August 2015

Sri Lankan investigators recommence corruption probe against former regime

21st August 2015 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO, Aug. 21 (Xinhua) — Sri Lanka’s new United National Front (UNF) government on Friday re-started a corruption probe against the former government headed by Mahinda Rajapakse by questioning a former senior minister. Wimal Weerawansa, the previous health minister, was questioned by officers of the Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID) on Friday over the misappropriation of funds when he was in power. His wife Sashi Weerawansa was also summoned to the FCID on Thursday to make a statement regarding the assets she owned. The UNF government who was temporarily sworn to power following the victory of Maithripala Sirisena in a January presidential election had begun a corruption probe against Rajapakse, his family and former senior ministers for alleged misappropriation of funds amounting to billions during […]

Majority community rejects racist politics

21st August 2015 // 0 Comments

M.M. Zuhair The National United Front (NUF) led by M. M. Zuhair PC, former Member of Parliament has welcomed the victory of the United National Front (UNF) at the general election 2015 as a rejection by the Sri Lankans of communal and racist politics. “This rejection is further reinforced by the majority community in particular defeating the anti-minority Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) sponsored BJP, in every one of the 16 electoral districts it contested. The message of the people is clear: “No more racist or communal politics.” The NUF has said in a media statement: “The time has come for minority political parties, too, to shed communal politics and work for national development and for the advancement of the country as a whole. It would […]

Extremists on both sides of ethnic divide defeated

21st August 2015 // 0 Comments

by Dilanthi Jayamanne The Trade Union Alliance for a Just Society (TUAJS) yesterday said that certain extremist groups that contested Monday’s general election had been defeated by the people.  Addressing a media briefing in Colombo, Convenor for the TUAJS, Saman Ratnapriya said the number of votes received by Bodu Bala Sena and extremist Tamil groups comprising former members of the LTTE, had shown that people preferred to live in harmony.  Ratnapriya, who is also the Chairman of the Government Nursing Officers Association (GNOA), campaigned with several other government and private sector trade unions for the victory of the UNP. They also played a major role during Jan. 8 presidential election.  He maintained that they were all apolitical trade unions which had realised the need for a change of government and […]

Alternative Tamil political parties and ‘clean’ politicians

21st August 2015 // 0 Comments

Already Tamils in the North have started to protest against the “FEDERAL” system which does not promote reconciliation at all. Instead, it draws division lines in terms of boundaries. A good example to these divisions is the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) does not represent the common Tamils’ grievances. It addresses the politician’s grievances. The rise of Crusaders for Democracy (CFD) under the co-ordination of Nadesapillai Vithiyatharan has changed the whole political picture in the North. The TNA should be blamed for the rise of CFD (a new political group). The TNA was riding high in the North and East for the last three decades. Tamils did not have alternative parties to vote, as a result whether the TNA delivers the goods or not, Tamils used […]

The Sihala Urumaya is dead

21st August 2015 // 0 Comments

n October 10, 2000, there was a parliamentary election. Two days later, a newly-formed party split over its National List seat. The Central Committee had selected one person for that seat. This person had later resigned over the split, a problem given that he was the party’s president. Worse still, the split had been a tug-of-war between him and a younger rebel, who was apparently hell-bent on forcing everyone into selecting him. In the end, that rebel got what he wanted. He got the seat. SL Gunasekera, the president, had commented on him and his faction: “A set of intolerant Talibans.” The Sihala Urumaya got 1.48 percent of the votes that year. In 2001, when another parliamentary Plection was called (one which saw the defeat […]

Gota’s Death Squad Likely Killers Of Thajudeen

21st August 2015 // 0 Comments

The murder of popular ruggerite Wasim Thajudeen was likely carried out by former Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s ‘death squad’, Colombo Telegraph reliably learns. According to a group of ruggerites who were part of ‘Rajapaksa prince’ Yoshitha Rajapaksa’s entourage on the night of Thajudeen’s death – following a heated exchange of words between the two, an angry Yoshitha had met Gotabaya Rajapksa in person later that night and demanded for ‘Thajudeen to be done away with’. At this point, Yoshitha had been egged on by several other players of the Navy rugby team who had urged him to ensure Thajudeen’s removal, pointing out he had always ‘disrespected’ the Rajapaksa brothers. Sources claim the ‘Rajapaksa princes’ attempted to recruit Thajudeen to the Navy team on several occasions, but […]

Chandrika Kumaratunga Attending SLFP Central Committee Meeting After Absence of 10 Years Greeted with Thunderous Applause.

