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Federalism is not Separatism: the Supreme Court de-demonizes Federalism
Published Date: 07/11/2017 (Tuesday)
The Supreme Court determination in the Chandrasoma Vs Senathirajah case (SC Spl 03/2014 -Decided on 04/08/2017), this August, did not receive the public attention it deserved. The silence speaks volumes for a society that chooses to languish in ignorance by choice. The ongoing political debate on a new constitution does not seem to have absorbed the nutrition the judgment offers for a discourse on constitutional making. Yet for a national political psyche hegemonized by Unitarism for decades, the finding is unparalleled. The
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Parliament faulted for not taking up vital issue Lords Naseby’s call to revise Vanni death toll:
Published Date: 07/11/2017 (Tuesday)
Former Deputy Minister and retired Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekera yesterday said that a recent statement made by Lord Naseby in the House of Lords pertaining to the Vanni war death toll could be the basis for Sri Lanka’s defence at the Geneva based United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC). Addressing the media on behalf of Eliya, an organization backed by wartime Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, Weerasekera said Conservative Lord Naseby’s declaration
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Commander Takes a Look at Mali Bound Army Contingent-Owned Equipment Set to Sail
Published Date: 07/11/2017 (Tuesday)
Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander of the Army Tuesday (7) afternoon went to the Colombo port in order to see for himself how the Army’s Mali-bound consignment of Contingent Owned Equipment (COE), was being loaded to the vessel, scheduled to set sail in a day or two. The shipment with 55 containers, inclusive of self-sustained equipment, combat vehicle equipment, de-mining and explosive ordnance devices and various other logistic
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Seoul mayor speaks at Citynet convention Park says the city has a duty to share expertise in sustainability
Published Date: 07/11/2017 (Tuesday)
Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon said Seoul has a duty to share with the world its experiences in sustainable development, speaking at the quadrennial convention of Citynet in Sri Lanka on Monday to some 300 representatives and experts from nearly 50 member cities. “Through economic development, Seoul has embraced so many different challenges in regard to traffic congestion, building houses, water purification and so on,” said Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon
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Small group of monks misbehave: CBK
Published Date: 06/11/2017 (Monday)
Former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga said at a recent function that a small group of extremist Buddhist monks, under the cover of their robes, were sowing discord, racism and religious fanaticism among the people. She expressed these views at an event held at the BMICH on Wednesday to award prizes to the winners of the All-Island School Art and Essay Competition organised by the Office of National Unity & Reconciliation (ONUR) and the Bakeer Markar Centre for National Unity (BMCNU).
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Sri Lanka should remain a unitary State: Muslim Lawyers Association
Published Date: 06/11/2017 (Monday)
The Muslim Lawyers Association (MLA) stressed that Sri Lanka should remain a unitary State and there be no devolution of powers beyond the present devolution provided under the 13th Amendment. The views were expressed in setting out the MLA’s stance on the Interim Report of the Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly. In an outline of its views on the interim report, the MLA also notes Sri Lanka should be a unitary State and the term stressed in all languages.
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Non-Constitutional Requirements for Successful Implementation of Federalism
Published Date: 06/11/2017 (Monday)
The objective of this article is to emphasize the point that successful federalism requires a holistic approach encompassing not only constitution making but also effecting a transformation in the wider political culture. As Sri Lankan audience is new to the writings on federalism, I have made an effort to expose the readers to the wider discussion on the potential of federalism to resolve ethnonationalist problems in the world today. This is most relevant as the nation is engaged in an exercise of drafting a new constitution and federalism has been proposed by a segment of both the civil and political socieity as an ultimate solution to the ethnonationalist crisis in Sri Lanka.
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Constitutional evangelism and the interim report marathon
Published Date: 06/11/2017 (Monday)
The Government is lying to us big time and blatantly in its evangelical attempt at unethically converting Sri Lanka to a non-unitary state through a new, non-unitary Constitution, while the otherwise loudly vociferous JO did not/has so far not challenged that foundational lie in the Constitutional assembly debate. Why? Throughout the marathon debate the Government told the country that, for the first time ever, the TNA has accepted a unitary state/unitary Sri Lanka. On Wednesday Nov 8th, the pugilistic but utterly inattentive JO simply must ask "When? Where? Who?" The claim is a bluff or worse, a blatant lie. NOT ONCE in the debate
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Federalism, separatism nowhere near new Constitution
Published Date: 06/11/2017 (Monday)
UNP General Secretary and Public Enterprise Development Minister, Kabir Hashim commenting on the ongoing process to introduce a new Constitution, said, for the first time in the country’s history, the two major political parties are working together as a National Unity Government, and if the majority community is being represented by these two parties and there is consensus among them means a broader cross section of society abides by it. In an interview with the Sunday Observer, the Minister said, this is the first time we have a very
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Accommodative and conciliatory approach of TNA
Published Date: 06/11/2017 (Monday)
The speech made by Leader of the Opposition and Tamil National Alliance (TNA) R. Sampanthan at the Constitutional Assembly debate on the Steering Committee Interim Report in Parliament was more accommodative and inclusive in his approach with a broader outlook than the stance taken by the first Tamil Leader of the Opposition and Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) the late Appapillai Amirthalingam during his parliamentary days. Nothing but a separate Tamil state of Eelam had been the 'manthra' of the TULF from the time the Vaddukoddai Resolution was adopted in May 1976.
