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Cyberwar hits campaign for presidential poll

Nov 10 (ST) Facebook political advertisements have caused serious concerns for the National Elections Commission. “It is a challenging task to stop well targeted paid political ads,” NEC Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya said. “I don’t know how we can ensure all sorts of Facebook political campaigning activities are stopped after the ban on campaigning from midnight on Wednesday.” Facebook representatives came to SL more..

'Land and police powers to N-E if Gota wins'

Nov 10 (SO) Former LTTE commander and ex-UPFA MP Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman who recently pledged support to the SLPP prez candidate, said the Tamils of the North and East will be given some land and police powers if Gotabaya Rajapaksa wins the Nov 16 election. Karuna Amman, claimed that he has personally presented a number of demands to Gotabaya Rakapaksa when more..

A week that will shake Sri Lanka’s future

Nov 10 (GV) Who is winning? This seems to be the question many people these days are keen to find an answer to. Whenever this question is put to me, my usual answer is one that disappoints the interlocutor: “It is difficult to say. But I can tell you a little bit about what I speculate as the current trend…” Such an imprecise answer can hardly please those who are impatient to hear something to confirm what they wish to be more..

Sri Lanka: New reality

Nov 10 (FL) Late in 2011, as an invited group of residents of the posh Colombo-7 neighbourhood was partying in the Sri Lankan capital, an influential official took this correspondent aside and said, pointing to former President Chandrika Kumaratunga: “Watch her. She will be critical to a formation that will replace Mahinda [Rajapaksa].” It was difficult to take him seriously then. After all, Mahinda Rajapaksa had won more..

Monk demands proof Gota has renounced US citizenship

Nov 10 (RN) A Buddhist Monk, Dr. Inguruwatte Sumangala Thero is demanding that the SLPP Prez Candidate furnish proof that he has renounced his United States citizenship within three days. The Monk says he needs to see written proof of renunciation and will fast unto death unless this proof is given to him. Sri Lankan law prohibits foreign citizens or those holding dual citizenship from holding elected office. more..

'Sri Lanka to double Ceylon Black Tea exports to China within next 5 years'

Nov 10 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka aims to double its black tea export to China to 20 million kilos per annum within the next five years as more Chinese youth now favor black tea, an official said here Saturday. Chairman of the Sri Lanka Tea Board (SLTB) Lucille Wijewardena told Xinhua that the island country aims to change China into one of the leading export markets for Ceylon tea as it was a market with great potential. more..

Video: 'We will ensure the right to language'

Nov 10 (AD) NPP Prez Candidate Anura Kumara Dissanayake says that he will ensure the right to language. Speaking at a public rally in Kuliyapitiya, he pointed out that there are 2 mother tongues used in the country; Sinhala and Tamil. He says it is the responsibility of the govt to make sure that people can connect with the govt through their own mother tongue. “They should have the right to learn in their mother tongue. more..

SLC issues ultimatum to Malinga

Nov 10 (Island) Fast bowler Lasith Malinga’s days as Sri Lanka’s T-20 skipper are numbered as cricket authorities have given him an ultimatum that the team can not move forward with a string of poor results under his leadership. There was renewed hope ahead of next year’s World T-20 when a second string Sri Lankan side whitewashed Pakistan last month but it was all back to square one in Australia last week more..

I would feel safer under the presidency of Sajith: Ahimsa

Nov 10 (TM) Ahimsa Wickramatunga, daughter of slain journalist Lasantha Wickrematunge says she would feel safer under the presidency of Sajith Premadasa, a man who suffered horrifically at the hands of terrorists. She expressed these views in a letter addressed to the people of Sri Lanka. “Despite Sajith Premadasa’s role as a minister in this govt, which has let down many of us who fought for justice, more..

