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Rajitha denies he accepted minister post

Nov 3 (AD) UNP MP Dr Rajitha Senaratne says the reports by certain media that he is to be sworn in as a minister before the President are completely false. Issuing a statement, the former Health Minister said that his objective is to show the parliamentary majority of the UNF led by Ranil Wickremesinghe, as soon as possible. Senaratne said that he will never support any undemocratic conspiracy and that more..

‘Attempts underway to hide CID documents’

Nov 3 (NR) UNP MP Ajith P Perera says attempts are underway to hide documents pertaining to investigations carried out by the CID and FCID regarding corruption. He said special security must be deployed for the Attorney General’s Department. MP Perera requested IGP Pujith Jayasundara to take measures to safeguard the relevant documents and case files. He stated as a result of unconstitutional appointment of Mahinda Rajapaksa as PM, AG’s Dept is facing a severe threat. more..

The conundrum about the prorogation of Parliament

Nov 3 (FT) There is a big debate going on about the Prez’s decision to prorogue the Parliament of Sri Lanka. Apparently foreign parties and missions too are getting involved in the commotion, according to the reports in circulation. It is prudent to examine this in more detail because of the underlying dubiosity. In the original Constitution of Sri Lanka, before it was amended last under the 19th Amendment, the governing provision for the prorogation of Parliament reads as follows; more..

The constitutional crisis explored

SL to host World Hindu Congress in May

Nov 3 (GDI) Minister Douglas Devananda said the World Hindu Congress will be held in Sri Lanka in May, 2019. He was participating at the special discussion held with the officials of the Department of Hindu Religious Affairs yesterday on the development of Hindu Religious and Cultural Affairs after assuming his duties as the minister. Several major kovils including Koneshwaram kovil, Trincomalee; Naguleshwaram kovil, Jaffna; Munneshwaram kovil, Chilaw; more..

International community, keep off!

Nov 3 (CT) The international community was knocked for a six when the media broke the news last Friday that the Prez had downgraded the extant Premier and had designated former President as the PM. Nonetheless, the citizens of the country did not seem rising against the new political development in the country, instead were jubilant and celebrating the event despite their political allegiance, race, religion and ethnicity, except for a small disgruntled portion of the population. more..

SL rivals target defectors amid bribery claims

Nov 3 (AFP) Attempts to win over MP defectors intensified in Sri Lanka's constitutional crisis Saturday amid growing pressure to let the suspended parliament hold a vote on the two rivals who each claim to be PM. Ousted premier Ranil Wickremesinghe has refused to accept his surprise sacking by President Maithripala Sirisena, who named former strongman president Mahinda Rajapakse in his place. more..

A.H.M. Fowzie appointed as State Minister

Nov 3 (AD) UPFA MP A.H.M. Fowzie has been appointed as the State Minister Of National Unity, Co-existence and Muslim Religious Affairs. He was sworn in before President Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat this morning. Meanwhile a new Cabinet Minister and a Deputy Minister were also sworn in last evening. UNP MP S.B. Nawinne was appointed as the Minister of Cultural Affairs, Internal Affairs and Regional Development while more..

Group of UNP MPs led by Ravi K seen at Wasantha Senanayake's residence

Nov 3 (AM) A group of UNP MPs were seen at Minister Wasantha Senanayake's residence, last morning. The group of MPs was led by UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake. MPs had visited Senanayake's house after 118 MPs supported a motion claiming former Prez Rajapaksa's appointment as the PM was unconstitutional and unacceptable. Their aim was to convince the crossover MP to support Ranil W. again. more..

'PM Wickremesinghe neither left office nor it fell vacant'

Nov 3 (Island) Former Minister Lakshman Kiriella submitted to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya a motion of no-confidence against PM Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday. The motion reads: Whereas in terms of Articles 46(1) of the Constitution. The Office of PM becomes vacant only if he dies, resigns, ceases to be a MP (by removal or otherwise), or if the Statement of Government Policy or Appropriation Bill are defeated or more..

