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News: Workers on the move; the quest for social justice
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
While the country awaits the decision of the high-level special committee appointed on Tuesday, to determine the future course of the national unity or consensus government, responsible citizens should also focus attention on the creation of a just and fair society which the current administration pledged to do but has shown little progress. This may have been one of the other major reasons for the huge protest vote against the national government’s two major parties at the February 10 elections to 340 local councils. Next week the United Nations marks the World Day of Social Justice and in a statement the UN says, social justice is an underlying principle for peaceful and prosperous coexistence within and among nations.
News: Sri Lankan family allowed to stay in Queenstown
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
A Sri Lankan family which won the support of the Queenstown community in its fight against deportation has been given a reprieve and will be allowed to stay in New Zealand for another year. Clutha-Southland MP Hamish Walker, who has been supporting Sri Lankan family, Dinesha Amarasinghe, Sam Wijerathne and their three boys Senath, Subath, and Binath, said the Immigration and Protection Tribunal (IPT) ruled they should be allowed to stay in New Zealand for the next year on humanitarian grounds, while their residence application is assessed.
News: New Constitution now a dream - Tilvin
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) has pointed out that one of the important reforms, that had been peddled by the Unity Government – the introduction of a new Constitution – will continue to remain a dream given the current political instability in the country. The JVP has noted that the country is currently facing a political crisis due mainly to the failure of both, the President and the Prime Minister, to honour the pledges given by them. The JVP emphasized that despite the prevailing political instability, the Party would continue to win the demands on behalf of the people, even from a weak Parliament.
News: JO alleges US, India seeking to save UNP, SLFP ‘marriage’
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
The Joint Opposition/Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) yesterday alleged US and Indian efforts to save the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe administration in the wake of latter’s Feb. 10 drubbing at local government polls. Addressing the media at Dr. N.M. Perera Center, Cotta Road, Borella, JO/SLPP spokesmen, MPs Dallas Alahapperuma, Shehan Semasinghe, Sisira Jayakody and Thenuka Vidanagamage alleged those who had spearheaded 2015 project to oust President Mahinda Rajapaksa were busy trying to save the coalition.
News: Over 2,200 Lankans sought refugee status in Japan last year
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
Over 2,200 Sri Lankans sought refugee status in Japan last year, the Ministry of Justice in Japan said. Japan approved only 20 out of a record 19,628 applicants for refugee status last year as authorities reject appeals they suspect come from job-seekers, Nikkei Asia reported. Last year saw an increase of 8,727 people applying for refugee status from 2016 levels, the Ministry of Justice reported. The total number set a record for the seventh year in the row. The greatest contingent of 2017’s applicants came from the Philippines, the figure climbing 250% to 4,895 people. Vietnam came next at 3,116, followed by Sri Lanka with 2,226.
News: Minimum age of criminal responsibility to be increased
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
Sri Lanka is to amend the Criminal Procedure Code Act for increasing the minimum age of a child who is considered as responsible for a crime up to 12 years. The current minimum age of criminal responsibility in the country is 8 years. Justice Minister Thalatha Athukorala had submitted a cabinet paper for the Amendment of Criminal Procedure Code Act No – 15 of 1979 for the above purpose. Co-cabinet Spokesman Gayantha Karunathilake toady said that it was decided to publish the prepared bill in gazette and present it in parliament for approval.
News: Lack of Tamil translators hindered election process
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
A chronic lack of bilingual officials at district election offices and at the Government Printer had become a serious hindrance to the smooth functioning of electoral processes, Head of the Elections Commission Mahinda Deshapriya said yesterday. That had led to the delay in issuing several important documents to election officials, Deshapriya said. "We have been telling successive governments about this issue. For example there are no Tamil proof readers at the Government Printer and we wanted to send the names of candidates appointed for each ward to voters and we realized, halfway through, that there is
News: JVP will build people’s center to fulfill aspirations of 8th January
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
“Ranil – Maithri administration, instead of managing the economy for the benefit of the people, continued with the old, gluttonous economy. The result of 10th February election is the people’s response to their idiotic moves. As such, the President or the Prime Minister can no longer fulfil the aspirations of the people. Only a people’s movement led by the JVP would be able to fulfil the aspirations the people expected with the 8th January change. We would assure that a political centre lead by the JVP would be built fulfil the aspirations of 8th January,” says the Leader of the JVP Anura Dissanayaka.
News: Did Mahinda Actually Call Ranil And Asked To Remain In Post? Former President Artfully Dodges the Question
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
A fresh controversy has arisen over former President Mahinda Rajapaksa's alleged phone call to Prime Mimister Ranil Wickremesinghe asking the latter to remain in the position, without succumbing to the pressure to step down. This was revealed by the weekly Cabinet briefing today, by Cabinet Spokesman Rajitha Senaratne who cheekily said even former President Rajapaksa, the de facto leader of the Joint Opposition, wanted Wickremesinghe to remain in power.