Sirisena may meet Premadasa the day before campaign ends

Nov 10 (ST) Barring today, there is only three more days to go for campaigning to close for the prez election. Campaigning by the two main candidates – Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Sajith Premadasa – have peaked. Amidst this, an advisor of Prez Sirisena is making a valiant effort to get him to meet NDF candidate Sajith Premadasa at a public event. Occasion he has chosen is Tuesday, just a day before the campaign closes. more..

Who has the lead? Who has momentum?

Nov 10 (Island) One more week to go. One last week for speculations. To be fair, I can cite one neutral and two partisan predictions. The neutral one plays it safe: Gotabaya has the lead, Sajith has momentum, and neither will win on the first count. Some Gotabaya supporters, however, are putting it out that Gotabaya will get it on the first count at 55%, no less. I first saw this in the gut-opinion of an emeritus academic. The same number has since been popularized in a journalistic piece more..

Irrelevance of Gota’s & Sajith’s Programmes

Nov 10 (Island) A commentator on a popular website remarked: "It’s a waste of time analysing or deciphering the manifestos of the major parties. If one scrutinises previous manifestos of new-style Presidents or old-style Prime Ministers, what have they delivered?" Another commentator added "A manifesto is worthless unless it is implemented. What proportion of past manifestoes have been? Only a small fraction; an indictment of the rectitude of candidates". more..

Both main candidates confident of victory at polls on Saturday

Nov 10 (ST) Discordant note came loud and clear from those who filled the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium last Tuesday and stood up to respect their party song SL Swarnabhoomiye. Contrary to the usual practice, only a section clapped loud. That gave the show away. Not all of them who attended a meeting of SL Nidhas Paksha Surakeemey Sanvidanaya or Org to Protect the SLFP were members of that party. more..

Forming new govt: SLPP and UNF planning ahead

Nov 10 (CT) The two main political alliances in Parliament, UPFA and UNF are currently holding talks with other political parties to form a new regime from 18 Nov onwards, depending on the final outcome of the 16 Nov Prez Poll, informed sources said. A JO source said that if SLPP Presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa were to win the coming poll, he would be sworn in as the new President on 18 Nov and he will then swear in his elder brother, current Opposition Leader more..

Tolls for newly opened parts of Southern Expressway announced

Nov 10 (AD) A gazette notification has been published announcing the new toll fees of the recently declared open parts of the Southern Expressway. The subject Minister Kabir Hashim issued the Extraordinary Gazette notification yesterday (8). The third phase of the Outer Circular Road, which links the Southern Expressway and the Katunayake Expressway with a 9.6km stretch of road spanning from Kadawatha to Kerawalapitiya and section from Barawakumbura to Mattala more..

Video: Royal Park murder convict on death row granted Prez pardon

Nov 10 (AD) Jude Shramantha Anthony Jayamaha, who was sentenced to death over the Royal Park murder case in 2005, an incident that gained much media attention at the time. The Commissioner General of Prisons T.M.J.W. Thennakoon said the Prisons Department today (9) received the document signed by the President to grant Prez pardon to the convicted. Shramantha Jayamaha was convicted of more..

Dairy farms hit by protectionist tax on quality feed

Nov 10 (EN) Sri Lanka’s dairy farmers who try to grow high yield milch cows cannot be given proper feed due to protectionist taxes on maize imports and domestically produced grain is of a grain more suited for human consumption, a top farming company official said. “We have to import dehydrated maize from abroad due to the lack of the proper nutrients in the locally produced maize,” Binesh Pananwala, CEO, Watawala Plantations PLC said at a meeting of a newly set up more..

Faulty cable disrupts power at BIA, system to be upgraded in 2020

Nov 10 (ST) A fauly power cable at BIA caused a power outage for a half hour Saturday morning, state-owned Airport and Aviation Services Ltd (AASL) said. The airport operations were disrupted for a short while, but AASL workers were able to locate the fault and restore power within 28 minutes, Executive Director Sanjeewa Wijeratne said. He said a 40 km long high-tension power cable ring installed 30-years ago, which is central to BIA’s electrical system, malfunctioned. more..

