President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s personal defence lawyer as the Cabinet minister of justice could be the final blow for victims of gross human rights violations

The appointment of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s personal defence lawyer as the Cabinet minister of justice could be the final blow for victims of gross human rights violations who have been struggling for justice for over a decade . Mohamed Ali Sabry with Gotabaya Rajapaksa | File photo Gotabaya Rajapaksa is at the very least a person of interest in several key cases involving the attacks on journalists Keith Noyahr, Upali Tennakoon and the assassination of Sunday Leader Editor Lasantha Wickrematunge in 2009. A suspect arrested in connection with Prageeth Ekneligoda’s abduction…

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Polls postmortems

Critics of former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe danced in the streets, the other day, when it was reported that he had finally decided to step down as the UNP leader. But their joy was short-lived; he announced that he would lead the party until his successor was anointed. Now, he says he will be the party leader until the next provincial council elections! Giving reasons for the UNP’s defeat, Wickremesinghe has reportedly told a group of unsuccessful party candidates, at Sirikotha, that the UNP-led government had to work with a…

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Gota And The Ministry Of Defence: What Are The Ways Out?

Although the Government’s official communique on the Cabinet of Ministers named President Gotabaya Rajapaksa as the Minister of Defence, the relevant Gazette notification has no such entry. Article 43(2) of the Constitution, as amended by the Nineteenth Amendment, provides that the President shall, on the advice of the Prime Minister, appoint from among Members of Parliament, Ministers, to be in charge of Ministries determined. Thus, although the President continues to be the Head of the Cabinet of Ministers, he cannot hold a Ministry; only MPs can. This is fortified by the transitional provision…

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SLFP “deeply disappointed” over Cabinet positions

ECONOMYNEXT – The Sri Lanka Freedom party (SLFP) is “deeply unhappy” over the treatment given to it by the governing Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna in the distribution of Cabinet positions as well as the allocation of National List Seats, a senior party member said. Prof Rohana Luxman Piyadasa, a former General-Secretary of the party told EconomyNext that there is “disappointment within our ranks that there is no sharing of power with us as we were the main ally which gave the alliance a two-thirds majority.” SLFP members won 14 seats…

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ITAK to appoint independent committee to probe its electoral setback

Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (ITAK) has decided to appoint an independent committee to find the causes of the setback it suffered at the recent general election. It was decided to appoint this committee at its Central Committee meeting to be held on August 29.  The decision was taken when the ITAK politburo met at TNA leader, R. Sampanthan’s residence on Saturday. The Committee is expected to give its findings soon. more

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Wiggy sounds amenable to working with new govt

By Norman Palihawadana Newly elected Jaffna district MP and retired Supreme Court Judge C.V. Wigneswaran yesterday attributed the overwhelming SLPP victory to the recent unity among the Sinhala people and that given the trends, he was not surprised. Asked whether such unity among the Sinhalese had not been prevalent before, Wigneswaran said that it was a recent development and that he appreciated the unity among the Sinhalese. The former TNA Chief Minister of the Northern Province said he believed that the SLPP government had the ability to serve the nation…

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Landslide Victory in Sri Lanka Gives Rajapaksa brothers, the family and their party the power to reshape Sri Lanka’s political institutions in fundamental – and potentially dangerous – ways.

By Alan Keenan Wednesday, 5 August saw the landslide general election victory of the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP), led by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and his brother, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa. The vote sets Sri Lanka on a path likely to bring fundamental political and social change. With 59 percent of the vote, the SLPP won enough seats – together with allied parties – to achieve the two-thirds parliamentary majority they requested from voters in order to change the constitution. With executive power shared between the Rajapaksa brothers, the family…

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Failed Attempt To De-legitimize Sumanthiran’s Election Victory In Jaffna

By D.B.S.JEYARAJ The one word answer to the question “Did M. A. Sumanthiran of the Tamil National Alliance win in the Jaffna Electoral district by “stealing” the preference votes cast for another TNA candidate Ms. Sashikala Raviraj? is NO! Yet the 2020 Parliamentary poll in the Jaffna electoral district comprising the Kilinochchi and Jaffna administrative districts was marred by untoward incidents based upon unfounded allegations that Sumanthiran had “transferred” the preference votes of Sashikala in his favour and won the election. Moreover for the first time in Sri Lanka’s electoral…

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