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Accountability Issues: Modernising PTA key – EU
Published Date: 06/11/2017 (Monday)
Acknowledging the difficulties involved in addressing accountability issues arising from the war, the European Union said on Thursday that as a first step, the Sri Lankan government could modernise its Prevention of Terrorism Act to meet international standards. Head of a delegation of the European Parliament Jean Lambert, addressing the media in Colombo, on the second day of their official visit said, "Modernising the PTA is the Key. We hope it would be done speedily, in keeping with the implementation of 27 International Conventions that the government agreed to, for GSP Plus to be restored last May."
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Forthcoming LG Polls MR forming broad anti-UNP alliance No discussions with the SLFP as long as it is protecting the UNP within the Govt – Mahinda
Published Date: 05/11/2017 (Sunday)
Indicating that the forthcoming Local Government polls, to be fought among three formations, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said, that he had already begun forming a broader political alliance with anti-United National Party (UNP) forces. Even though at the much hyped meeting of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), chaired by President Maithripala Sirisena, the Party decided to contest...the Local Government polls sans the UNP, Rajapaksa appeared to be not convinced. He was certain that there is no point in
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Premier FTZ union sets up Northern office
Published Date: 05/11/2017 (Sunday)
The Free Trade Zones and General Services Employees Union earlier this week opened its first office in the North at No. 39, Vairava Kovil Road, Vairavapuliyamkulam, Vavuniya. More than 150 workers from newly established garment factories in the North took part in the event. The office was ceremonially declared open by Assistant Commissioner of Labour, Vavuniya Ms. Siva Ranjanee and union Joint Secretary Anton Marcus with other union officials.
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PTL’s Rs. 10.5 billion frozen in Central Bank SC rejects FR plea; restrictions proposed by Monetary Board continue
Published Date: 05/11/2017 (Sunday)
Perpetual Treasuries Ltd (PTL)’s two bank accounts amounting to Rs. 10.5 billion — containing its profits from the questionable bond transactions — will remain frozen till January 2018 after the Supreme Court this week rejected PTL’s Fundamental Rights petition challenging the Monetary Board’s suspension of its primary dealer licence and the blocking of its accounts. An aggregate of Rs 10.5 billion in cash and bonds is contained in the two frozen accounts at the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL). The next logical step would be to launch civil action to recover the losses incurred by the Employees’ Provident Fund “due to collusive action
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FCID hunts for former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s chief of staff
Published Date: 05/11/2017 (Sunday)
The Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID) is on the lookout for Gamini Sedara Senarath, Chief of Staff of the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa, and three others over a string of alleged fraudulent acts. The three others are Piyadasa Kudabalage, Neil Bandara Hapuwinne and Mohan de Alwis. FCID detectives said yesterday that the four were evading arrest and hence, they had obtained a court order impounding the passport of the main suspect, Gamini Senarath, to prevent him from leaving Sri Lanka. The four persons now sought after — together with another two nominated by the Treasury — have been on the board of directors of Sino-Lanka Hotel and
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Sri Lanka’s post-war poverty trap
Published Date: 05/11/2017 (Sunday)
The recently-released findings of Sri Lanka’s Household Income and Expenditure Survey has revealed that eight years after the civil war ended, people in the war-hit north and east are gripped by poverty. Kilinochchi, the former rebel stronghold, has the highest level of poverty headcount at 18.2%, over four times the national average. The coastal district of Mullaitivu, which witnessed the gore of the final offensive that claimed an estimated 40,000 lives as the armed forces defeated the LTTE, has the country’s lowest median household income per month, at LKR 25,526 (about Rs. 10,000), significantly lesser
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Lord Nasbey defends Lanka in wake of botched statistics by UN commission
Published Date: 05/11/2017 (Sunday)
Providing an exclusive interview to media mogul WION, British Parliamentarian Lord Michael Morris, Baron Naseby stated that upon the research of classified military documents of the British government, he discovered that the casualty figure of 40,000 civilians killed during the latter stage of the civil war in Sri Lanka was a guess made by the Darusman commission set up by the UN to probe the civil war. Lord Naseby, who identifies himself as an old friend of Sri Lanka, stated that the actual
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Renuka Hotel to be quoted on CSE very shortly Management baton passing on to Ravi Thambiayah’s daughters
Published Date: 04/11/2017 (Saturday)
One of the country’s best known and best-run family hotels, the 40-roomed Renuka Hotel well known for the Jaffna cuisine it offers at its Palmyrah Restaurant will be quoted on the Colombo Stock Exchange within the next couple of weeks. The CSE announced last week that it had approved in principle the application submitted by Renuka Hotels Ltd., the owning company of the hotel by that name at Galle Road, Kollupitiya to list nearly 40.3 million of its ordinary voting shares by way of an introduction.
