How the People of Sri Lanka United Briefly to Help Each Other After the Tsunami 10 years Ago

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Ten years ago on December 26th 2004 a series of giant Tsunami waves engulfed the coasts and littoral areas in different parts of Sri Lanka. It was a terrible tragedy that resulted in tremendous loss of human life,limb and property.Until the destructive waves rolled over our shores on that fateful day most Sri Lankans were unaware of the Japanese word Tsunami.Today it has entered the vocabulary of the Sri Lankan people in everyday life.

TSUNAMI2014A

Tsunami art show organized by The National Museums and Galleries of Wales-a collection of art by child survivors of the tsunami in Sri Lanka was displayed in the UK throughout 2005 as fundraisers to help the victims-more pics

Five days after the calamity, Sri Lanka’s national disaster management centre issued a report on December 31st 2004 outlining the losses and damages caused by the Tsunami.28,508 people had been killed and 5023 persons were reported missing but presumed to be dead.12,482 people had sustained injuries.899,408 persons were displaced from 215,804 families affected by the Tsunami. Apart from public buildings a total of 79,100 dwellings were totally destroyed. Another 20,708 houses were partially damaged.267,785 displaced persons from 20,206 families were being housed in 791 makeshift camps.It was the single biggest tragedy caused by nature in post-independence Sri Lanka!
Continue reading ‘How the People of Sri Lanka United Briefly to Help Each Other After the Tsunami 10 years Ago’ »

Maithripala Cabinet will have 18 Ministers-Ranil -PM, Chandrika-Finance, Fonseka-Defence, Mangala-Foreign Affairs, Sajith-Environment etc

Whilst the signs of grass root activities for the Common Alliance was hardly making a blip on the journalistic radar screens, the candidates’ principal backers Chandrika Kumaratunga and Ranil Wickremesinghe were busy playing politics.

An inspired leak revealed that a Sirisena-led administration will have a mean and lean cabinet of ministers, numbering just 18.


Twelve members were already named according to leaked information:-
They are –

Maithripala Sirisena – President

Ranil Wickremesinghe – Prime Minister

Sarath Fonseka – Defence

Chandrika Kumaratunga – Finance

Athureliya Ratana Thero – Religious & Buddhist Affairs

Continue reading ‘Maithripala Cabinet will have 18 Ministers-Ranil -PM, Chandrika-Finance, Fonseka-Defence, Mangala-Foreign Affairs, Sajith-Environment etc’ »

Minister Maithripala Sirisena’s Attempt in 2013 to Obstruct Justice to Safeguard Son Daham who Attacked Asela Waidyalankara

By
D.B.S.Jeyaraj

Nov 21, 2014-pic via: facebook.com/PresidentMaithripala

Nov 21, 2014-pic via: facebook.com/

(Former Health minister Maithripala Sirisena is the man of the moment having quit the UPFA Govt and coming forward as the common opposition candidate challenging incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa for the Presidency with the slogan “Supirisidu Nayakathwayak, Maithree Palanayak”.This article was written by me at a time when Maithripala Sirisena was riding high as a powerful govt minister. This particular piece is about how Maithripala Sirisena’s son daham Sirisena and his drunken friends assaulted Asela Waidyalankara in front of his wife at a beach resort in Paasikudah in Batticaloa district.Asela the son of Senior DIG Police Ravi Waidyalankara was hospitalised as a result of the assault.In what was a blatant abuse of his ministerial powers, Daham’s father Maithripala allegedly used his political clout to obstruct justice in a bid to save his son from being penalised for the assault. I wrote this article in detail then as none of the mainstream media publicised what had happened in full then. This article which was first posted on March 1st 2013 is being re-posted here without any changes due to numerous requests from readers………..DBSJ)
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Sri Lanka today is a land of perplexing paradoxes and ironic contradictions. A former Army commander is forcibly dragged to captivity and court-martialled on flimsy charges by military personnel and officers who served under him.

The De jure Chief Justice of the country is “removed” from office on the basis of an adverse report presented by partisan Govt MP’s after Parliamentary Select Committee proceedings amounting to a Kafkauesque trial.

~ Asela Waidyalankara in Hospital ~ pic via: twitter/MangalaS ~ Mangala Samaraweera

The latest episode in this serial is the incident in the East where the only son of the serving Deputy Inspector General of Police is ruthlessly assaulted in an area within his father’s official jurisdiction. While the victim of the assault lies in a Colombo hospital, the father of the chief assailant a powerful cabinet minister is engaged in brazen efforts to thwart the course of justice to safeguard his son.

Continue reading ‘Minister Maithripala Sirisena’s Attempt in 2013 to Obstruct Justice to Safeguard Son Daham who Attacked Asela Waidyalankara’ »

“Lankan Opposition Takes Anti-China Stand in Crude Attempt to Win Indian Support”-Dayan Jayatilleka

By

Meera Srinivasan

Amidst concern in India over the growing Chinese presence in Sri Lanka, the joint opposition platform here has begun questioning China’s role in the island nation ahead of the January 8 presidential election.

Earlier this week, leader of the United National Party (UNP) and former Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe pledged to scrap the $1.34-billion Chinese-funded Colombo Port City Project, citing threats to the environment, once the joint opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena comes to power.
Beijing’s investments

The port city — Sri Lanka’s largest single foreign investment inaugurated by Chinese President Xi Jinping in September — is being built alongside an existing Chinese-built container terminal, visible from Colombo’s famous Galle Face green stretch. China, as per the agreement with Sri Lanka, will gain ownership of a third of the nearly 580 acres of reclaimed land where the port city is to come up.

Recently, Champika Ranawaka — leader of the Jathika Hela Urumaya or National Heritage Party, a party predominantly of Buddhist clergy — had warned that Sri Lanka was heading towards bankruptcy due to heavy reliance on borrowing from other countries.

Continue reading ‘“Lankan Opposition Takes Anti-China Stand in Crude Attempt to Win Indian Support”-Dayan Jayatilleka’ »

Position Paper on Promoting Reconciliation Produced by Young Parliamentary Leaders Forum was Ignored by President’s Office.

By

Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.


Enemies of the President’s Promise
The Prince – 1

It is not likely that the President will be awakened swiftly from the enchantment cast upon him by his closest advisers. However, if and when he does realize that a change is essential if he is to preserve not just his legacy, but even perhaps his Presidency, he has some obviously desirable remedies to hand.
For though the Parliamentary Select Committee has thus far achieved nothing, it has had some very sensible proposals brought before it by moderates within government. The Liberal Party made suggestions made on its experience of acting as a link between successive governments and representatives of Tamil parties, but even more important were the suggestions made by Vasantha Senanayake on behalf of a group of young politicians and professionals. Subsequently the Liberal Party, after studying the proposals, wrote to the PSC endorsing them.