Time running out to avert bloodbath: RW

Nov 3 (AFP) SL’s sacked PM Ranil Wickremesinghe has warned that time is running out to avert a bloodbath while voicing hope that parliament will resolve a damaging constitutional crisis in the coming days. Wickremesinghe, who has been holed up at the PM’s official residence for more than a week as thousands of supporters gather outside, said that desperate people could cause chaos on the Indian Ocean island. more..

'Power switch in the works for 4-5 months'

Nov 3 (FT) Less than a week after what was seen as an abrupt move by the President to replace the PM, Namal Rajapaksa, the son of the newly sworn-in Prime Minister, said that his father and the President had been in talks for around four to five months. On 26 Oct, President Maithripala Sirisena fired the elected PM Ranil Wickremesinghe and replaced him with Mahinda Rajapaksa. On Thursday, Namal Rajapaksa, more..

Uniform vouchers with Akila’s mug rile govt

Nov 3 (Island) A decision on what to do with the school uniform vouchers carrying the picture of former Education Minister Akila Viraj Kariyawasam would be taken next week, Education Ministry sources said yesterday. The Education Ministry had been ordered to print 4.5 million school uniform vouchers with the picture of former minister Kariyawasam to be distributed among schoolchildren when this term ends. more..

SL Parliament not for sale: rights group

Nov 3 (EN) A rights group on Saturday urged member of Sri Lanka’s parliament not to sell their votes to settle the power struggle between Ranil Wickremesinghe and Mahinda Rajapaksa. The Movement for Democracy asked MPs not to undermine the will of the people and democracy by falling victim to the bribes offered to change their vote. The group said the sacking of Wickremesinghe as prime minister and more..

IMF monitoring Sri Lanka closely; impact on program not assessed: official

Nov 3 (EN) The IMF is monitoring a political crisis in SL triggered by the contested appointment of Mahinda Rajapaksa as PM and Finance Minister last week, and is in touch at a technical level, an official said. SL has missed targets in an IMF program especially in forex reserves, after the central bank stopped mopping up foreign inflows in February and de-stablized a de-facto peg with the US dollar by cutting rates and injecting more..

A helping hand for stroke victims to get up again

Nov 3 (ST) Let’s get up again after a stroke, are the encouraging words being given out by several Consultant Neurologists echoing the theme of Up again after stroke of World Stroke Day which falls tomorrow (29). Reiterating that it is important for stroke sufferers to overcome disability which would keep them down and get back into society, they say that this is what the Stroke Support Organisation (SSO) is striving to achieve. more..

What else could be expected?

Nov 3 (DM) Before Mahinda Rajapaksa was sworn in as the new PM on Friday, did Prez Sirisena sack Ranil Wickremesinghe from the Prime Ministerial post or did the latter cease to hold office following the UPFA withdrew from the national Govt the same evening? Two versions come from those who endorse the last week’s so-called regime change. Prez Sirisena, citing an Article in the Constitution informed Mr Wickremesinghe on Friday night that he had removed the latter from the post. more..

Let the confusion subside

Nov 3 (DM) On Oct 26, political confusion broke out in SL. President Sirisena who had for months been carrying on a running battle with his PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, without a warning announced, out of the blues so-to-say, had appointed the popular and charismatic former President Mahinda Rajapaksa as his PM. He added, in an almost after-thought, that he had sacked Ranil Wickremesinghe, leader of the UNP from his premiership as the Cabinet of Ministers had collapsed following more..

President verbally informs Speaker

Nov 3 (CT) Speaker Karu Jayasuriya said that Prez Sirisena had verbally informed him that Parliament would be reconvened on 7 Nov. He however, added that the relevant Gazette was yet to be issued and hoped that it would be soon, noting that then it would solve a lot of problems. Jayasuriya said this while addressing a meeting, held yesterday at the Committee Room One in the Parliamentary Complex, more..

