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Mathews' mopping act salvages Sri Lanka again

July 6 (CI) Perhaps it's because Angelo Mathews' team-mates have spoken so much about his capacity to absorb pressure that they have lately begun to treat him like a human dishcloth. In recent years, Mathews is the man forever mopping up top-order spills, wiping down tailenders' nervous sweats, and occasionally serving as the improvised bandage that delays bloody death and makes the corpse a little more presentable. more..

Guerrilla diplomacy and Wild West tactics in Toronto

July 6 (Island) I was invited to attend an event at the Toronto Law Courts organised by the South Asia Bar Association of Canada. I thought it was a very good opportunity for me to meet and network with South Asian lawyers in Canada. After the lecture by the Attorney General of Ontario, I walked into the reception hall and saw a prominent LTTE backer and harsh critic of Sri Lanka, Garry Anandasangaree. He is a son of TULF leader, V. Anandasangaree. more..

Editorial: Politics!

July 6 (Island) Nothing is so certain as the unexpected in politics. President Sirisena has finally agreed to nominate his bête noire, Mahinda Rajapaksa, to contest the August 17 polls. Both of them have made compromises; the former said he would never field Rajapaksa on the UPFA ticket and the latter spared no pains to be named the UPFA’s PM candidate. Now, it has been left to the UPFA parliamentary group to decide who should be PM in case of an SLFP-led govt being formed. more..

'Polls will be free and fair'

July 6 (SO) With the two main political parties, UNP and the SLFP ready for a do or die battle to secure power in Parliament on August 17, EC Mahinda Deshapriya, said his office will do whatever possible to ensure the upcoming polls are free and fair and violence-free. Elections Department machinery will swing into full operation nominations close on July 13, to bring down illegal hoardings & cutouts, and punish offenders. more..

Mahinda catches the UPFA bus: but will Maithri get runover?

July 6 (ST) As things stand at this volatile hour on the shifting sands of Lankan politics, reports indicate that Mahinda Rajapaksa will soon be boarding the UPFA bus having obtained his season ticket to travel courtesy of President Sirisena. And no doubt, his loyal cheering squad of political groupies will be accompanying this senior and once foremost citizen on the southern expressway to keep him company and to carry his baggage of prime ministerial hopes. News of confirmation of his economy seat more..

Deciding as to which roguery is less harmful to Sri Lanka

July 6 (ST) That pithy village idiom, long beloved of those who view politics and politicians with a bitterly jaundiced eye, unuthekai, munuthekai, is greatly apt for Sri Lanka’s current political environment. This translates roughly into saying that one set of political rogues is only equaled by the other set of political rogues. Smaller political parties who have used this scathing indictment as a poster cry against the two main party voting blocs are also no better, as the post January 2015 political trajectory shows. more..

'UNP confident of winning 115 seats'

July 6 (SL) UNP has buckled down to secure a majority in parliament and has confidently declared that they will secure 115 seats in parliament without difficulty owing to the split in the SLFP. UNP has announced that several Tamil parties have already agreed to contest with the party under the elephant symbol and they also invited anybody who wishes to contest the election with the UNP under elephant symbol to join them. more..

Those who can’t COPE..

July 6 (NS) Those who cannot the COPE need to go home, and that is almost axiomatic. Parliament was dissolved before the COPE Report on the Central Bank Governor’s bond dealings had a chance of seeing the light of day. It is patently obvious to the people that the abrupt dissolution of Parliament at this juncture was a direct result of the COPE bombshell, and other financial irregularities of govt heavyweights which were bound to be highlighted in no-confidence debates that were to come. more..

Wealth of a New Nation

July 6 (NS) Devotees: Many political devotees observed sil at the Medamulana Abhayaramaya last Wednesday. Love for the sons: Many political leaders today don’t think about themselves, but think about their sons. Mahinda is not thinking about himself but about his sons. Vimal too seems to be thinking in that way. Dinesh and many others are the same. But Vasu may be different. He thinks about his beard. Same: Vijithamuni made Maharaja an appachchi. In retaliation, Professor Nalin is more..