Vasantha was the scion of a great political family. His great grandfather D S Senanayake had been Sri Lanka’s first Prime Minister, and his great uncle Dudley had been elected Prime Minister three times. Both had presided over Cabinets with representation from popular Tamil political parties.

Vasantha however had left the United National Party, which his great grand father had founded, and now sat in Parliament as a member of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party, to which the President belonged. He, like many other promising youngsters, had been sidelined by Ranil Wickremesinghe, who had, on the pattern of his mother’s cousin, J R Jayewardene, wanted absolute control of his party, and thought ability less important than personal loyalty.

Continue reading ‘Position Paper on Promoting Reconciliation Produced by Young Parliamentary Leaders Forum was Ignored by President’s Office.’ »

Maithripala and Ranil to Address Business Community at Interactive Forum “Let’s Unite”on December 23rd at Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel.


(Text of Press release Issued by the United National Party Media Secretariat)

Common Opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena will share his vision for a united and prosperous future for Sri Lanka with the business community at a key forum on Tuesday 23rd December from 10.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. at King’s Court, Cinnamon Lakeside.

Accompanying Mr. Sirisena will be UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe who will speak on the policy framework for boosting socio-economic development within a stable policy environment. The duo will address the business community at the interactive forum titled “Let’s Unite”

Continue reading ‘Maithripala and Ranil to Address Business Community at Interactive Forum “Let’s Unite”on December 23rd at Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel.’ »

“Minnal” (lightning) and “Idi” (thunder) at “Temple Trees” as Minister Rishad Bathiuddin and Sri Ranga MP Engage in Fisticuffs.

At the end of a hectic schedule addressing election rallies in the South, President Mahinda Rajapaksa returned to ‘Temple Trees’ last Monday evening.

SR RB FF

There he sat down to a discussion with Deputy Minister Muthu Sivalingam and Central Provincial Councillor Senthil Thondaman. The Ceylon Workers Congress duo was meeting Rajapaksa to urge that an interview be granted to Tamil Nadu’s Thanthi television network ahead of the presidential election. He agreed and the recording took place at ‘Temple Trees’ on Wednesday.


When the discussion was under way, T. Sri Ranga, a parliamentarian elected on the UNP ticket and now supporting the UPFA Government walked in to offer some unsolicited advice. He pointed to places where cameras and lights should be placed and how Rajapaksa should face them. He later withdrew.

Rajapaksa was visibly tired after addressing a string of election rallies. He told aides that he needed to rest and withdrew to the Janadipathi Mandiraya (Presidential Palace) in Fort. It was past 1 a.m. when a phone call woke him up. At the other end was Sri Ranga. He complained that he was assaulted by Minister Rishad Bathiuddin whilst he was at ‘Temple Trees’. An angry Rajapaksa queried whether that was the time to talk about the matter and declared he would go into it in the morning.

Continue reading ‘“Minnal” (lightning) and “Idi” (thunder) at “Temple Trees” as Minister Rishad Bathiuddin and Sri Ranga MP Engage in Fisticuffs.’ »

Does “Double Crosser” With an Extraordinary Conscience Udaya Gammanpila think he is the Dalai Lama of Theravada Buddhism?

By

Don Manu

JHU turncoat, twice crosser Udaya Gammanpila’s conscience is an extraordinary item in the man’s set up and has so far never fallen short of being able to rebound at an instant’s notice.

UG HIGH JUMP UG UG MR DOUBLE

Given the bashing, its proud owner says it has been subjected to this month – two whole sleepless days of shadow grappling with the invisible Holy Ghost – Gammanpila is a lucky bloke to own such a versatile, all weather product which shows no sign of wear and tear, coming as it does highly insured, in case it is accidentally left on a Polonnaruwa bus or is parked in another’s Colombo 4 garage by mistake and the address forgotten. Remarkably it also comes up with clever by half money raising ideas.

Consider earlier this year how Gammanpila hit the jackpot when his inner voice told him how to finance his Western Provincial Council election campaign. He asked the money from the public. He said he has powerful rich friends who would single handedly fund his election bid but that he does not like being under any obligation to them. For that would have meant, he said, he would have to do favours for them. Far more comfortable to ask the Great Lankan public to delve into their pocket bottom and come up with the hard earned dough to put Gammanpila on the easy road to provincial power.

Continue reading ‘Does “Double Crosser” With an Extraordinary Conscience Udaya Gammanpila think he is the Dalai Lama of Theravada Buddhism?’ »

Allegations of Widespread Corruption Raised Against the Govt by Champika Ranawaka at Launch of his book “Alapalu Arthikaya”

By

C.A.Chandraprema

alapalu-arthikaya-patali-champika

Allegations of widespread government corruption can be heard from the public stage at every election. Many allegations of government corruption have been made in the ongoing presidential election campaign and it may be pertinent to delve into some of the issues raised. At the ceremony held to launch his book ‘Alapalu Arthikaya’ Champika Ranawaka made the allegation that the cost of the first phase of the Norochchcolai power plant was estimated at 300 million USD for 300 megawatts in 2005. But that this figure was bumped up to 455 million USD in 2006 on various pretexts including the claim that a jetty had to be built.

He appeared to be implying that the cost of the power plant had been artificially bumped up with somebody pocketing many tens of millions. When we made inquiries about this, Mr M.M.C.Ferdinando the present Secretary to the Power and Energy Ministry made it clear that the initial estimate prepared on 9 June 2005 for Phase I of the Norochcholai plant was 398 million USD (and not 300 million) for 300 megawatts. He explained that the MOU signed by the General Manager of the CEB and the contractor on 30 August 2005 made reference to the 9 June 2005 proposal and that 398 million $ for 300 MW was the initial price agreed on.

Continue reading ‘Allegations of Widespread Corruption Raised Against the Govt by Champika Ranawaka at Launch of his book “Alapalu Arthikaya”’ »

What Maithripala Sirisena Proposes to do During his First 100 Days in Office if Elected President on January 8th 2015

facebook.com/maithripalas

facebook.com/maithripalas

100 Day Work Programme After Maithripala Sirisena Becomes President – Detailed diary description

January 2015

Saturday January 10

The new President, Maithripala Sirisena, will take his oath of office

Sunday January 11

A Cabinet of not more than 25 members, including members of all political parties represented in Parliament, will be appointed with Leader of the Opposition Ranil Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister

Monday January 12

In order to strengthen democracy, a National Advisory Council will be set up inclusive of representatives of parties represented in Parliament as well as Civil Society organizations.

Monday January 19


Parliament will meet Tuesday January 20

The Standing Orders will be amended and, in terms of Proposal 67/10 now tabled in Parliament, Oversight Committees will be set up comprising members of Parliament who are not in the Cabinet will be established and their Chairmanship will be given to representatives of all Ministers in consultation with the leaders of all parties represented in Parliament.