Photos: Election results leave Govt in disarray
Posted Date: 15/02/2018 (Thursday)
News: Justice delayed, justice denied: Verdict from the people’s court
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
There is a feeling among a section of the public that the law’s delays were one of the reasons for widespread public disapproval, disappointments and even anger which led to a massive protest vote against the government at the February 10 elections to 340 local councils. It was an important aspect of the verdict given by the court of the sovereign people. During the campaign for the January 8, 2015 presidential election, the then rainbow coalition leaders alleged that the Rajapaksa government’s VIP politicians, top officials and lackeys had plundered billions of dollars from public funds.
News: Hung LG bodies cause headache for political parties
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
Executive Director of Transparency International Sri Lanka Asoka Obesekere has warned of political turmoil for want of a particular party gaining absolute majority in about 160 local government bodies at just concluded local government polls. Countrywide elections were held for 340 local government bodies. Elpitiya Pradeshiya Sabha is the only exception due to a court directive. Obesekere asserted that those having the majority in hung local government bodies would find it difficult to secure required support to form an administration.
News: Removal of PM: Experts warn President’s options limited by 19A
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
The enactment of the historic 19th Amendment continues to have profound relevance on the options open to President Maithripala Sirisena as crisis deepens in the ruling coalition, with legal experts warning that a 2003 style take-over of ministries by the President or the unilateral sacking of the Prime Minister feared by many political observers is virtually impossible under the provisions of the Act. The incumbent President, who is subject to the provisions of the 19A, cannot force the removal of a sitting Prime Minister or the Cabinet of Ministers without triggering a major constitutional crisis, since the historic legislation has slashed presidential powers in this respect, legal experts told the Daily FT.
News: President to make special statement on unity govt’s future
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
President Maithripala Sirisena will make a special statement regarding the future actions of the government, before Friday (Feb. 16), Minister Susil Premajayantha said. He was speaking to reporters outside the Presidential Secretariat in Colombo, a short while ago, following a discussion held with the President. Following the crushing defeat it suffered in the local authorities elections, Sri Lanka’s ruling coalition comprising the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) led by President Sirisena, and the United National Party (UNP) led by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, has been on the verge of a break up.
News: CID arrests Former DIG Prasanna Nanayakkara
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
Retired former Deputy Inspector General of Police, formerly in charge of Mount Lavinia Prasanna Nanayakkara has been arrested by the Criminal Investigations Department on charges of concealing evidence in the murder case of journalist Lasantha Wickrematunge. The CID had arrested the former DIG last night. Retired former DIG Prasanna Nanayakkara is accordingly due to be produced before the Mount Lavinia Magistrates Court today.
News: Not my job to issue final results: EC
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
The Elections Commission was neither under obligation to issue final results of the LG polls nor was its job, Elections Commission (EC) Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya said today. He added however that a booklet would be issued on February 28 including all data, statistics and information related to the February 10 polls. He said the EC was Constitutionally mandated to issue final results only at a Referendum and Provincial Councils, Parliamentary and Presidential polls because results of any of these polls become legally valid after the declaration of the results by the EC.
News: 'I Would Rather Trust Ranil's One Word Over Seven Papers Signed By Sirisena:' MR Turns Down SLFP Offers
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa last night had ridiculed a group of SLFP seniors who visited his residence to offer a 'truce' to work together in Local Government bodies. "I would rather trust Ranil's one word over seven papers signed by Sirisena. I won't trust his promises," ( Ranilge kata wachane mata wishwasayi, eth Sirisena kola hathaka liwwath mata wishwasa nehe) Rajapaksa had said, turning down the offer by the SLFP seniors who are now in a desperate situation following the defeat at the Local Government election.
News: Sri Lanka President's party seeks shot at govt
Posted Date: 14/02/2018 (Wednesday)
Sri Lanka President's United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) which was decimated at recent local election has said it wants to topple Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and form a new administration. UPFA General Secretary Mahinda Amaraweera told reporters Wednesday that he wrote Sirisena claiming that they had a majority in the 225-member assembly to form a new government. However, there is a major constitutional obstacle to removing Wickremesinghe. The 19th amendment to the constitution does not give the president the power to sack the prime minister unless parliament first through a resolution removes him with 113 MPs supporting it.
News: As a US citizen, I can\'t accept PM’s post: Gota
Posted Date: 13/02/2018 (Tuesday)
Former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who returned yesterday to Sri Lanka from the US, said he could not accept the Prime Ministerial portfolio because he was an American citizen. He said this when asked by the journalists at the Airport whether he would accept the Post of Prime Minister if it was offered by the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP). “I can\'t. I am an American citizen. So I cannot accept that portfolio. Besides, who wants to become a Prime Minister in a scenario such as what exists today,” he said and added that he had still not decided to enter politics.
News: ‘‘An unstable Maldives will lead to an unstable Indian Ocean’’ President Yameen has to go - Nasheed
Posted Date: 13/02/2018 (Tuesday)
Former President of Maldives, currently in exile and stationed in Colombo, Mohamed Nasheed in a candid interview with the Daily mirror insisted that the current President must step down in order to resolve the ongoing political turmoil the country is engulfed in. • On the night of my exile Sri Lankan Ministers were in Male • I have the ground support of my people • China seems to support autocratic Governments

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