'People expect the SLFP to be united'

July 6 (SL) Rathnasiri Wickramanayake is a senior member of the SLFP. At present, he serves as a senior advisor to President Maithripala Sirisena. Given below are experts of the interview with Wickramanayake. Q: What is your opinion about the upcoming general election? A: In short, if we split we will lose. Our strength is in our alliance and unity. If we continue to work together in unison we will not have any obstacle. more..

Projects, projects everywhere: But who knows how to run them?

July 6 (CT) Human history is replete with projects enabling civilisations to deliver marvellous creations through them. But many of them have been failures right from the design stage. Sri Lanka’s recent history is marred by a plethora of such failed projects due to errors in design. Of them, the Hambantota Harbour failing to attract large draft ships due to low depth of the harbour, the Mattala Airport with a runway perpendicular to the headwinds forcing airlines to shun it more..

To be or not to be with the party: The million dollar dilemma!

July 6 (CT) I respect Mr. Maithripala Sirisena who refuses to be addressed as His Excellency, for his bold decision to confront the the absolute villain of Sri Lankan politics. He took a bold step but he would have been ashes if not for the support of firstly the digruntled people and then those who crossed over with him including Rajitha a main architect, Champika and Ven Rathana, Arjuna, and the others. The revolution had already started when Mr. Maithripala was invited by more..

President's alliance disintegrates

July 5 (EN) UPFA disintegrated further with another key coalition partner formally quitting Sunday, a day before nominations opened for August general elections. The JHU, or the Heritage Party, of Buddhist monks announced Sunday that they were leaving the UPFA which was formed in 2004 to topple the then UNF govt led by the UNP. JHU national organiser Champika Ranawaka said that they were breaking ranks with the UPFA, more..

UNP delighted over UPFA decision to nominate Rajapaksa

July 5 (AM) Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake said that the UNP is delighted over the decision taken by the UPFA to grant nomination to former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. He said that with Rajapaksa out of the scene, there was no major reason to hit out at the SLFP. "There was no one in the opposition that we could accuse" he pointed out. However, the inclusion of Rajapaksa in the UPFA election campaign provided the UNP more than enough points to attack the alliance, more..

MEP to contest with the UPFA

July 5 (DM) Dinesh Gunawardena led Mahajana Eksath Peramuna (MEP) today announced that it would contest the forthcoming general elections along with the UPFA under the betel leaf symbol. In a statement its General Secretary Thissa Yapa Jayawardana said the decision had been taken during the Central Committee meeting held yesterday with the participation of its Leader Dinesh Gunawardena. It further said that they would represent their candidate covering more..

Arjuna initiates discussions with UNP

July 5 (DM) Minister Arjuna Ranatunga has initiated negotiations with the UNP and other parties on contesting the election from a front against Mahinda Rajapaksa. Ranatunga, a strong critic of former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, was elected to parliament in 2010 from the Democratic National Alliance. Following the election of Maithripala Sirisena as President, he was appointed SLFP Chief Organizer in Attanagalla, the traditional stronghold more..

Gotabaya says he applied the US embassy to cancel his dual citizenship

July 5 (AD) Former Defence Secretary Gotabya Rajapaksa said the recent news that he is about to contest at the forthcoming General Election is a hoax. “This has nothing to do with my citizenship issue,” he said, adding that however he has already taken measures to cancel his dual citizenship. “I’ve already handed over the relevant documents to the US embassy, in this regard” he said. He said that he has no intention to contest at the election and enter the parliament. more..

Sanga among Royal Box guests at Wimbledon

July 5 (DM) Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara is the star attraction in the Royal Box on centre court for Sportsman Saturday at Wimbledon, London. England’s star crickter Jimmy Anderson, England rugby coach Stuart Lancaster and captain Chris Robshaw are also in attendance, along with golfers Justin Rose and Luke Donald. Irish legend Brian O'Driscoll, Leeds-born boxer Nicola Adams, veteran runner Jo Pavey and Paralympian star David Weir are also on the royal list. more..