Wednesday January 21

The process will begin of abolishing the authoritarian executive presidential system and replacing it with an executive of a Cabinet of Ministers responsible to Parliament, and of repealing the 18th Amendment to the Constitution with legislation to establish strengthened and independent institutions, including a Judicial Services Commission, a Police Commission, a Public Service Commission, an Elections Commission, a Commission against Bribery and Corruption and a Human Rights Commission. This will be through a 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which will be presented to Parliament and passed as swiftly as possible.

Wednesday January 28

An all party committee will be set up to put forward proposals to replace the current Preference Vote system and replace it with an Mixed Electoral System that ensures representation of individual Members for Parliamentary Constituencies, with mechanisms for proportionality.

Continue reading ‘What Maithripala Sirisena Proposes to do During his First 100 Days in Office if Elected President on January 8th 2015’ »

Is it Wise, Prudent, Logical, Desirable or Fair and Ethical to Toss Out Mahinda and Usher in Ranil and Chandrika to Power With Maithri as a “Human Face”?

By

DR DAYAN JAYATILLEKA

In October 1988, accepting the UNP nomination at the Sugathadasa Stadium, Ranasinghe Premadasa complained in a bitter, biting aside, that as Prime Minister he had enjoyed “the powers of a peon”. That status is about to change if the Opposition wins, because the Maithri manifesto makes clear that the centre of gravity of executive power will undergo a decisive structural shift from the Presidency to the parliament and the Cabinet.

Thus Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe is tipped to be the most powerful Prime Minister since Madam Sirimavo Bandaranaike—far more powerful than the infinitely more deserving Mr. Premadasa was under President Jayewardene. If after a parliamentary election, a breakaway SLFP is the largest party and if ex-President Kumaratunga is the leader of that party, then it is she who will be the most powerful Prime Minister since her mother.

In this scenario, Mahinda Rajapaksa would have been shunted home to Medamulana. Is it only me, or is there something wrong with this picture?

What then are our real choices on January 8th 2015?

Continue reading ‘Is it Wise, Prudent, Logical, Desirable or Fair and Ethical to Toss Out Mahinda and Usher in Ranil and Chandrika to Power With Maithri as a “Human Face”?’ »

TULF Chief Anandasangaree Urges Tamils to Vote Independently Without Being Influenced by the TNA.

By

Shamindra Ferdinando

General Secretary of the Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) V. Anandasangaree yesterday urged the Tamil electorate to vote for incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa or Opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena at the January 8, 2015 presidential election, regardless of the instructions given by the Tamil National Alliance (TNA).

Political veteran Anandasangaree emphasised that every Tamil speaking voter should decide after carefully examining the ground situation without being swayed by the TNA again. “Examine various proposals put forwarded by rival camps that can benefit the country and different ethnic communities.”

Continue reading ‘TULF Chief Anandasangaree Urges Tamils to Vote Independently Without Being Influenced by the TNA.’ »

Maithripala Sirisena Manifesto is “Silent” on Minority Related Issues like Devolution andImplementation of 13th Constitutional Amendment

by

Meera Srinivasan

Sri Lanka will maintain equal relations with India and China, Maithripala Sirisena, joint opposition candidate in the coming presidential polls, said on Friday.

Releasing his election manifesto ahead of the January 8 polls — in which he will challenge the incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa — the former Minister said: “I would act to have closer relations with an attitude that would be neither anti-Indian nor dependent.”

In an apparent reference to Tamil Nadu’s role in India’s diplomacy with Sri Lanka, Mr. Sirisena said: “Our Indian policy will take into due consideration the diversity of India.”

Continue reading ‘Maithripala Sirisena Manifesto is “Silent” on Minority Related Issues like Devolution andImplementation of 13th Constitutional Amendment’ »

Rishad Bathiudeen Keeps Away From Election Meetings in Wanni and East Where President Rajapaksa Participated

by

Shamindra Ferdinando

UPFA constituent, All Ceylon Makkal Congress (ACMC) has skipped public meetings held in support of President Mahinda Rajapaksa in the Vanni electoral District and Batticaloa on Thursday and Friday, respectively.

Political sources told The Island that the absence of ACMC leader Industries and Commerce Minister Rishad Bathiudeen at UPFA rallies raised many an eyebrow in the wake of the prolonged delay in finalising electoral pact.

Continue reading ‘Rishad Bathiudeen Keeps Away From Election Meetings in Wanni and East Where President Rajapaksa Participated’ »

Mutuhettigama Transports his “Stage Burning”Henchmen From Police Station to Courts in Style on a Vehicle with Public Address system

By Norman Palihawadana and Madura Ranwala

UPFA Parliamentarian Nishantha Mutuhettigama yesterday took away three of his supporters arrested by the Wanduramba police on Thursday for setting ablaze the stage erected for Common Opposition Presidential Candidate Maithripala Sirisena there on Wednesday, along with a vehicle and the public address system.

The suspects were taken by MP Mutuhettigama with his supporters after having entered the police station there, while the police officers were getting ready to take the suspects to the Beddegama Magistrate court in the morning.

Continue reading ‘Mutuhettigama Transports his “Stage Burning”Henchmen From Police Station to Courts in Style on a Vehicle with Public Address system’ »

Maithripala Sirisena Unveils Roadmap to Deliver a “New Country” in 100 Days if he is Elected President on Jan 8 2015.

By

Dharisha Bastians

Candidate for the common opposition Maithripala Sirisena unveiled his roadmap for constitutional reform and pledged to deliver a ‘new country’ in 100 days, if elected as Sri Lanka’s eighth executive president on 8 January 2015.

Unveiling his election manifesto for the poll that is just three weeks away, Sirisena has pledged to scrap the 18th Amendment to the Constitution and hold a parliamentary election under the terms of an amended Constitution within three months of being elected.

In a bizarre twist, electricity supply to Viharamahadevi Park was interrupted while Sirisena was giving his manifesto speech. The connection was restored 15 minutes later, however, the common opposition candidate continued to speak without a microphone.

Continue reading ‘Maithripala Sirisena Unveils Roadmap to Deliver a “New Country” in 100 Days if he is Elected President on Jan 8 2015.’ »

How Senior Minister from Polonnaruwa CP de Silva Crossed Over With 13 MP’s From SLFP Govt on Dec 3rd 1964

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

CP de Silva

CP de Silva

Fifty years ago on December 3rd 1964 , Charles Percival de Silva the minister of Land, Irrigation and Power in the SLFP-LSSP Coalition Government of Prime Minister Sirima Bandaranaike crossed over to the opposition in dramatic fashion with a group of thirteen MP’s.

The CP de Silva crossover as the event was generally described resulted in the Sirima Bandaranaike Govt being defeated by one vote in Parliament. Consequently Parliament was dissolved and fresh polls held in March 1965. A new UNP led national Govt consisting of seven political parties was formed by Premier Dudley Senanayake.

