Untitled Document
January 17, 2018 [GMT]
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President has no moral right to extend term of office: Basil
[Friday 2018-01-12 18:00]

Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) frontliner Basil Rajapaksa today said there was no moral basis for President Maithripala Sirisena to extend his term for six years as he committed himself to reduce the term in the run up to the elections . Mr. Rajapaksa told a news conference President Sirisena had claimed during his presidential election campaign that he would reduce the term of presidency to four years and would not seek to stay for six years.


President clarifies reason for seeking SC opinion
[Friday 2018-01-12 18:00]

President Maithripala Sirisena made a reference to the Supreme Court to ascertain whether he can serve in office for six years because there were divergent views on his term limit in civil and political circles, his office said in a statement. The statement said the President had sought the opinion of the Supreme Court as otherwise it could lead to confusion. The statement said his predecessors had also made similar references to the Supreme Court in this manner. It said it was a right guaranteed in the Constitution.


President Sirisena can hold office for six years - AG tells SC
[Thursday 2018-01-11 18:00]

President Maithripala Sirisena can hold office for six years from January 9, 2015, the Attorney General told the Supreme Court today (11). Giving his opinion regarding the President's term of office, Attorney General Jayantha Jayasuriya told court that the mandate given to President Sirisena at the last Presidential Election was for six years. This cannot be changed by bringing in new legislation but would require a new mandate from the people and Parliamentary approval, he added.


Top Uva politician forced principal to kneel: CHRR
[Thursday 2018-01-11 18:00]

The Centre for Human Rights and Research (CHRR) today requested the Education Ministry to look into an incident in Badulla where a top provincial level politician in Uva had forced a school principal to kneel. In a letter to the Ministry Secretary, CHRR Executive Director Keerthi Tennakoon said they have received information that this politician had summoned a principal of a Tamil girls school in Badulla and forced her to kneel after she refused to follow his orders.


UN child rights committee in Geneva to review Sri Lanka
[Thursday 2018-01-11 18:00]

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child is meeting in Geneva from 15 January to 2 February to review children’s rights in Sri Lanka, Guatemala, Panama, Seychelles, Spain, Solomon Islands, Palau and Marshall Islands. The Committee, which is composed of 18 independent experts, monitors how States that have ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) are complying with their obligations.


India, Sri Lanka sign agreement for US$ 45 million financial assistance to develop Kankasanthurai harbor
[Thursday 2018-01-11 17:00]

Sri Lanka and India today signed an agreement to provide Indian loan assistance of US$ 45.27 million (Rs. 6.9 billion) to upgrade the Kankasanthurai Harbor in Jaffna in the North. Secretary, Ministry of Finance and Mass media Dr. R H S. Samaratunga on behalf of Sri Lanka and Managing Director of the Export- Import Bank of India Mr. David Rasquinha signed the agreement in New Delhi today.


Date scheduled to issue postal voting ballot papers postponed
[Thursday 2018-01-11 17:00]

The Elections Commission has postponed the date scheduled to handover postal voting ballot papers to the Postal Department for the upcoming Local Government polls to January 13. The Batticaloa district will be exempted from the decision. This year 560,536 government workers are eligible to cast postal votes, he said.


Sri Lanka removes ban on sale of alcohol to women
[Thursday 2018-01-11 17:00]

Sri Lanka is to allow women over the age of 18 to buy alcohol legally for the first time in more than 60 years. The government said that it was amending a 1955 law that it agreed was discriminatory against women. The amendment to the law, announced on Wednesday, also means that women will be permitted without prior approval to work in places that sell alcohol.


Four killed in Mankulam accident
[Wednesday 2018-01-10 18:00]

Four people died in a collision between a van and a parked lorry in Mankulam yesterday night, the Police said. The injured had been rushed to the Killinochchi Hospital but were pronounced dead in admittance. The driver of the lorry was arrested by the Police in connection with incident and they are conducting further investigations.