PM Ranil holds fast to post

Nov 3 (FT) PM Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday confirmed that President Sirisena had in fact insinuated that an Indian spy agency was involved in plotting his assassination at a heated Cabinet meeting two weeks ago. Details of the explosive Cabinet meeting made local and international headlines, but Prez Sirisena and members of the Govt staunchly denied the claims, which Presidential aides said nearly caused an intra-State crisis. In an interview with NDTV’s Sreenivasan Jain more..

Karu won't be replaced: UPFA

Nov 3 (DM) UPFA has informed Speaker Karu Jayasuriya that it has no intention of replacing him under the new govt. UPFA leaders met him at an informal meeting on Wednesday to discuss arrangements for the first session of Parliament after the prorogation. Speaker said PM Mahinda Rajapaksa would be assigned his seat on the govt side and that the new ministers would also be allocated seats based on seniority. When the Speaker said, he might also lose his post, more..

No Genneral Election soon: Govt

Nov 3 (CT) Parliament cannot be dissolved until it completes four and half years. So, there won’t be any General Election in the near future, said MP Nimal Siripala de Silva, on behalf of the new Govt. If the Appropriation Bill is rejected or a vote of no-confidence is passed with 2/3rds of the Parliament against the newly appointed PM Mahinda Rajapaksa, Prez Sirisena, will appoint another PM, who, in the Prez’s opinion, is most likely to more..

‘MP Sagala, no longer works for PMO’

Nov 3 (DN) The Office of the Prime Minister (PMO) releasing a statement yesterday stressed that UNP MP Sagala Ratnayaka no longer works for the PMO and that he could not use the official letterhead or pose as the Chief of Staff to the PM in any official capacity. Media Secretary to the PM, Rohan Welivita in the statement noted that the UNP MP on 2018.11.01, had issued a statement using the official letterhead of the PMO but given that he no longer holds his previous position, more..

RW-GR meeting fails to break deadlock

Nov 3 (FT) A sudden hush-hush meeting between ousted Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe and former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa at Temple Trees on Thursday was the cause of wild speculation, but officials said the discussion was aimed at a peaceful resolution to the constitutional deadlock. Spokesman for the former Defence Secretary Milinda Rajapaksha said that the meeting had lasted seven minutes, from 4.10 p.m. to 4.17 p.m., and discussions were centred on more..

UN urges Sri Lanka to recall parliament amid bribery claims

Nov 3 (AJ) United Nations chief has urged Prez Sirisena to reconvene parliament and allow legislators decide between the two men claiming to be the South Asian country's rightful PM. A statement from Antonio Guterres' office on Friday said the secretary-general called on Sirisena to revert to parliamentary procedures and allow the parliament to vote as soon as possible during a phone conversation a day earlier. more..

RW in Temple Trees: BBS, Sinhala Ravaya complain to FCID

Nov 3 (DM) BBS Organiser Dapane Sumanawansa Thera, Sinhala Ravaya General Secretary Magalkande Sudaththa Thera and several others lodged the complaint. Speaking to the Media, Sudaththa Thera said it is a severe misuse of public property if MP Wickremesinghe is staying illegally at Temple Trees. Thera also said MP Wickremesinghe has no right to stay at Temple Trees when he was informed by a gazette notice removing him from the Prime Ministers portfolio. more..

We've the numbers: Prez

Nov 3 (DM) Prez Sirisena is reported to have told the SLFP Central Committee that he had the required number of MPs to form a stable govt. SLFP CC with the Prez in the chair met on Wednesday for the first time after the swearing-in of the new PM. President asked the members to cooperate with him to form a stable govt. The SLFP has decided to hold its executive committee and all island committee on Nov 8. The all island committee is the body which ratifies the decisions taken by the CC. more..

JVP denies pledging support to Ranil

Nov 3 (Island) The JVP said it would remain neutral as regards the ongoing power struggle between the UPFA and the UNP. It denied rumours that it had pledged support to ousted PM Ranil Wickremesinghe during a meeting, chaired by Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, at the parliamentary complex yesterday. JVP MP Dr Nalinda Jayatissa, contacted for comment, told The Island that he and his parliamentary colleague Vijitha Herath more..