The CP de Silva cross over is very much in the news these days due to two reasons. Firstly the current 2014 defection of Maithripala Sirisena from the UPFA Govt of President Mahinda Rajapaksa has evoked a sense of déjà vu about the 1964 CP de Silva crossover. There are some similiarities between the actions of these two Rajarata stalwarts who were both senior leaders of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) at the time of their respective defections.

CPDES121414N

Secondly the fiftieth anniversary of the CP de Silva cross over was on December 3rd this year. This naturally has aroused some interest among people desirous of knowing more about an important event that happened fifty years ago. The Sirisena defection is portrayed now as an exercise to promote greater democracy. Likewise the CP de Silva crossover was described as an act which saved press freedom in the country. The contours of the CP de Silva crossover is a fascinating tale worthy of being related on the occasion of its golden anniversary.
Continue reading ‘How Senior Minister from Polonnaruwa CP de Silva Crossed Over With 13 MP’s From SLFP Govt on Dec 3rd 1964’ »

Ex -Army Chief Sarath Fonseka’s “Wanted” Son in Law Dhanuna Tilakaratne Released on Bail After Surrendering to Colombo High Court

Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka’s son-in-law Dhanuna Tilakaratne was released on bail this morning after he surrendered to the Colombo High Court in connection with the HICROP (Pvt.) Limited fraud case.

He has been released on Rs. 400,000 bail and two sureties of Rs. 5 million each and surety should be relatives of the accused.

Releasing the accused under special reasons, the Judge Iranganee Perera also barred the accused from leaving the country.

Courtesy:Daily Mirror

The Tamil Voter in Common with Other Communities in the Island has the Same Values and Democratic Traditions.

By

Dr Nirmala Chandrahasan

There is currently a lot of speculation as to whether the Tamil voter would exercise his/her franchise in the upcoming presidential elections in the context that neither Presidential candidate has addressed the political issues pertaining to them.

SL121914

However it must be pointed out that the Tamil Voter is no different from any other citizen of the country and in common with members of the other communities they face the same economic problems, arising out of a high cost of living and lack of adequate livelihood /employment opportunities in the island.

The Tamil voter in common with the other communities in the island holds the same values and has the same democratic traditions. Hence they value good governance, the rule of law, a disciplined and uncorrupted police force, a judiciary which is impartial and whose integrity can be relied upon, a government which respects human rights, and in which the citizens right to information is given statutory recognition, an administration under which those accountable for public funds are punished for the waste, corruption and scams they may be responsible for, and political sycophants and unscrupulous businessmen are not given free rein to exploit the ordinary citizens of the country.

Continue reading ‘The Tamil Voter in Common with Other Communities in the Island has the Same Values and Democratic Traditions.’ »

Maithripala Sirisena Releases Policy Statement “Maithri Palanayak,Sthaavara Ratak”(Compassionate Governance,Stable Country)at Viharamaha Devi Park

By Chamara Sumanapala

Common candidate of the opposition Maithripala Sirisena stated that he takes personal responsibility in carrying out all his promises mentioned in his policy statement.

The document “Maithri Palanayak, sthaavara ratak” (A Compassionate governance, a stable country), was launched earlier today at the Viharamaha Devi Park.

Sirisena said that there were many questions asked about the 100 day program, and the program thereafter, by various sectors. All these questions will be answered in the new policy statement he said.

Continue reading ‘Maithripala Sirisena Releases Policy Statement “Maithri Palanayak,Sthaavara Ratak”(Compassionate Governance,Stable Country)at Viharamaha Devi Park’ »

After Mohan Peiris Became Chief Justice No one Believes the Sri Lankan Supreme Court will act with Independence Any more

By

Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.

Enemies of the President’s Promise 24

Sneezy 5

Tamara’s success in averting a resolution against us at the Human Rights Council in Geneva in September 2011 was not however to be repeated the following year. She had no say in the massive delegation that was sent, and the strategy to be followed. Though by then I had met her and liked her, even though she had also called asking me to be present at the sessions in March, I refused when the President first asked me, and was able to cite another commitment. But I did suggest to the President that he send Jeevan and Javid Yusuf, who had been a long-standing member of the SLFP and had served as our ambassador in Saudi Arabia at one stage. They both went, and the former established a close friendship with Tamara.

When the President asked again I could not refuse. Jeevan told me that he had suggested taking the draft of the LLRC Action Plan to Geneva, but been told it was not ready. While I was in Geneva I asked Mohan whether I could look at the draft, but he told me it was confidential. I asked then if he would show it to me in his presence, whereupon he said that he was doing it with the Foreign Ministry, and I should ask the Foreign Minister. I did so, whereupon G L Peiris said, ‘What draft?’

I could only deduce that Gotabhaya had told them not to bother, and GL had assumed that this was the President’s view too. Mohan however undoubtedly knew the real situation, and therefore continued to deceive the President about progress while, as with the LLRC interim recommendations, ignoring his instructions. So three months after the LLRC had reported, we had evidently done nothing to take matters forward.

Continue reading ‘After Mohan Peiris Became Chief Justice No one Believes the Sri Lankan Supreme Court will act with Independence Any more’ »

On January 8, 2015, “Exercise the public trust, as a Chief Magistrate”

by K. Thirukumaran

Exercising the privilege of voting – in any election is an utmost importance among civic duties.

Paaventhar Bharathithasan, Grover Cleveland and Subramaniya Bharathiyaar

Paaventhar Bharathithasan, Grover Cleveland and Subramaniya Bharathiyaar

As US President Grover Cleveland said, “Your every voter, as surely as your chief magistrate, exercises a public trust”.

Continue reading ‘On January 8, 2015, “Exercise the public trust, as a Chief Magistrate”’ »

Maithripala’s Political Challenge has made the Seasoned Politician Mahinda Become Reactive and Uncertain.

Dr.Kalana Senaratne

(Dr.Kalana Senaratne is a researcher and political analyst holding a doctorate in international law from the University of Hong Kong and contributes regularly to the Sri Lankan media.This article appears in the “Daily Mirror”)

MS MR 12 17 KS

The anti-regime camp led by Maithripala Sirisena is posing the most significant challenge to the present regime. President Rajapaksa has never faced such a challenge. But this is his decisive struggle, he knows it and his opponents know it very well, too.

It’s not that the Sinhala voters fail to acknowledge the leadership given by President Rajapaksa to defeat the LTTE; talk to them, and they will tell you that they appreciate the political leadership given (and no, they don’t buy former President Kumaratunga’s argument that she did 75% of the job before leaving office). But, many of these voters are unwilling to go beyond acknowledging this mundane fact. This election means more to them than showing gratitude to a politician. Rather, the Sinhala voters expect change; and even though they fear it would not be easy, a democratic, peaceful change of political leadership is what many desire.

