SPECIAL NEWS

Parliamentarians who failed to deliver

13th January 2015 // 0 Comments

By Nadia Fazlulhaq A number of parliamentarians from both the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) and United National Party (UNP) failed to secure victory in their respective electorates on behalf of the presidential candidates they supported at the recently concluded Presidential Election. Several top ministers in the Mahinda Rajapaksa administration were defeated in their own areas even though the former president managed to win the majority of the electorates in the Southern, North Western and Sabaragamuwa provinces. In the Gampaha district, the electorates of Wattala, Negombo, Katana and Ja-ela were won by candidate Maitripala Sirisena despite the UPFA having several high profile parliamentarians from the district including, Sarath Kumara Guneratne, Felix Perera, and Dr. Mrs. Sudharshini Fernandopulle. Mr. Sirisena also won the Kelaniya electorate which […]

Tough task ahead for Sri Lanka’s new president

13th January 2015 // 0 Comments

SINCE he was easily the most powerful politician Sri Lanka has had since independence, six months ago it was impossible to dream that Mahinda Rajapaksa could be defeated at a presidential election. With the 18th amendment to the constitution, he introduced safeguards that enabled him to remain in power with term limits removed. He held a two-thirds majority in parliament and controlled the state media, judiciary, security apparatus and the economy. His extended family held all key posts. He believed, and his supporters and political appointees believed, he was invincible. Rajapaksa was confident of the support of the majority Sinhala-Buddhist voters, who considered him their saviour for militarily defeating the minority separatist rebels, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, and ending a 30-year war. The […]

Interim Cabinet appointed for 100-day sprint

13th January 2015 // 0 Comments

President warns Ministers not to get too addicted to power  Strict action against anyone engaging in corruption, irrespective of rank Sirisena tells Cabinet to earn back the respect of the people  Ministers warned to bear in mind that they must face election in three months  Sajin, Karuna defections cause ripples in common alliance A spate of defections from the UPFA to President Maithripala Sirisena’s Government caused a furore in the ranks of the common alliance yesterday, with several high profile members threatening to walk out if former regime acolytes were granted positions in the new administration. News that UPFA MP and former Monitoring MP of the Ministry of External Affairs Sajin Vaas Gunewardane and Haputale District MP and Namal Rajapaksa loyalist Udith Lokubandara had pledged support […]

Pope Francis can “push” reconciliation in Sri Lanka but will he?

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis was scheduled to leave on Monday evening for the 7th Apostolic Trip of his Pontificate.  The first stop of his two-nation journey is Sri Lanka. Welcoming him will be the Archbishop of Colombo, Cardinal Albert Malcolm Ranjith, and the President of Sri Lanka, Maithripala Sirisena. Sirisena was elected on January 8th, beating incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who held office for nearly 10 years. “Strange enough, all three Popes who came to Sri Lanka – Pope Paul, Pope John Paul, and Pope Francis – the government that invited is not the government to receive him,” commented Cardinal Ranjith. Listen to the full interview by Fr. Louis Xystus Jerome with Cardinal Ranjith: The newly elected President has promised to works towards reconciliation on […]

Harin Fernando – SF Threaten To Resign Over KARUNA Defections

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka and Opposition Leader of the Uva Provincial Council Harin Fernando have threatened to resign from the UNP-led coalition and form an independent group in protest of the latest defections from the UPFA. They have strongly expressed their disappointment over defections of Vinayagamoorthi Muralitharan (KARUNA), Sajin Vaas Gunawardena, Anura Vidanagamage and Udith Lokubandara. It is learnt that Fernando has personally contacted Prime Minister Ranil Wickremeisnghe to show his displeasure over the recent developments. Wickremesinghe, in response, had told Fernando to remain calm as it was a problem within the Sri Lanka Freedomn Party (SLFP). However, Fernando and Fonseka had alarmed the government that they would immediately resign if government posts were given to post-election defectors such as Sajin Vaas Gunawardena, Uditha […]

How Ranil Pre-empted a Coup Attempt by Mahinda and Facilitated a Peaceful Transfer of Power to Maithripala

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

By The “Sunday Times”Political Editor Millions of Sri Lankans learnt only by late Friday morning that the major thrust by Opposition political parties brought an end to the near ten year rule of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. As the counting began in centres countrywide after polls ended on Thursday, families and friends sat around their television sets for the results. There was fear in the minds of most. Only a day earlier, in the main cities, shops and supermarkets were crowded by people panic buying stocks of food to cope with a possible post-poll curfew on Friday, marred by violent incidents. There was no cause for such a move. The reason – there were brave men in the security forces, the judiciary, the Department of Elections […]

We All Have To Accommodate Each Other – M. A. Sumanthiran

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

When looking at the victory, it is evident that the new president has received a clear mandate from the minority in the North and the East. Even though the Tamil National Alliance initially had several concerns, they finally came forward to support the New Democratic Party (NDP) campaign which clearly strengthened the support of the Tamil voter-base in the North.   TNA MP M. A. Sumanthiran told The Sunday Leader that the minority votes played a decisive role in this election and therefore the weight of the minority votes is equal to the weight of the majority votes. – Excerpts of the interview: By Waruni Karunarathne Q: What is the part the TNA played in the victory of the new president? A: I think it was […]