Speak out, don’t be afraid, British envoy tells chartered accountants

Nov 3 (ST) Speak out and play a part in encouraging and fostering a climate favourable for wealth creation and entrepreneurial activity, British High Commissioner James Dauris has told SL’s chartered accountants. In more words of advice, he said: “Holding govt to account and representing the interest of the business community are critical functions of business leaders in any country. Speak out against things that are not good enough or makes them (accountants) fed up. more..

Prof. Maithree intervenes to cancel dinner for MPs at Temple Trees

Nov 3 (AM) UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe's wife, Prof. Maithree Wickremasinghe, has intervened last night to cancel a dinner organized for the UNP Parliamentary group at Temple Trees by insisting that all MPs eat the same Buth packets (බත් පැකට්) distributed to 5,000-odd supporters gathered at the Temple Trees premises. A UNP MP had sponsored the dinner for all MPs gathered at the official residence of the Prime Minister in support of Ranil Wickremesinghe. more..

'Cricketers volunteer to declare assets annually'

Nov 3 (CT) Should bring laws which will make it compulsory for administrators to declare their assets too. The Sports Minister Faiszer Musthapha said in the wake of the ongoing ICC anti-corruption investigations, cricketers who are contracted under Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) are ready to voluntarily declare assets annually. “This is remarkable, they volunteered to do it even though they are not legally bound to do so,” he said. more..

China allegedly abets horse trading amid political crisis in Sri Lanka

Nov 3 (ET) China allegedly has thrown its lot in encouraging horse trading in favour of Mahinda Rajapaksa as Sri Lanka's rival prime ministers battled to seek numbers to swing any parliamentary vote of confidence next week to end the country's constitutional crisis. Parliament has been suspended since President Maithripala Sirisena sacked Ranil Wickremesinghe as head of govt on Oct 26 and nominated former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to the post of PM. more..

'Lodge police compliant if offered money'

Nov 3 (DM) If UNP MP Palitha Range Bandara was offered money by the govt to cross over, he should lodge a compliant to the police without delay, UPFA MP Mahindananda Aluthgamage said. When asked whether anyone from the govt had offered a bribe to MP Range Bandara or others to join it, the MP said, “I saw that MP Range Bandara has made such an allegation. All I have to say is that if he was offered money, he should go to the police and lodge a complaint in this regard,” he said. more..

FFSL embroiled in their own accusations!

Nov 3 (ST) A Football Federation of SL (FFSL) internal investigation into several questionable transactions flagged in a 2015 Govt audit has concluded that no fraud was committed in the sporting body during the period under question (2004-2008) and that all accounts were duly audited by the AG's Department and passed at an AGM. Without even interviewing Manilal Fernando, former FFSL President and the main accused, more..

Badminton: Dinuka and Ranthushka meet in the men's open final today

Nov 3 (DN) Dinuka Karunaratne the defending champion once again put up a good fight to enter the men's open final when he defeated promising shuttler Buwaneka Gunathilleka with a hard fought three set win at the semi final played at the Royal College sport complex yesterday. Buwaneka who beat experienced Niluka the elder brother of Dinuka was well placed during the first set at the semi final leading 21/7 at the first set but Buwaneka fought back strongly to beat Dinuka to level more..

Lahiru Kumara warms up for Test: Rattles England’s top order

Nov 3 (DN) Test fast bowler Lahiru Kumara warmed up for the first Test against England with an impressive opening spell of bowling for Sri Lanka Board XI on the second day of the second 2-day warm-up match which ended in a draw at the CCC grounds yesterday. The 21-year-old Kumara proved what a fine seamer he is when he removed three of England’s top order batsmen within the space of five balls to have England collapse from 28-0 to 28-3 before Keaton Jennings with a solid 45 more..