One of the strengths of the anti-regime campaign lies in its ability to revive the idea that even the most unthinkable win over a leadership/regime is always possible in politics. It was this idea that was most forcefully revived in 2006-2007. For, the principal reason why the ‘peace-lobby’ lost the battle with the ‘pro-war’ establishment was largely because unlike ever before, those who supported the war truly believed that the LTTE could be defeated.

Continue reading ‘Maithripala’s Political Challenge has made the Seasoned Politician Mahinda Become Reactive and Uncertain.’ »

MA Sumanthiran MP Denies he Facilitated “Secret Deal” Between TNA and Maithripala Sirisena as Alleged by President Mahinda Rajapaksa

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) National list MP M. A. Sumanthiran has denied President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s allegation at a meeting in Chilaw that the TNA had signed a secret deal with Common opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena and that he (Sumanthiran)had facilitated it.

MS MAS MR NEW

The TNA Parliamentarian who is also a lawyer has challenged President Rajapaksa to provide evidence in support of his allegation

Sumanthiran’s categorical denial and challenge was made in Tamil to a Tamil website “Athavan News” over the telephone.( http://athavannews.com/?p=145831)
Continue reading ‘MA Sumanthiran MP Denies he Facilitated “Secret Deal” Between TNA and Maithripala Sirisena as Alleged by President Mahinda Rajapaksa’ »

“Are we Willing to risk Future of Sri Lanka by Weakening our resolve to Protect what we have Legitimately Achieved?

By

Gotabhaya Rajapaksa

(Excerpts from Speech made by Defence and Urban development Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa at the Synchronised Forum organised by the Professionals for a Stable Sri Lanka on the theme “MOMENTUM – A Nation Stabilised)

Secretary Defence and Urban Development Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa attended as a special guest speaker at the MOMEMTUM-pic: defence.lk

Secretary Defence and Urban Development Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa attended as a special guest speaker at the MOMEMTUM-pic: defence.lk

“The question we must all ask ourselves at this point in time is whether we are willing to risk the future of Sri Lanka by weakening our resolve to protect what we have legitimately achieved. Can we trust those whose past actions were dictated by external pressures to do what is best for Sri Lanka in the future?

The most critical thing for Sri Lanka today is the maintenance of stability. Ensuring that our present momentum does not falter requires continuity above everything else. All of the problems caused by three decades of terrorism and lax governance of past Governments cannot be solved in just five years. The sheer range of issues is far too great to have been dealt with comprehensively in such a short span of time. In fact, in consideration of how vast these challenges were, the progress that has been achieved by the incumbent Government since the end of the war is truly remarkable.
Continue reading ‘“Are we Willing to risk Future of Sri Lanka by Weakening our resolve to Protect what we have Legitimately Achieved?’ »

Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga Gets Passionately Emotional While Extolling the Virtues of Mahinda Rajapaksa

By
Marisa Wikramanayake

Lalith Weeratunga, longstanding civil servant and Secretary to the country’s Chief Executive, yesterday turned passionate at a public forum when explaining what set President Mahinda Rajapaksa apart from other leaders.

“President Mahinda Rajapaksa is decisive, transparent and always prioritises people’s interest and consults the public,” Weeratunga said in his comments at the concluding panel discussion of the first-ever synchronised forum for business and professional leaders in four hotels in the city.

The Secretary to the President also recalled four different agreements and treaties that had been decided upon in the past in secret without the public’s knowledge or approval and sometimes without presidential approval as well.

Continue reading ‘Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga Gets Passionately Emotional While Extolling the Virtues of Mahinda Rajapaksa’ »

De Jure Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake says she is not a Politician and will not enter politics or support any Presidential candidate

by Kamal Bogoda

Impeached Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake yesterday said that she would not support any candidate vying for the presidency.

Addressing the media outside the Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court after appearing in a case filed against her by the Bribery Commission, Dr. Bandaranayake said she would not enter politics because she still considered herself the country’s Chief Justice.

She said that she did not believe it was appropriate for a public servant to publicly campaign for any particular candidate. “I am not a politician. I will not enter politics.”

Continue reading ‘De Jure Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake says she is not a Politician and will not enter politics or support any Presidential candidate’ »

President Rajapaksa Addresses 2000 Top Professionals and Business Leaders at 4 Hotels Simultaneously inSouth Asia’s Largest Synchronised Forum

By Uditha Jayasinghe, Marisa Wikramanayake, Malik Gunatilleke and David Stephens

An upbeat President Mahinda Rajapaksa made his strongest overture yet to the private sector and professionals yesterday by pledging to tackle corruption and push ahead with ambitious development projects.

Attending what was billed as the largest synchronised forum in South Asia bringing together around 2,000 business leaders and top professionals, Rajapaksa’s affable promise won much applause.

“We won the war, we restored stability,” insisted the President,“I did not want to mix up my priorities. I believed the most important thing for this country was to end the war and that is what I dedicated my first term to.”

Continue reading ‘President Rajapaksa Addresses 2000 Top Professionals and Business Leaders at 4 Hotels Simultaneously inSouth Asia’s Largest Synchronised Forum’ »

People Should Reflect on the “Guttila Kavya” saying Charcoal will never Become white when Voting on Jan 8 th 2015

By

Savitri Goonesekere

Many people have described the Presidential elections 2015 as a “defining” event in the history of our country.

Savitri Goonesekere, Emeritus Professor of Law, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka and Member of the Advisory Committee, International Women's Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific  addresses during the 18th Session Human Rights Council. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré-Sept, 2011

Savitri Goonesekere, Emeritus Professor of Law, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka and Member of the Advisory Committee, International Women’s Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific addresses during the 18th Session Human Rights Council. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré-Sept, 2011

The unfolding scene also highlights the depths to which our national politics has sunk, and the complete blurring of the difference between what is acceptable and not acceptable behaviour on the part of those holding public office.

Certain incidents that would have elicited a negative public response have gone unnoticed or ignored in our country even in the mainstream print media.

Why are we all so unwilling to react when:

Continue reading ‘People Should Reflect on the “Guttila Kavya” saying Charcoal will never Become white when Voting on Jan 8 th 2015’ »

President Rajapaksa Alleges that Maithripala Sirisena has Signed a “Secret Deal” with the Tamil National Alliance


President Mahinda Rajapaksa today alleged that the opposition Presidential candidate Maithripala Sirisena has signed a secret deal with the Tamil National Alliance (TNA).

Speaking at an election rally in Chilaw, the President claimed that the secret deal was formulated by a team which includes TNA Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran.

Continue reading ‘President Rajapaksa Alleges that Maithripala Sirisena has Signed a “Secret Deal” with the Tamil National Alliance’ »

Lawyer Naganande Kodituwakku Files writ in Appeal Court Claiming President Rajapksa Cannot Contest for a Third Time Under the Law.

