27th February 2015

Missing TAMIL’s issue In Maithri’s Modi Meet

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

By N Sathiya Moorthy President Maithripala Sirisena’s maiden overseas visit after assuming office to the northern Indian neighbourwill be noted more for what was left unsaid in public than said. Official pronouncements and announcements on the visit did not refer to the two T-words’ the Tamil issue and the Thirteenth Amendment. The Indian grace in this regard in particular should go a long way in sending out clear signals to the stake-holders in Sri Lanka, where their own venues and avenues for finding a solution should like inside the united Sri Lanka and not outside. It’s not as if the Indian leadership would not have referred to the two issues of inherent concerns to the nation at the bilateral talks. Yet, they did not find […]

SLFP-UNP talks over con. reforms deadlocked

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

by Shamindra Ferdinando Having briefed a parliamentary group chaired by Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe as regards the SLFP’s constitutional proposals on Thursday afternoon in Parliament, the SLFP discussed the same with President Maithripala Sirisena later in the day. President Maithripala Sirisena chaired the Central Committee meeting of the SLFP at the party headquarters. Well informed sources said that the SLFP had stressed that the repealing of executive presidential powers should coincide with far reaching electoral reforms whereas the government insisted that doing away with dictatorial powers should receive priority during the 100-day project. The government and the SLFP hadn’t been able to reach agreement on proposals, sources said. The SLFP had also called for what one senior member described as strong provision to prevent elected members from switching […]

Lanka Parliamentary Elections Only After Reforms: Cabinet Spokesman

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO: The next Sri Lankan parliamentary elections will be held only after the Maithripala Sirisena government completes all the constitutional and electoral reforms which it had promised to carry out in the run up to the January 8 Presidential election, cabinet spokesman Rajitha Senaratne said here on Thursday. “People are more interested in  reforms than in any mid-term elections to parliament.At any rate, the present parliament has more than a year of life left, ” he pointed out. The government had earlier said that it will carry out all the promised reforms within the first hundred days of the Sirisena regime, dissolve parliament on April 23, and hold mid-term elections in June. The present parliament was elected in April 2010 and the next elections are […]

SSA praise Tamil Organisations in South Africa

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

NEW DELHI: Almost a year after Prabhakaran’s death and the decimation of the LTTE, Sri Lankan intelligence agency had requested its South African counterpart to probe whether LTTE cadres, had held a military training camp in their country in May 2010 which was suspected to have been attended by individuals from Australia, Canada and UK. Interestingly, South African intelligence had rejected it saying the information could not be confirmed while maintaining that such allegations have been made since 1998. The secret intelligence cable is part of the spy files from intelligence agencies all over the world that were leaked to Al-Jazeera English TV Channel. The State Security Agency (SSA) of South Africa on June 9, 2010 had told the head of foreign Liaison that “Our […]

Sri Lanka: Press Ahead on Rights Reforms

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

(New York) – Sri Lanka’s new government should advance a reform agenda to address past and ongoing human rights problems in the country, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the newly elected president, Maithripala Sirisena. The government has already undertaken important new initiatives, such as reviewing cases of detainees under the Prevention of Terrorism Act, lifting restrictions on media reporting, ending Internet censorship, and removing nongovernmental organizations from Defense Ministry oversight. However, many important human rights concerns still need to be addressed. Among them are the use of torture by police, the protection of minority communities, the independence of government oversight committees, and the repealing of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA). Holding accountable those responsible on both sides for violations of […]

A walk in Colombo’s Somalia

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

By Shaahidah Riza Weligoda slums, also known as ‘Somalia,’ is just behind the Colombo Harbour in Mattakkuliya, walking distance from the Madampitiya Cemetery, where over 3,500 families live congested, more than two families sharing a small shack. Ceylon Today paid a visit to Colombo’s Somalia. “These people live in abject poverty and are not disturbed by all the nefarious activities that take place here. It is a haven for drugs and similar crimes. They are immune to arrests and prisons,” said a social worker who greeted us. The director of an NGO, a social worker, who wished to remain anonymous and is committed to transforming the lives of slum-dwellers, introduced us to two others, who were born and bred in the area; Ryan and Rilwan. […]

Tamil community optimistic of a just solution

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

The Tamil community is confident that a National Government to be formed after the next Parliamentary Election will resolve the ethnic issue within two years, TNA Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran said. Addressing the media yesterday in Colombo, the MP said that President Maithripala Sirisena during his Presidential Election campaign had promised to resolve the ethnic issue within two years under a National Government. “From the way this Government acts we are confident that the present government is sincere and is showing a keen interest in resolving the national issue,” Sumanthiran added. Addressing the media conference organised by the Balaya Beda Eksath Weeme Viyaparaya the TNA member pointed out the Report issued by the Lesson Learn and Reconciliation Committee (LLRC) had also focused on the importance of […]

SLMC calls for a political solution

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

The Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) says real peace can be experienced in Sri Lanka only once a political solution is presented. SLMC leader and Minister of Urban Development and Water Supply Rauff Hakeem said that while the war has ended there needs to be a political solution which meets the needs of all communities. Hakeem said this when he met a high level South African delegation in Colombo today led by South Africa’s International Relations and Cooperation Deputy Minister Nomaindia Mfeketo. The SLMC leader and Nomaindia Mfeketo discussed a wide range of issues at the meeting, the Ministry of Urban Development and Water Supply said. Hakeem told the South African delegation that the public had taken a very important decision at the last Presidential elections and […]

I left due to threats from Gota: Ex-SSP

27th February 2015 // 0 Comments

Former Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) and Police Media Spokesman Prishantha Jayakody,who arrived from Australia a short while ago, claimed that he fled the country because of threats byformer Defence Secretary GotabayaRajapaksa and some of his henchmen.He said he was compelled to leave under political pressure and fears for his life.“I served as the Police Media Spokesman and as Ratnapura SSP in Ratnapura but I had to leave the country because of severe political pressure I faced. When I refused succumb to these pressures I received death threats from former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa and some of his sycophants.I’m back after one year and seven months because there is good governance now and I believe things will be different with the situation in the country […]