The North Factor In The Presidential Pools

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

By R. Jeevan – The Tamil Community was placed in an uncomfortable situation from the time when it was announced the 2015 Presidential Elections. Unable to enter into any kind of discussion with the then opposition the TNA saw any of its efforts to support Maithiripala Sirisena a wild goose chase. At the prima faciae, TNA was unlikely to call for a boycott or leave the decision up to the people. TNA members were very cautious in making any statement since there was a high possibility in the south to be misinterpreted any of its stands or even upset the Tamils in the North. The amalgam of Tamil academics and intellectuals, the Tamil Civil Society Forum(TCSF) argued reasonably on the issues pertaining to the Tamils […]

Govt. To Nab Former Minister Weerawansa Over Sexual Assault Charges?

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

The newly appointed government is planning to nab a former Minister Wimal Weerawansa over sexual assault charges, reliable source said. Record From The History: Wimal Weerawansa accused of sexual harassment We are re-publishing the following report on the former Minister Wimal Weerawansa, who is responsibility for sever sexual assaults on an innocent women. The article was originally published by the Sunday Leader, when late Lasantha was editing it, on November 2006.  Lake House employee transferred to Anuradhapura following revelations Complaint made to President Rajapakse in writing Weerawansa accused of abusing girl in filth for alleged leak Wimal’s wife is alleged to have told victim she is aware of husband’s weakness for phone action Wimal Weerawansa then a minister under the Former President Rajapaksa, attending the […]

Time to stand by the faith of North East voters!

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

By Ananth Palakidnar Tamil Civil Society Forum (TCSF) Spokesman Guruparan Kumaravadivel commenting on the outcome of the Lankan Presidential poll to India’s The Hindu newspaper, has stated since the people in the North are skeptical about the new the President, Maithripala Sirisena, delivering on Tamil demands, the Tamil vote was against Rajapaksa and not an endorsement of Maithripala Sirisena. The statement by the TCSF Spokesman was somewhat correct to a certain extent as on the polling day on Thursday (8), the voting in the Jaffna Peninsula was lousy in the morning and there were even intimidations in certain areas of the peninsula. A grenade was thrown at a deserted house in the area, despite the stringent security measures adopted by the Elections Department Officials and […]

Where did Rajapaksa go wrong ? – ”Addressing the issues of the minorities of the country who are more than one million voters”

12th January 2015 // 0 Comments

Election analysis Where did Rajapaksa go wrong ? By Umesh Moramudali In what appears to be one of the most eagerly followed presidential elections in the country’s history, which made an incumbent Executive President a loser for the first time in Sri Lanka, Maithripala Sirisena was elected the sixth Executive President of Sri Lanka on Thursday (8). The new President received 6,217,162 votes – 51.28% of the total votes polled – with a majority of 449,072 votes than his main opponent, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who received 5,768,090 votes (47.58%). According to the 2014 Electoral Register, 15,044,490 people were eligible to vote in the 2015 presidential election. Out of that number, 12,264,377 voters exercised their franchise, which is 81.52% of the total number registered. It […]

TNA assures Ranil on the north

11th January 2015 // 0 Comments

TNA assures Ranil on the north The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has assured Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe that it is for a united Sri Lanka and will not allow LTTE activities or protests against the army in the north. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe met the chief prelates in Kandy today and briefed them on the security situation in the north following the Presidential elections. The Premier had told the monks that reports of attacks on the army and LTTE flags being raised following the election was false and baseless. Wickremesinghe told reporters in Kandy that he had obtained a report from the police in Jaffna and the police has also certified that the north was calm. “I obtained a report from the Jaffna DIG and […]

Al JaZeera Report on New President of Sri Lanka

11th January 2015 // 0 Comments

There is some concern among Tamil Diaspora that President Maithripala has not made any move to address the Tamils’ issue. We need to take note that this is a better option than having continuation of Mahinda Rajapaksa as President under him planned colonization would have shrunk the boundary of Tamil Eelam. The Tamil Diaspora groups who were calling for non-participation should reflect on outcome that would have caused, if Rajapaksa had won or his attempt to sabotage the election after losing has succeeded? Thankful for the USA and India’s intervention which stopped the violent end that would have caused another pogrom. Visit this link: http://www.forbes.com/sites/alyssaayres/2015/01/09/sri-lankas-victory-for-democracy/ .   In the seven districts of North East and area where Tamils and Muslims are in substantial number (over […]