21st August 2015 // 0 Comments

By Chaminda Perera The Sri Lanka Freedom Party is to sign an MoU with the United National Party for the formation of a national government for a period of at least two years with the objective of solving burning issues faced by the country. The SLFP Central Committee which met under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena at the latter’s official residence yesterday, approved the formation of a national government with the United National Party led United National Front for Good Governance which bagged 106 seats at the 2015 parliamentary election. According to UPFA Acting General Secretary Professor Viswa Warnapala, a six member committee was appointed to discuss the formation of a national government. He said that this committee will discuss on the formation of national […]

NO War Crimes had been committed by the Sri Lankan forces says US

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

US exonerates SL of war crimes? Copy of UN War Crimes report to President By Sanjaya Dassanayake It is learnt that a copy of the report on war crimes, alleged to have taken place in Sri Lanka, which has been prepared by a special committee of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is to be handed over to President Maithripala Sirisena tomorrow (22). If such a report on human rights is prepared by the UNHRC against a certain country, it is the general tradition to make arrangements to hand over a copy of the report in confidence to the President of the relevant country prior to submitting it to the sessions of the Council. Although Opposition politicians mentioned on the election stages during the […]

OHCHR report names ‘43 individuals complicit in war crimes’

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

BY Ruwan Laknath Jayakody The report by the Office of the United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) contains the names of 43 individuals including those in the Army, Air Force and Navy as being allegedly complicit in war crimes, human rights abuses and violations. It is reliably learned that a report from the United States of America is going to clear Sri Lanka of war crimes by stating that Sri Lankan forces followed the Fourth Protocol of the Geneva Convention, which is relative to the protection of civilian persons in the time of war, stating that innocent people had been used as human shields for four to six months by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, and thus the Sri Lankan forces […]

Ranil equals his position to British Premier William Ewart Gladstone

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

Leader of the United National Party (UNP) and the leader of the United National Front for Good Governance (UNFGG) Ranil Wickremasinghe succeeded in polling 500,566 preferential votes. It is the highest number of votes polled by a candidate in Sri Lanka’s elections history. Ranil Wickremasinghe who contested from the Colombo District in the General Election which drew to a close on Tuesday(17) consolidated his victory polling 500,506 votes. Ranil Wickremasinghe who has served as the Prime Minister on three occasions, is slated to take oaths in this position for the fourth occasion. He will equal his position to that of Sri Lanka’s second Prime Minister Dudley Senanayake who held the premiership four times and with British Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone of Liberal Party who […]

Mahinda misfires

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

The new government has every chance to improve Sri Lankan lives Aug 22nd 2015 | COLOMBO | From the print edition Mahinda’s setback: whisper it quietly AT THE height of Sri Lanka’s parliamentary campaign, footage taken with a mobile phone went viral. It showed Mahinda Rajapaksa, an authoritarian former president running to become an MP, lunging at a member of the public, his fists clenched, before aides pulled him away. The short film suggested that Mr Rajapaksa already knew things were going badly for his group, the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA). Sure enough, his hopes of forming a government and becoming prime minister were dashed in the election on August 17th. Admittedly, he won a place for himself in parliament. But his alliance got […]

What made Vass Gunawardena use fake number plates for government vehicles?

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

Sajin In Remand Mastermind At Large By Nirmala Kannangara Questions have emerged as to why only former Galle District parliamentarian Sajin de Vass Gunawardena was brought before the law for misusing public property, whilst the alleged mastermind VVIP who gave blessings to carry out the alleged frauds is still at large. Although Vass Gunawardena is now languishing in remand custody over the past two months for the alleged misuse of a fleet of vehicles from the Presidential Secretariat, questions have been raised why his boss and the main suspect, who allowed Vass Gunawardena to misuse Presidential Secretariat vehicles for personal benefit, has been permitted to go scot free. The Sunday Leader therefore presents to its readers details on how vehicles that belonged to the Presidential […]

JVP Arrives At Compromise: Appoints Handunnetti, Mayadunne As National List MPs

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

The JVP named former Parliamentarian Sunil Handunnetti and former Auditor-General Sarath Chandra Mayadunne as its national list MPs. Mayadunne led the list submitted to the Elections Commissioner by the JVP on July 13. Handunnetti contested the election from Matara District and but failed to enter the parliament. There was a strong campaign by some JVP supporters demanding the appointment of Handunnetti through the national list. There was another demand to appoint K.D. Lalkantha through the list. The party politburo was reportedly divided over the matter and ended up in a compromise. JVP National List: Chrishmal Warnasuriya Hits Back At Anura Dissanayake 20-08-2015 Prominent lawyer Chrishmal Warnasuriya expressed his frustration at the decision… JVP Decided To Appoint Handunnetti Following Strong Demands, Says Bimal Rathnayake 20-08-2015 Janatha […]

Weerawansa blames President Sirisena for the defeat

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

by Dasun Edirisinghe Leader of the National Freedom Front (NFF) and MP elect Wimal Weerawansa yesterday said that if President Maithripala Sirisena had not slapped obstacles in its path, the UPFA would have secured more seats and defeated the UNP at Monday’s election. He said now the UPFA would function as a strong opposition as it had 95 seats in Parliament. Weerawansa vowed not to betray the people’s mandate by supporting the UNP in Parliament. The people had voted for the UPFA to look after their interests. He blamed President Sirisena for having issued statements against former President Mahinda Rajapaksa who led the UPFA general election campaign. A letter sent to Rajapaksa in the closing stages of the election had repeated that even if the […]