JVP accuses Maithripala of betraying people

July 5 (CG) JVP accused President Maithripala Sirisena of betraying the people by giving nominations to former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to contest the Parliament election under the UPFA. JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva said that the statement issued by UPFA General Secretary Susil Premjayantha makes it official that Rajapaksa has been given nominations to contest the polls. “This is a betrayal of the mandate given to the President on Jan 8. more..

Indian hoopsters to face Lanka in title clash

July 5 (IANS) Defending champions India and challengers Sri Lanka progressed to the expected title clash in the fourth South Asian Basketball Association tournament here on Sunday by remaining unbeaten in their four matches. India roared past the Maldives 128-48 and Sri Lanka survived some close calls before overcoming Nepal 76-68 to register their fourth win in as many matches. Nepal thus completed their engagements in the competition with two wins and three defeats, more..

UNP says it will not accuse the President

July 5 (CG) UNP says it will not accuse President Maithripala Sirisena over the nomination issue involving former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Former UNP MP P. Harrison said that the UNP had reached an agreement with President Sirisena ahead of Presidential election and worked with him to meet the expectations of the people. He said that the President had promised to establish good governance and he had begun that process by getting support for the 19th Amendment to the constitution. more..

JHU quits from UPFA, forms new coalition

July 5 (CG) The JHU today announced that it had quit from the UPFA and that it had formed a new coalition. JHU General Secretary and former Minister Champika Ranawaka said that his party played a key role to help Maithripala Sirisena win the January 8 Presidential elections. He said the JHU had consistently pushed for the powers of the President to be reduced and this was achieved following the January election through the 19th Amendment more..

Health Ministry promises: Better access to cheaper, quality drugs

July 5 (SO) Health Ministry has assured the public that health services would be much improved in the coming weeks, with better access to good quality drugs at a cheaper rate. When the National Medicine Regulatory Authority Act is established, for the regulation of medicinal drugs, medical devices and even borderline products, the services would vastly improve. The Regulatory Authority comprising 13 members are tasked with ensuring that all medicinal drugs, medicinal devices and more..

Sri Lanka's foreign reserves rise to US$7.5bn in June 2015

July 5 (EN) Sri Lanka's foreign reserves recovered to US$ 7,519 million in June 2015 from US$ 6,845 million in May, helped by bond sales by the state, official data showed. In June Sri Lanka received the proceeds of a 650 million dollar sovereign bond and US$ 665 million of dollar bonds sold in the domestic market but June is also a month where there are heavy debt repayments. Dollars however will move out of the country regardless of whether there are foreign repayments even when more..

Mathews builds commanding position for Sri Lanka

July 5 (CI) Angelo Mathews was the rock in Sri Lanka's middle order once again, soaking up all the pressure Pakistan created, and rebuilding from 35 for 3 to take the hosts to a commanding position. Upul Tharanga, Jehan Mubarak and Dinesh Chandimal supported their captain as Sri Lanka gradually stretched their lead to 291 until bad light ended play on another rain-hit day. It was typical Mathews resistance, blocking and blocking most of whatever more..

Azath Salley to contest Parliament polls

July 5 (CG) Muslim Tamil National Alliance (MTNA) leader Azath Salley says he will be contesting the Parliament elections from the Kandy District. Speaking to reporters after meeting the Chief Prelates of the Asgiriya and Malwattu chapters, Salley said that he will contest the election either with the UNP or as an independent candidate. Salley said that the people of Kandy have requested him to contest the election from Kandy and represent the people of Kandy in Parliament. more..