‘Clash of MPs’ in Parliament Top News
[Wednesday 2018-01-10 18:00]

Government and joint opposition members are reported to have clashed in Parliament this morning. Deputy Minister Harsha De Silva said in a tweet, ‘I am told that never in history had there been a brawl in the Chamber like the one just now. I saw Gamini Lokuge start it. Disgraceful,’ He also tweeted, ‘Utter pandemonium in Parliament. Apparently someone threw an object at the PM while he was speaking in the Chamber. Didn’t see who it was. Disgraceful,’


Five judge bench to decide on President’s term in office
[Wednesday 2018-01-10 18:00]

A five judge bench has been appointed by the Supreme Court to decide on President Maithripala Sirisena’s term in office. President Maithripala Sirisena had earlier sought the advise of the Supreme Court on the term of his office. The President had asked the Supreme Court if there is any impediment to continue in the office of President for a period of 6 years from 09th January 2015, the date on which the results of the election was declared.


Kachchatheevu church feast on 23 Feb
[Wednesday 2018-01-10 18:00]

The feast of St. Anthony's church on the Kachchatheevu island will be held on 23 and 24 February. Around 10,000 devotees form Sri Lanka are expected to participate in the festival, Jaffna District Secretary Nagalingam Vethanayagan said.


Mano Ganeshan issues challenge to Ravi Karunanayake
[Wednesday 2018-01-10 18:00]

Minister of National Co-existence Dialogue and Official Languages Mano Ganeshan has issued a challenge to former Minister Ravi Karunanayake. Ganeshan said in a post on his Facebook that Karunanayake has warned that his political party will be thrown out of Colombo. “Hahaha, I am scared. If you can do it and show,” Ganeshan said. Karunanayaka and Ganeshan are engaged in a bitter battle ahead of the upcoming Local Government elections.


Election Monitor condemns polls law violations at Temple Trees
[Wednesday 2018-01-10 18:00]

The Election Monitor Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) alleges that the Ministry of Education has used the Prime Minister’s official residence, Temple Trees, for election propaganda purposes. It has written to the Secretary to the Prime Minister not to allow anyone to use Temple Trees for electioneering purposes.


Tamils protest outside Swiss court against case on LTTE supporters
[Tuesday 2018-01-09 18:00]

Over 150 Tamils protested outside a Swiss court today against a trial involving thirteen LTTE financiers. The protesters held posters of the LTTE and its slain leader Vellupillai Prabakaran and made statements in support of a separate Tamil state in Sri Lanka. Thirteen financiers accused of funnelling more than CH15 million ($15.3 million) to the LTTE stood trial before the Swiss Federal Criminal Court today.


Ex-LTTE spokesman assaulted in Jaffna
[Tuesday 2018-01-09 18:00]

A man was arrested by the Jaffna Police in connection with assaulting former LTTE media spokesman Daya Master in Jaffna yesterday. Daya Master who is also the Media Director of DAN TV, a private media institution was assaulted in his office at the Hospital Road in Jaffna. The Jaffna Police who had initiated an inquiry following a complaint had arrested the suspect, Moses Sathgunadas (53) a resident of Jaffna. Police said the motive of the assault has not been revealed. Suspect to be produced before the Jaffna Magistrate Court.


Victor Ratnayaka’s wife arrested
[Tuesday 2018-01-09 18:00]

Hashini Amendra, the wife of veteran singer Victor Ratnayake, was arrested by the Tangalle Police this morning for the alleged misappropriation of Rs. 1.28 million worth of jewelry belonging to a state bank. Police said the manager of the said state bank had lodged a complaint with the police against the 32-year-old for the crime she allegedly committed during her time as an employee of the pawning section of the bank during 2012- 2016.


Postal Votes to be handed over to Postal Department on Jan. 11
[Tuesday 2018-01-09 18:00]

The Election Commission said that postal votes for Local Government Elections will be submitted to the Postal Department, on January 11. Acting Election Commissioner M.M. Mohamed said that the name lists of government workers who are eligible to cast postal votes were certified at the District Election Office yesterday. This year 560,536 government workers are eligible to cast postal votes, he said. Postal Votes could to be cast at Election Offices, District Secretariats and at Police Stations on January 22 and at other Government Institutions, postal votes could to be casted on January 25 and 26.


Ex-navy spokesman, five others get bail
[Tuesday 2018-01-09 18:00]

Former navy spokesman D.K.P. Dassanayake and five others, held in remand custody, were granted bail by the High Court today. Commodore Dassanayake and the others were arrested and remanded on charges of aiding and abetting in the abduction of 11 youths in 2008 and 2009. High Court Judge Manilal Waidyaratne released each of the six accused on a cash bail of Rs.100,000 with three sureties of Rs.1 million each.