By Chitra Weerarathne

Attorney-at-Law Naganande Kodituwakku of Nawala filed a Writ Application in the Court of Appeal, claiming that the incumbent president could not contest for Presidency for a third time and that his candidacy had no validity in law.

Continue reading ‘Lawyer Naganande Kodituwakku Files writ in Appeal Court Claiming President Rajapksa Cannot Contest for a Third Time Under the Law.’ »

17 of 29 Local Councillors from Jathika Hela Urumaya Join Udaya Gammanpila in Supporting President Rajapaksa

BY

RUWAN LAKNATH JAYAKODY

The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) plunged yesterday into a deeper crisis when 17 of its 29 local government members defected to the UPFA to support President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the upcoming Presidential Election, former Senior Vice President of the party told a news conference in Colombo.

Western Provincial Councillor Udaya Gammanpila said that they would be unveiling the name of the new party and its leader soon. “Our party is founded on policies that are our foundation. We have suddenly strayed towards an alliance with the United National Party and Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and Former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga. There is a void in society for a Buddhist political party,” he added.

Continue reading ‘17 of 29 Local Councillors from Jathika Hela Urumaya Join Udaya Gammanpila in Supporting President Rajapaksa’ »

5 EPDP and 3 TNA Members Injured as “War”Erupts Between Both Parties at Jaffna District Development Coordinating Committee Meeting


By Ananth Palakidnar and Mirudhula Thambiah

The Jaffna District Development Coordinating Committee meeting yesterday turned into a battle field in the presence of Chief Minister C.V.Wignesawaran when Tamil National Alliance (TNA) members crossed the floor to attack EPDP leader and Minister Douglas Devananda.

Trouble sparked off when slain LTTE leader, Velupillai Prabakaran’s relative MK.Sivajilingam was on his feet arguing with Devananda. During the clash, five EPDP members and three TNA members were reportedly injured, reports from Jaffna said.

Unable to bring the situation under control, Chief Minister Wigneswaran walked out of the meeting as members attempted to hurl chairs at each other.

Continue reading ‘5 EPDP and 3 TNA Members Injured as “War”Erupts Between Both Parties at Jaffna District Development Coordinating Committee Meeting’ »

Mahinda Fears Chandrika will Destroy his Political Future and of his Kith and Kin if Maithripala wins.

By

Upul Joseph Fernando

“If Sirisena wins poll, President and his brothers may try to retain power by resorting to compliant Court or military…” – International Crisis GroupMahinda’s fears must be doubled and trebled in his march towards the Presidential Election. The reason is that Chandrika is behind Maithri. Mahinda having won the 2005 Presidential Election ousted Chandrika from the SLFP leadership on her birthday. Hence, Mahinda fears that Chandrika will not only destroy his political future but also of his kith and kin. That was why even international organizations predict that Mahinda will not give up power even if he is defeated

Last week it was revealed that Mahinda Rajapaksa had met the Bishops’ Conference and assured that he would step down gracefully if he was defeated at the 8 January Presidential Poll in view of the Pope’s visit. However, this assurance looked to have been given at a time the International Crisis Group report was released. The Bishops’ Conference stressed the need to have a peaceful atmosphere in the country for the Pope’s visit.

Continue reading ‘Mahinda Fears Chandrika will Destroy his Political Future and of his Kith and Kin if Maithripala wins.’ »

Maithripala Sirisena Challenges Mahinda Rajapaksa to a Public Debate on Democracy and Good Governance

By Dharisha Bastians in Divulapitiya

Common Opposition Candidate Maithripala Sirisena has challenged President Mahinda Rajapaksa to a debate on good governance and democracy.

Speaking at an election rally in Divulapitiya last night, Sirisena urged his former boss to debate him in a neutral setting, before a panel of independent judges.

“I will come to the debate without a single piece of paper in my hands. I will teach him about good governance and democracy. I will teach him how civilised leaders rule,” a fired up Sirisena charged.

Both candidates had to be ensured security at the chosen debate venue, he said.

Continue reading ‘Maithripala Sirisena Challenges Mahinda Rajapaksa to a Public Debate on Democracy and Good Governance’ »

“Even if we win, will they Allow our Candidate to be Declared the Winner?” Is the Question Facing Opposition Supporters in Sri Lanka.

By

Vishwamithra 1984

“Our great democracies still tend to think that a stupid man is more likely to be honest than a clever man, and our politicians take advantage of this prejudice by pretending to be even more stupid than nature made them.”
~ Bertrand Russell

The present Government and its coalition partners are held in so much suspicion and contempt, the obvious question that is being asked by every reasonable man and woman today is: “even if we win, will they allow our candidate to be declared the winner?”

It is a very reasonable question to ask and equally reasonable to prepare the voter, supporter and activist of the Opposition for the uphill task of upholding the law of the land to compel all officials, from the Election Department to the Police to be fair and balanced when dealing with the intricate process of balloting, counting and declaration of the winner- new President.

When undertaking any task, big or small, being ready has no substitute. Hoping for the best and preparing for the worst is a very reasonable demand from any new recruit. When talking about elections, what appears most significant in the process is, other than campaigning itself, actual voting (balloting) and counting. And when people refer to their suspicions and doubts, they are in fact referring to polling and counting.

Ever since Independence, almost all our elections, whether they were General, Presidential or By Elections, have been marred by rigging, some minor and others bordering on outright and unbelievably mass-scale frauds committed in broad daylight with regard to polling and by nightly maneuvers, especially initiated by the current regime.

Continue reading ‘“Even if we win, will they Allow our Candidate to be Declared the Winner?” Is the Question Facing Opposition Supporters in Sri Lanka.’ »

Catholic Bishops of Sri Lanka Confirm Visit of Pope Francis by “Getting Ready with Great Joy to Welcome the Holy Father”

We are eagerly awaiting the arrival of His Holiness Pope Francis on our soil on the 13th January 2015 as the Vicar of Christ and the Successor of Peter. It is with great joy that we welcome our Holy Father into our midst.

Already by the simplicity of his life, his sense of evangelical poverty and Christ-like compassionate love, specially for the poor and the suffering, the Holy Father has become a much revered and loved spiritual leader of the whole, world. The Pope’s visit therefore, is a great blessing not only to the Church in Sri Lanka but also to the whole Nation. All preparations are underway and are progressing smoothly to welcome the Holy Father.

Continue reading ‘Catholic Bishops of Sri Lanka Confirm Visit of Pope Francis by “Getting Ready with Great Joy to Welcome the Holy Father”’ »

Chandrika Kumaratunga Claims her Govt had Liberated 65% of the Land Under LTTE Control when she left office in 2005.

by
Zacki Jabbar

Former President Chandrika Kumaratunga yesterday lashed out at President Mahinda Rajapaksa saying that he was talking as if she had contributed nothing to the war against the LTTE.

Kumaratunga told a news conference at her residence in Colombo that when she left office in 2005 around sixty five percent of the territory under the control of the Tamil Tigers including Jaffna, which at that time was its nerve center had been captured.