Union to stage picketing against De Abrew

July 5 (SL) The Domestic Workers Union (DWU) is to stage a picketing tomorrow, at the courts complex in Hultsdorf in Colombo calling upon authorities to take legal actions against Supreme Court judge Sarath De Abrew. The DWU announced that the picketing will be held from 11 am to 12 pm on July 6, 2015. The Union called upon all activists and supporters to join the picketing to stand up for justice for domestic workers rights and demanded legal actions against Justice Sarath De Abrew. more..

An interview with Lakshman Arjuna Mahendran

July 5 (Island) Adam Smith whose fame is more accountable to ‘An enquiry into the wealth of nations’ is reported to have claimed that he would rather have been known for his work ‘The Theory of Moral Sentiments’, a work that remained in its sixth edition by 1790 having had its first edition in 1759, which states " How selfish soever man may be supposed, there are evidently some principles in his nature, which interest him in the fortune of others, more..

‘Glyphosate is toxic to animals & humans’!

July 5 (Island) Samuel S. Epstein, M.D., Professor emeritus of Occupational and Environmental Medicine at the School of Public Health, University of Illinois Medical Centre in Chicago, is an internationally recognized authority on the toxic and carcinogenic effects of environmental pollutants in air, water, and the workplace, and of ingredients and contaminants in consumer products. He had this to say about Academic Apologists in his 1998 prize-winning book, more..

A tale of crisis management

July 5 (Island) The encroachment dispute in Wilpattu reminds me of an experience of mine when I was the Govt Agent of Trincomalee in the sixties. I referred to it in my first article to the media published in the Sunday Times of 06/13 June, 2004. Of course, the Daily News had published in its center page on January 10, 1970, my address to the All Ceylon Buddhist Congress, assembled for the first time in a non-Buddhist majority district in Trincomalee. more..

TNA faces dispute over nominations

July 5 (ST) The TNA and its coalition partners are locked in a dispute over nominations for smaller parties in the alliance, party sources said. The dispute arose after smaller parties asked that at least two members from each smaller party be given nominations in the Northern and eastern Provinces. These parties include the TELO, EPRLF-Suresh wing and the DPLF which is the political wing of the PLOTE. more..

Victimised officers to be reinstated

July 5 (SO) The Defence Ministry has given approval to reinstate 11 officers of the Sri Lanka Army and the Sri Lanka Air Force who were politically victimised during the previous regime. The committee appointed by President Sirisena as the Defence Minister to look into the alleged allegations of political victimisation has recommended the restoration of their ranks, and the promotions of 7 Army officers and 4 Air Force officers more..

August Elections: Power blocs line up against common foe

July 5 (SO) Rapid political re-alignments have begun on the eve of nominations as parties and groups react to last week’s sudden decision by the leadership of the UPFA to field former President Mahinda Rajapaksa as one of its candidates for the forthcoming parliamentary hustings. The emerging new alignments are likely to pit a range of parties and coalitions that have been hostile to the Rajapaksa regime against more..

Swift action and prosecution of election law violators

July 5 (ST) Elections Department is seeking the advice of the Attorney General on how to expedite the prosecution of those violating election laws during the ongoing campaign for the general elections, Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya said. Commissioner who has been given new powers under the 19th Amendment will request the Attorney General to assign a separate team of officials to assist police in the investigations more..

MR factor in August

July 5 (CT) I will come with Maithri from Kelaniya – Mervyn Silva. I will contest the general election from the UPFA led by the SLFP from the Kelaniya electorate in the Gampaha District. This election will be won by the Alliance under the leadership of President Maithripala Sirisena. As the advice of the astrologer from Galle has not been obtained for this election, there is no doubt that we will record a victory. Now we have a leader who has more..

NICU in New York named after SL physician

July 5 (Island) At an official ceremony last week, Richmond University Medical Center (RUMC) dedicated the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in honour of the late Dr. Anantham Harin, a Sri Lankan physician, who directed the unit at the time of his death in 2010 at age 65. "This is a simple honour for a man who earned the recognition and admiration not just of his colleagues here at Richmond University Medical Center, more..