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New Constitution was promised to the people
Published Date: 04/11/2017 (Saturday)
Minister of Lands and Parliamentary Reforms Gayantha Karunatilaka says the new Constitution was a promise given to the people, and said \"Even we, who brought in the existing Constitution have accepted that a change is necessary. The President is also of the same view. We will bring this in not in the same manner as the 18th Amendment. We will obtain everyone\'s ideas. It is the Interim Report that was prepared and is being subject to discussion. Is there a Constitution that was brought with so much
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‘Orumiththa Nadu’ and ‘Ayikkiya Nadu’ is mere word play TNA deceiving the people with word games
Published Date: 04/11/2017 (Saturday)
The Jaffna District MP, former Minister and the Leader of the Ealam People\\\'s Democratic Party (EPDP) Douglas Devananda said that Amendments are the Constitution needs to amended and interested parties should decide what Amendments are to be made. He added that the confusion between the Orumiththa Nadu and Ayikkiya Nadu is mere word play of the TNA to deceive the Tamil People. Devananda denied any alliance with or support to Joint Opposition\\\'s Podu Jana Peramuna and
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Path to democracy and governance
Published Date: 04/11/2017 (Saturday)
Coming from Ananda Collage, the epicentre of Sinhala Buddhism, when I entered Engineering Faculty what impressed me most at that stage was the fact the so many Tamils and others, mixed freely with the Sinhalese, both within the lecture rooms and outside. In those days, in spite of some racist elements here and there, all students and staff of the entire university worked together without squinter or suspicion. I do not think that any Sinhala student felt uneasy learning under Mailvaganam, Mahalingam, Sivaprakasapillai and Thurairaja.
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T&T signs MoU with Sri Lanka, Cuba
Published Date: 03/11/2017 (Friday)
The Financial Intelligence Unit of Trinidad and Tobago (FIUTT) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Financial Intelligence Units of Sri Lanka and Cuba in Argentina. Friday’s signing was witnessed by Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Faris Al-Rawi. The FIU Act provides the FIUTT with the mandate to enter into MOUs with its foreign counterparts.
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Expect crossovers in droves when elections are announced We want to take an anti-UNP struggle forward
Published Date: 03/11/2017 (Friday)
Former Deputy Minister for Postal Services and Muslim Affairs Duleep Wijesekera noted that the concept unity government is foreign to the grassroots level politics as the animosity between the two major parties, United National Party (UNP) and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) is still rife. As a result the political foundation of the national government is unstable, although the senior politicians in the upper rung are complacent in their notion of a unity government.
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Centre will lose all power if proposals are implemented - MR
Published Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says that ‘manipulation’ by the government is glaringly obvious in the whole process of formulating a new Constitution and that the Joint Opposition is being provided with scarce opportunities to voice their opinions. Delivering a speech during the debate on the Interim Report of the Steering Committee at the Constitutional Assembly in Parliament today (2), he charged that the views expressed by their MPs in the various sub-committees were dropped when the reports were published.
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VP Leader pooh-poohs Wimal’s bomb threat, danger of secession
Published Date: 02/11/2017 (Thursday)
National Freedom Front leader Wimal Weerawansa’s call to bomb Parliament, if it passes, the new constitution should not be taken seriously by others, JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake told the Constitutional Assembly yesterday. "Before responding to a threat by a person we should take look at who is making the threat. The person who threatens to bomb Parliament is not strong enough even to hurl a stone at a target with a catapult. He is not physically capable of anything. He has proved his strength by his conduct so far. He did not even have the courage to remain in remand prison. Before one
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