“We drove the LTTE out of Jaffna in December 1995 about one year after I became president. By the time I left office in 2005, sixty five percent of the land extent under Prabhakaran’s control had been liberated,” she said, adding that the present government had cleared only the remaining 35 percent occupied by the Tamil Tigers.

Continue reading ‘Chandrika Kumaratunga Claims her Govt had Liberated 65% of the Land Under LTTE Control when she left office in 2005.’ »

Tamil Newspaper,TV Channel and Radio Station Named “Serendib”Launched in Sri Lanka to Focus Exclusively on the Muslim Community.

As the promoters of the pioneering venture National News Agency Ltd, declared that their effort would remain independent and apolitical, Sri Lanka’s first mass media outlet aimed at the country’s 1.9 Mn Muslim community was unveiled yesterday (16) in Colombo-and Muslim Media Forum, an influential Muslim community voice in Sri Lanka called the effort a ‘historic event.’ “This is indeed a historic occasion. We are totally apolitical, inclusive and not in any way divisive. From today, the voice of Lankan Muslims will extend to electronic and online methods as well”, Senior President’s Counsel Faiz Mustafa said in Colombo.

Mustafa was addressing the launch event of the non-profit National News Agency Ltd, the operator of Sri Lanka’s first mass media outlet exclusively focused on the country’s Muslim community. The National News Agency would operate the Tamil language Serendib TV Channel (the first ever TV channel to totally focus on Lankan Muslims), Tamil language daily newspaper ‘Serendib’ (the first ever daily Tamil newspaper for Lankan Muslims), and Serendib Radio Channel (the first ever radio channel for Lankan Muslims), all exclusively aimed at the Muslim community of Sri Lanka. Also present at the launch of Serendib TV, newspaper and Radio Channel at Kingsbury Hotel, Colombo were Basil Rajapaksa (Economic Development Minister), Rishad Bathiudeen (Minister of Industry and Commerce), Karu Jayasuriya (Member of Parliament), M Imtiaz (Chairman, National News Agency Ltd, operating firm of Serendib TV and media), Bin Saleh Al Dawood (Representative of World Muslim League), A. J. M. Muzammil (Mayor of Colombo), Faiz Mustafa (Senior President’s Counsel), Rauf Hakeem (Minister of Justice) as well as many members of the diplomatic community in Colombo.

Continue reading ‘Tamil Newspaper,TV Channel and Radio Station Named “Serendib”Launched in Sri Lanka to Focus Exclusively on the Muslim Community.’ »

Eight men and Two Women of Sri Lankan Origin Convicted by Berlin Criminal Court for Collecting Funds for LTTE in Germany.

By Suhada Walisinghe from Bonn, Germany

The Criminal Court in Berlin convicted two women and eight men of Sri Lankan origin, living in Berlin last Friday (12) of illegally collecting funds for the LTTE.

The duration of imprisonment ranged between six to eighteen months. The names of the accused and their prison terms are as follows:

Continue reading ‘Eight men and Two Women of Sri Lankan Origin Convicted by Berlin Criminal Court for Collecting Funds for LTTE in Germany.’ »

High-Stakes Battle with an invigorated opposition Challenging Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

By

Sudha Ramachandran

Mahinda Rajapaksa’s plans to return to power as Sri Lanka’s president for a third successive term has run into trouble. With less than a month to go before the vote, Rajapaksa is ahead of his rivals but joint opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena is closing in and could unseat him in a free and fair election.

Until recently, Sirisena was Health Minister in the Rajapaksa government and General-Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), the party Rajapaksa heads and which leads the ruling United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA). Sirisena’s defection from the government on November 21 to be named the joint opposition candidate took the government by surprise.

The opposition’s decision to pit Sirisena against the president is a political masterstroke. Both appeal to the same constituency – nationalists among the island’s ethnic majority, the Sinhalese-Buddhists.

Sirisena can “eat into the Sinhala-Buddhist vote, which is Rajapaksa’s main constituency as well as draw support from the SLFP,” Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu, executive director of the Colombo-based Centre for Policy Alternatives told The Diplomat.

Continue reading ‘High-Stakes Battle with an invigorated opposition Challenging Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa.’ »

TNA Parliamentarian Yogeswaran Tells Indian Media that both Candidates Mahinda Rajapaksa and Maithripala Sirisena are Anti-Tamil

Sri Lankan Tamil politician and Member of Parliament Seenithambi Yogeswaran has said the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), an amalgamation of Tamil parties, will announce by this month-end its stand on the January 8 presidential elections.

Talking to reporters on Saturday, Mr. Yogeswaran, who was here to attend a conference organised by the Hindu Makkal Katchi, said the TNA wanted to keep the cards close to its chest because it did not want its decision to influence the outcome of the elections.

He said that as both President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is seeking third term, and Maithripala Sirisena, the joint opposition candidate, were anti-Tamils, the TNA would take a stand after they released their manifestos.

Continue reading ‘TNA Parliamentarian Yogeswaran Tells Indian Media that both Candidates Mahinda Rajapaksa and Maithripala Sirisena are Anti-Tamil’ »

“I have all the Credentials to be President but I Cant Because I am an Ethnic Tamil”-DPF Leader Mano Ganesan

By

Chathushika Wijeyesinghe

The Democratic People’s Front had already announced its support for the common opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena at the January Presidential Election. In a wide ranging interview with the Dailymirror DPF leader Mano Ganesan claimed that the Tamils may not support President Mahinda Rajapaksa as he had failed to change the mindset of the majority community following the end of the war.

IMG_8915.JPG

Excerpts:

Q;As the leader of the Democratic People’s Front (DPF) what is your stance on the common candidate (CC)?


We are part of the campaign of the common candidate (CC). In fact we are the only Tamil party which is on stage with Maithripala Sirisena as at date.

We are discussing the CC in the aftermath of UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake crossing over to the UPFA.

Tissa is my friend. But I am disappointed. When my own brother crossed over I was very distressed. At that time, Tissa discussed of high values and ethics in politics to console me. I don’t understand why he did this to his party and that too at a crucial hour.

Maithri faced distress in the SLFP. But Tissa did not have any issues in the UNP. His issues were small. Some describe this as tit-to-tat. But I don’t think so. He is no match for Maithri. Tissa is more of an administrative official category and Maithri is a political leader. Therefore he is our common candidate today. He will restore democracy. We trust him.

As the leader of Democratic People’s Front, my contribution to his successful campaign is unique. We will directly muster nearly 200,000 Tamil votes in the Colombo, Gampaha, Kalutara and Kandy districts.

And we will influence another large number of Tamil votes in the Nuwara-Eliya, Badulla, Ratnapura and Kegalle districts. Colombo is my home. But I am not regional but national. I am heard in the north and east too.