Internal squabbles of TNA intensify

20th August 2015 // 0 Comments

By Shamindra Ferdinando Having consolidated its position in the Northern Province, the four-party Tamil National Alliance (TNA) is seeking to neutralise an influential section within the coalition. TNA candidates contested the recently concluded Aug. 17 parliamentary polls on the Illankai Thamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK) ticket. The TNA alleged that certain persons had tried to sabotage its propaganda campaign, thereby depriving them of the opportunity to win all seven seats in the Jaffna peninsula at the Aug. 17 parliamentary polls. The TNA secured five seats in the Jaffna peninsula while the EPDP and the UNP shared one seat each. Sources said that the TNA leadership had been strongly critical of its Northern Province Chief Minister former Supreme Court judge C. V. Wigneswaran for not throwing his […]

Stop branding people as ‘plantation Tamils’

19th August 2015 // 0 Comments

BY Mirudhula Thambiah Popular civic rights activist in the plantations, Odaiyan Arumugam said the new government that comes into power should mainly ensure that plantation Tamils are not just people living in the country but identified as citizens of Sri Lanka of Indian origins. “If we brand them as plantation Tamils, they will be identified as inferior or only confined to plantation. Giving them equal status with other communities could be a positive step as they have so many years of political development,” he said. Excerpts of an interview: ?. What are your suggestions to ensure the identity of plantation Tamils when the new government is formed? A: Why should we call them plantation Tamils? There are other communities in Sri Lanka. They also should […]

Rajapaksa’s Loss Spells Victory For Democracy

19th August 2015 // 0 Comments

By R Hariharan – Former president Mahinda Rajapaksa’s hopes of coming back to power as Sri Lanka’s prime minister crashed when the. United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA), which fielded him as a candidate, lost out narrowly to the United National Party (UNP)-led coalition in the parliamentary election held on August 17. In the most peacefully conducted election in Sri Lanka in recent times where over 70 per cent of the people are said to have voted, the UPFA could win only eight of the 22 electoral districts as against its rival UNP’s victory in 11 districts. The Ilankai Tamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK)-led Tamil National Alliance (TNA) won in three predominantly Tamil districts of Jaffna, Vanni and Batticaloa South. It would support UNP-led government rather than […]

Ranil reigns, Mahinda mauled!

19th August 2015 // 0 Comments

Ranil to be sworn in as PM as UNF wins  Sirisena loyalists tipped to defect and join National Government  Mahinda magic fails; says “My dream of becoming prime minister has faded away” Analysts predict Rajapaksa will not bow out; MR-MS power struggle to continue  JVP disappoints; party strongmen ousted in poll  JVP anti Rajapaksa campaign may have had role in ex-Prez’s poor showing: observers  TNA makes major gains, wins 16 seats  By Dharisha Bastians  Voters rejected former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s prime ministerial bid yesterday, routing his party in a tight electoral contest and issuing a fresh mandate to the coalition that defeated him in January to carry forward democratic reforms, reconciliation and anti-corruption efforts. Monday’s Parliamentary contest crawled to a nail-biter of a finish yesterday, with both main parties neck-and-neck […]

TNA welcomes new Govt

19th August 2015 // 0 Comments

TNA welcomes new Govt By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) said that, based on their Election Manifestos, the party would be addressing the Tamil people’s immediate needs and implement them … without any delay as soon as the new Parliament is formed. The TNA, which swept the entire North and the East in the parliamentary election held on 17 August, said that they would also welcome the new Maithri-Ranil Government to continue to protect and nurture the people’s mandate that was bestowed upon them in the 8 January presidential election. TNA Leader R. Sampanthan, relaxing at his Trincomalee residence, told the media that the Tamil people have once again showered them with victory which shows the strong faith the Tamils have in the […]

20 Big losers at General election

19th August 2015 // 0 Comments

S.B.Dissanayake (UPFA-Mahanuwara), Mahinda Samarasinghe (UPFA-Kalutara), Vijith Vijithamuni Soysa (UPFA-Moneragala), Shantha Bandara (UPFA-Kurunegala), Nirupama Rajapaksa (UPFA-Hambantota), Sunil Handunetti (JVP-Matara), R. Yogarajan (UNP-Nuwara Eliya), Rear Admiral Sarath Weerasekera (UPFA-Digamadulla). Jagath Pushpakumara (UPFA-Moneragala), Piyasena Gamage (UPFA-Galle), Milroy Fernando (UPFA-Puttalam), Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena (UPFA-Matara), V.K. Indika (UPFA-Kurunegala), Nandimitra Ekanayake(UPFA-Matale), Rohana Dissanayake (UPFA-Matale), Uditha Lukubandara (UPFA-Badulla), P. Dayaratne (UPFA- Ampara) Lakshman Seneviratne (UPFA-Badulla) Tissa Karaliyadde (UPFA-Anuradhapura). Suresh Premachandran (TNA – Jaffna)

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