Main candidates full of hopes; tight security for Saturday’s prez election

Nov 10 (ST) The two major contenders at next Saturday’s prez elections have voiced confidence they would emerge victorious. Gotabaya Rajapaksa, contesting on the SLPP ticket, declared “I believe the voters will place their full confidence in me. I look forward to serving them as their Prez.” NDF candidate Sajith Premadasa said, “I have no doubt that voters will vote for me. It will preserve their right to change their leaders more..

Criminalizing corruption in cricket, a massive step forward

Nov 10 (Island) The new bill that will make corruption in cricket a criminal offence was expected to be presented to Parliament this week. Inexplicably it was held up. The bill is now expected to be presented on Monday, during a special sitting - provided Parliament is not prorogued by Prez Sirisena. Criminalizing corruption in cricket is an urgent need. With all parties supporting the move, if the bill is passed without much debate, corruptors face jail terms up to ten years if found guilty more..

Sri Lanka Cricket snubs physically challenged players

Nov 10 (SO) Sri Lanka Cricket has snubbed the Cricket Association for the Physically Challenged that recently won their ODI and T/20 games against the Cricket Wales Disability team affiliated to the England and Wales Cricket Board at Prince of Wales College ground Moratuwa. The home team won both matches that were worked off while two were affected by rain and not played. Lakshan Fernando president of the Cricket Association for the Physically Challenged said that they invited more..

Gota renunciation still a no show in US Federal Register

Nov 10 (SO) Question of SLPP candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s citizenship re-emerged last night, after the US Federal Register third quarter report released by the US Govt yesterday did not include his name in the list of those who renounced US citizenship. According to the document titled Quarterly Publication of Individuals, who have Chosen to Expatriate, the list contains the name of each individual who lost US citizenship more..

30 youths arrested at Facebook party

Nov 10 (AD) Thirty youths, including females, have been arrested early this morning (09) during a Facebook party that was organized at Meegoda area, says the Police Media Spokesperson. The arrestees include 21 males and 9 females. They are aged between 18 to 25 years and had been under the influence of drugs at the time of the arrest. Police had found 27g of heroin in possession of seven of the arrested youths while 200mg of Hashish was seized from another. more..

Gota is no longer a US citizen: Namal

Nov 10 (DM) MP Namal Rajapaksa has reiterated that SLPP Prez Candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa is no longer a US citizen. Let's clarify doubts about SLPP prez candidate's U.S. citizenship once and for all. Here's the proof! GotabayaR is no longer a U.S. citizen. The official unp can now move on to another mudslinging campaign, MP Rajapaksa tweeted. Earlier, Minister Harin Fernando questioned about SLPP’s presidential candidate’s citizenship with the latest US Federal Registry released more..

Sri Lankan clan with close China ties plots political comeback

Nov 10 (WSJ) A controversial political dynasty that made Sri Lanka a centerpiece of China’s efforts to expand its influence in Asia and defeated an insurgency is aiming to reclaim power in this island nation. Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who as defense secretary spearheaded the effort to crush a 3-decade-long revolt during his brother Mahinda Rajapaksa’s rule from 2005 to 2015, is now running for president in the Nov. 16 elections. more..

Attacks on Muslims will resume after Prez Election: Mahesh Senanayake

Nov 10 (Island) Former Army Commander Mahesh Senanayake, who is contesting the forthcoming prez election, says that extremists forces backing a certain prez candidate, would resume their campaign of vilification, harassment and attacks on Muslims after Nov 16. Participating in a dialogue with civil society members, Senanayake, a decorated soldier, said that attacks on Muslims which was a common feature prior to and after Easter Sunday suicide bomb explosions, more..

Port City Colombo signs MoU with NSBM Green University Town

Nov 10 (CT) Port City Colombo signed an MoU with South Asia's first-ever green uni, NSBM Green University Town (NSBM) at the Port City Colombo's Sales Gallery on 7 Nov. Graced by members of the senior management of both institutions, MoU solidified the Port City Colombo project's collaboration and endorsement of NSBM's industry partnership programme. The Industry Partnership programme is designed to optimise synergies between NSBM and industry partners more..