Sending LTTE/Prabhakaran greeting cards via Fb Court remands duo
[Tuesday 2018-01-09 18:00]

Colombo Additional Magistrate Thanuja Jayathunga yesterday (8) ordered two suspects charged with displaying and distributing the emblem of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam organization and the photo of its late Leader V. Prabhakaran, by way of greeting cards for 2018 on Facebook, to be remanded till 17 January.


Special Parliamentary session on Jan. 10
[Monday 2018-01-08 18:00]

A special sitting of Parliament would be convened on January 10 following a request made by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, Acting Secretary General of Parliament Neil Iddawala said today. Political parties such as the Joint Opposition and Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) had requested Speaker Jayasuriya to convene an urgent session of the House after President Maithripala Sirisena made a statement on the recommendations made by the Presidential Commission that investigated the bond scam.


PM wants parliament summoned to debate bond probe report
[Monday 2018-01-08 18:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickreme-singhe said yesterday that he would request Speaker Karu Jayasuriya to summon Parliament fast to debate the Presidential Commission Report on the issuance of Treasury Bonds between February 2015 and March 2016. Addressing the UNP’s 70th anniversary celebrations at Campbell Park in Borella, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe stressed that the UNP was committed to upholding the rule of law and good governance. "I will ask the Speaker to convene Parliament as early as possible so that the House could discuss the Bond Commission Report," the PM said, adding that an investigation into Treasury bonds issued between 2008 and 2014 should also be conducted.


Bond scam loss burden placed on public through higher taxes – Mahinda
[Monday 2018-01-08 18:00]

Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says the loss caused by treasury bond scam was much bigger than the amount stated in the report of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into the bond scam. Addressing the Sri Lanka Podu Jana Peramuna’s inaugural rally in Kadawatha on Saturday, the former President said that he had serious doubts about the amount of loss mentioned in the report and was sure that the country suffered a very much larger loss than the amount mentioned by the commission.


Birth rate increases in Jaffna
[Monday 2018-01-08 18:00]

The birth rate in Jaffna had increased by 12 percent last year (2017) according to the Jaffna Teaching Hospital sources. The hospital sources said that total number of child births has been recorded as 5,746 last year (2017) and this is 12 percent more compared to that of 2016. The infant deaths have also been recorded less in year 2017, hospital sources said.


President hasn’t used his sword well- Gammanpila
[Monday 2018-01-08 18:00]

President Maithripala Sirisena had not used his sword well to trap the real culprits of bond scam, General Secretary of Pivithuru Hela Urumaya (PHU), MP Udaya Gammanpila said today. Some party members of PHU including Udaya Gammanpila, Madumadawa Aravinda and Dammika Rathmale were seen today at the media briefing wearing clothes in black and carrying a sword in their hands.


Moragahakanda reservoir declared open
[Monday 2018-01-08 18:00]

Moragahakanda reservoir was declared open by President Maithripala Sirisena a short while ago. The Moragahakanda Dam is a high gravity dam with a height of 65 meters.The dam has created the Moragahakanda Reservoir, which has an active storage capacity of 521,000,000 cubic meters, and is four times bigger than the gigantic Parakrama Samudraya in Polonnaruwa.


671 acres earmarked in Mullaitivu for new Sri Lankan navy base
[Saturday 2018-01-06 18:00]

The Sri Lankan government acknowledged the planned acquisition of 671 acres of land in Mullaitivu is in order the establish a central navy base. In response to a Right To Information request made by the editor of Vikalpa, Sampath Samarakoon, the Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Lands and Parliamentary Reforms, Mr Dayaratne stated the land grab was in order to “establish the Mullaitivu main camp of the Sri Lanka navy”.


Flu in Mullaithivu- People asked not to panic
[Saturday 2018-01-06 18:00]

Northern Province Health Ministry Specialist Dr. R. Keseven urges people of the Mullaithivu area not to panic over the flu reported from the area. He said the special team deployed by the Health Ministry had identified that the disease was Influenza B. “The disease is curable, and it can be controlled easily, they said. However, 10 people died of the disease so far, sources said..

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