North and East preferred the Unknown Angel

11th January 2015 // 0 Comments

North and East preferred the Unknown Angel By Manekshaw Democracy in the country reemerged vibrantly with the minorities being the key factor in electing the new President, Maithripala Sirisena. Unlike in the previous Presidential polls in the Island, all minority political parties apart from the Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC), in the upcountry joined hands shedding their differences in placing their confidence in the new President. Despite the CWC led by Arumugam Thondaman calling upon the upcountry labour force to support the UPFA Presidential candidate Mahinda Rajapaksa, the people in the hills had decided the other way in boldly electing the new President. The outgoing President Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing his election rally in Jaffna, a week ago, appealed to the voters in the Peninsula saying vote […]

I Cannot Accept the Defeat Caused by the Tamils: Mahinda Rajapaksa

10th January 2015 // 0 Comments

At the Presidential Election because of the Voting Strength of the Tamils in Srilanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa got defeated and lost his power. But Mahinda says that he is refused to accept this defeat, because it has been caused only by the Tamils. Before the elections results are fully announced, abruptly in the middle of the night, Mahinda left the Presidential Palace Temple Trees in a hurried manner. From Colombo city he went to Hambantota in Medamulana, where he got his own house. At this place lots of his supporters were gathered together to support him. In their midst, Mahinda gave an emotional speech as follows: “The Prime reason for the defeat in the Presidential Election is caused by the Vote banks of the Tamils from […]

Sri Lankan presidential election, 2015 – THE RESULTS

10th January 2015 // 0 Comments

Sri Lankan presidential election, 2015 – THE RESULTS Sirsena was declared the winner after receiving 51.28% of all votes cast compared to Rajapaksa’s 47.58%.[7] Rajapaksa had earlier conceded defeat after meeting Wickremesinghe and assuring him of a smooth transition of power.[271][272] Rajapaksa then left his official residence Temple Trees.[273][274] Sirsena was sworn in as Sri Lanka’s sixth executive president before Supreme Court judge K. Sripavan in Independence Square, Colombo at 6.20pm on 9 January 2015.[275][276] It is custom for the president to be sworn in before the chief justice but Sirsena had refused to be sworn in before Chief Justice Peiris who had been appointed by Rajapaksa after the controversial impeachment of the previous chief justice.[277][278]Immediately afterwards, Wickremesinghe was sworn in as Sri Lanka’s new […]

Mahinda falls for trap he had set for Chandrika!

10th January 2015 // 0 Comments

Fate metes out punishment in various forms. Former president Mahinda Rajapaksa is now experiencing the uneven cycle of punishment. In order to exert political revenge on former president Chandrika Kumaratunga, his main political enemy, Rajapaksa curtailed, from the last budget, to R. 60 million the Rs. 270 million annual allocation for her as an ex-president. At the same time, he allocated Rs. 25 million a day for himself.  A mere two months went by. Rajapaksa lost his position. One who had been spending Rs. 25 million a day, is now getting only Rs. 60 million a year. He set the trap for Kumaratunga. But, he himself fell into it. That is how fate metes out punishment. This is only the beginning. Rajapaksa will soon fully […]

Honour our trust, Your Excellency Maithripala Sirisena

10th January 2015 // 0 Comments

The very moment we are penning this letter, you are being sworn in as the 6th Executive President of Sri Lanka. We congratulate you and wish you all the very best to you as you are poised to walk through an avenue of challenges. This rocky path of yours is signposted with “a program to be completed in 100 days”, which consists of abolishing the 18th amendment, amending the constitution to reduce most of the executive powers of the Presidency and its associated immunity, and, the setting up of a number of good governance mechanisms such as the independent commissions for the Police, constitution, bribery, elections and the judiciary. We look forward to seeing the other major policies and pledges you have made in your […]

MAHINDA Plots To Prevent His Regime’s Corruption From Being Revealed

10th January 2015 // 0 Comments

In a desperate attempt to prevent the disclosure of their corrupt engagements, Mahinda Rajapaksa has formulated a plan to get Leader of the House, Nimal Siripala de Silva appointed as the Prime Minister. It has been revealed that defeated Mahinda has been making plans since his departure from Temple Trees on Friday, to get the assistance of the UPFA MPs to oust Ranil Wickremesinghe from the position of Prime Ministership on grounds that he lacks the majority in parliament. The Constitution states the PM should receive the majority support of the parliamentarians in the house and therefore, Wickremesinghe has to get the support of at least 30 more MPs. He has instructed the UPFA MPs to gather signatures of all UPFA parliamentarians and to submit […]

Move To Bring ‘Power Hungry’ Mahinda Back To Parliament As “Alternate” Prime Minister!

10th January 2015 // 0 Comments

A group of Sri Lanka Freedom Party Parliamentarians have explored the possibility of bringing former President Mahinda Rajapaksa back to the Parliament and position him as the ‘alternate’ Prime Minister. According to the constitution of Sri Lanka, the person who can draw the support of the majority of Parliamentarians in the house should be appointed as the Prime Minister of the country. President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday appointed UNP National Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Prime Minister, minutes after taking oaths as the President of Sri Lanka. However, Wickremesinghe has to draw the support of at least 30 more MPs to form a majority in the country’s legislature. Speaking to his supporters at his ancestral home in Medamulana, former President Rajapaksa said he came to Medamulana […]

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