFC) which also highlighted this in their South Asian report says that SL’s road transport infrastructure is concentrated more..

Darun Nusra Orphanage child abuse case

Dec 7 (CT) Following revelations regarding the incidents of child sexual abuse at the Darun Nusra orphanage in Dehiwala, which are presently being investigated by the crimes division of the Boralesgamuwa Police, allegations of complicity have been levelled against officers of the Western Province Department of Probation and Childcare Services. Meanwhile, a group of various humanitarian org, activists & volunteers, more..

Hathurusinghe to assume duties this month

Dec 7 (CT) Former SL cricketer and Bangladeshi coach, Chandika Hathurusinghe, will assume duties as the head coach of Sri Lankan National Cricket Team later this month, Minister of Sports Dayasiri Jayasekera said yesterday. Hathurusinghe returned to the country recently after resigning from his position as the Bangladeshi coach. Last month President of SLC Thilanga Sumathipala told Ceylon Today that a head coach for the SL National team will be selected by December. more..

Sri Lanka to host APF Annual Events 2017

Dec 7 (DM) Conducting of Asian Packaging Federation (APF) events in Sri Lanka this year is of great significance to the packaging fraternity in our country as the incumbent President of Sri Lanka Institute of Packaging (SLIP), Rohan Victoria who is the senior Vice President of APF is expected to be elected as the next President of the Federation and will assume duties from 1st Jan 2018. Rohan Victoria will be the third person from Sri Lanka to adorn this Prestigious position as more..