New policies in the pipeline on election campaign funding

Nov 10 (ST) While the prez poll is all set for next Saturday (16), billions of rupees have been pumped in for election campaigning by various parties on behalf of their respective candidates. How and where the money came from remains a mystery, unless otherwise a report on the expenses incurred is declared by each party or candidate to the Election Commission (EC). EC has taken note of all the campaign funding and is now preparing more..

Economists advocate policies not persons

Nov 10 (SO) The future Head of State and his or her govt must cast aside short-term petty and popular programs focused on addressing issues of the moment and instead focus on long-term strategies to develop competencies through a knowledge and technology based economy, if the country is to get over its economic woos and achieve prosperity, economists said, urging voters to give priority to policies and not persons. With less than a week to go for a decisive election that will determine more..

Governors campaigning for Gota: EC

Nov 10 (SO) Election Commission has reportedly written to the President about complaints received that at least four Provincial Governors were taking part in electioneering, violating polls law, authoritative sources said. The independent election monitors, CMEV and PAFFREL have complained to the Election Commission that the governors who were representatives of the Prez were misusing their powers and resources in the respective Provincial Councils to promote SLPP candidate. more..

මැතිවරණ කොමිසමේ සභාපති

Ranatunga heads Colts with plans for state-of-the-art development

Nov 10 (SO) Colombo Colts Cricket Club, the oldest Ceylonese Cricket Club founded in 1873, held its 146th Annual General Meeting last month with the participation of a large number of Members where Nishantha Ranatunga was re-elected as president unanimously for the ensuing year 2019/20. Trevor Rajaratnam was re-elected Patron while Jagath Savanadasa and Tissa Abeywardena were elected Vice Patrons. K Mathivanam, Jagath Savanadasa and and Tissa Abeywardena were elected more..

Matthew to lead swimming team for SAG

Nov 10 (ST) Sri Lanka suffered a huge blow to its medal prospects in swimming after female swimming sensation Kimiko Raheem pulled out of the South Asian Games with an injury. The 13th edition of the South Asian Games will be held from Dec 1-10 in Kathmandu, Nepal where SL will field 19 swimmers –11 male and eight female. Star swimmer Matthew Abeysinghe has been named as captain of 19-member strong squad. Alongside Abeysinghe, Akalanka Peiris, Kavindra Nugawela, more..

Gateway’s Amrith shatters famous record

Nov 10 (ST) Amrith Perera of Gateway College broke Kyle Abeysinghe’s 200m Individual Medley meet record at the 25th edition of SL Inter-int'l Schools Swimming Championship, organised by Asian Int'l School. Event is currently being worked off at the Sugathadasa Stadium Swimming Pool Complex in Colombo. Perera, competing in Under-20 age category, clocked 2 minutes and 19.62 sec more..

Gota’s first test: handling the transition of power

Nov 10 (Island) By this time next week, the results of the prez poll would be rolling in. It is very unlikely that the final result would have been announced by the time the newspapers hit the newsstands. Indeed the Elections Commission has said that the final result may not be announced till Monday Nov. 18. Be that as it may, the likely scenario at this election is that the govt would be defeated. The Lanka News Web website which can hardly be described as pro-Rajapaksa, observed somberly after more..

A whole top order of wicket-keepers? Here’s another one

Nov 10 (Island) Sri Lanka’s newest wicket-keeping sensation Minod Bhanuka had a chat with Sunday Island on the experience of his debut series in Pakistan and his cricketing career on a whole. The first glimpse of Bhanuka looked like he was someone who could bring much needed energy to a depleted Sri Lankan team. He in fact did exactly that during the T20Is in Pakistan though he hardly got an opportunity with the bat. He did impress on his ODI debut with the bat too, but more..