Continue reading ‘“I have all the Credentials to be President but I Cant Because I am an Ethnic Tamil”-DPF Leader Mano Ganesan’ »

Vasudeva Nanayakkara the Only Living Candidate who Contested Sri Lanka’s First ever Presidential Election Talks about 1982.


BY

Shalika Wimalasena

Last surviving member of the first Presidential Election, Minister Vasudeva Nanayakkara told Ceylon Today that his Party forced him to contest that election although he did not want to do so.

Excerpts of the interview:

Q:
You are the only living candidate of Sri Lanka’s first presidential election. Tell us how you became the presidential candidate.

A: The Nava Sama Samaja Party (NSSP) decided to contest it. But I was undecided. The reason was, I was undecided about contesting against Hector Kobbekaduwa. But I bowed to the Party decision.

Continue reading ‘Vasudeva Nanayakkara the Only Living Candidate who Contested Sri Lanka’s First ever Presidential Election Talks about 1982.’ »

Can The Comparatively Less Known Sirisena Compete With Rajapaksa Hailed As a National Hero For Defeating LTTE And Eliminating Prabhakaran?

By Col R Hariharan

After President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his surprise challenger Maithripala Sirisena, General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), who quit his office as Minister, filed their nominations for the Presidential election on January 8, 2015 the contest has become exciting.

Maithripala’s move came as a boon to the opposition parties who were struggling to find a common strategy to stop the Rajapaksa juggernaut rolling for a third term in office. The opposition United National Party (UNP) and a few other SLFP leaders and Bandaranaike family loyalists led by former President Mrs Chandrika Kumaratunga quickly got together to name Sirisena (full name: Palle Watte Gamaralalage Maithreepala Yapa Sirisena) as the common opposition candidate of the National Democratic Front.

Undoubtedly, Sirisena’s “betrayal” has queered Rajapaksa’s calculated strategy to get elected for a third term as President. Ever since he got reelected as President in 2009 he made his move with an eye on a third term. First he gained two thirds majority the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) coalition in Parliament in the 2010 election.

He managed to get the constitution amended to lift the restriction on holding the office of the president for more than two terms. He also managed to enlarge the Executive President’s powers to appoint the head of judiciary and the election commissioner by getting the constitution amended.

While this was as planned, his popularity rapidly declined after the Rajapaksa family firmly ensconced itself in positions of power to control finances and dispense favours. The Party took a backseat, leading to widespread corruption, lawlessness and cronyism. Opposition and critical media were hounded and xenophobia nurtured. To cut down his losses the President advanced the presidential election by two years.

Continue reading ‘Can The Comparatively Less Known Sirisena Compete With Rajapaksa Hailed As a National Hero For Defeating LTTE And Eliminating Prabhakaran?’ »

Common Candidate Phenomenon is the Result of an Ethical Reflection on the part of Politically Conscious Buddhists.

by

Liyanage Amarakeerthi

phenomenon of Common Candidate resulted from a certain ethical reflection on the part of politically conscious Buddhists

The Common Candidate Maithripala Sirisena (MS) is not just a person. He is a symbol as well. Different people have different interpretations of this symbol. The supporters of the Rajapakasa regime are the poorest interpreters of this symbol. For them the Common Candidate is a conspirator supported by the West. As Gunadasa Amarasekara has put it, the Common Candidate is a conspiracy of the West whose handmaid is a group of Buddhist monks led by Rev. Maduluwawe Sobhita and Aturaliye Rathana.

The aim of the West is to destroy the nationality of Sinhala people. For these uncritical defenders of the regime Rev. Sobhita and Rathna are evil monks equal to the robe wearers who assassinated former prime minister SWRD Bandaranaike. All these conspiracy theories have now lost their power of persuasion partly because that line of thinking has become so one-dimensional that it captures none of the complexities and nuances.

The response to the Common Candidate by the ideological supporters of the current regime shows one thing important to note: They do not have any fresh ideas and they have fallen into a kind of ideological slumber after the ending of the war in 2009. They have failed to create a mode of thinking suitable for the post-war Sri Lanka. That failure itself is a major cause of creating the Common Candidate – a fact the regime is still to recognize.

After the conclusion of the war, the ideologues of the regime fell into an ethical slumber in addition to the intellectual one. That is why they failed to produce an internal critique of the unprecedented corruption and waste of public resources by the regime, specially the ruling family. For that reason, all the stories of corruption narrated by the Common Candidate Movement have become extremely appealing. In fact, they are stories of horror that can instantly make people hate the regime.

Continue reading ‘Common Candidate Phenomenon is the Result of an Ethical Reflection on the part of Politically Conscious Buddhists.’ »

Current Presidential Election is an Elitist “Game”Between the UPFA and Opposition in which the People have no Significant role to Play

By

Sumanasiri Liyanage

Lightning, thunder and heavy afternoon shower are very common in these days in Negombo. As my bus moved through Katunayake-Colombo highway that borders the Negombo lagoon, I see a reflection across the lagoon what is happening over the lagoon in the sky. It is scary, but beautiful. I browsed through my ipad for latest news in pre-election time.

What is happening in the Sri Lankan political landscape is scary and ugly. In the course of one month two main bourgeois parties, the UNP and the SLFP have lost their secretaries general. News of Opposition member crossing over to the government is followed by reports of crossovers from the government. This tit for tat politics shows either two parties are basically no different as far as respective policies are concerned or politicians have no real concerns over policies and ideologies they preach in public so that crossing over is not ideologically constrained.

Continue reading ‘Current Presidential Election is an Elitist “Game”Between the UPFA and Opposition in which the People have no Significant role to Play’ »

Mohan Peiris was the Wrong Man to Entrust with the Human Rights Action Plan.

By

Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.

Enemies of the President’s Promise 23

Sneezy 4

Mahinda Samarasinghe was appointed by Cabinet to chair an Inter-Ministerial Committee to implement the Human Rights Action Plan, and wanted me to serve on it as well as on a smaller Task Force that would push things forward. Nishan told me the Minister had wanted to appoint Mohan to chair the Task Force but I told him, and the Minister too, that I would only serve on the Task Force if I were in charge. I added to the Minister, without mentioning names, that I had had enough of being appointed to committees that never met.

The Minister did not commit himself, but at the first meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee he announced that he had asked me to convene a Task Force to take things forward. He did say that even though I could be difficult – a bloody nuisance, added Mohan, in a loud whisper – he knew I would get things done. It was obvious from this that they had discussed the matter and Mohan had not been pleased. But I was able to go ahead, and we managed to move swiftly with regard to many matters, with excellent cooperation from most Ministries.

I was wary about Mohan by this stage because of my experience with regard to the Inter-Ministerial Committee to implement the interim recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission. He had been appointed to chair this when the recommendations came out late in 2010, but there was no sign of any progress at the time the Darusman Committee issued its report in April 2011. I told the President this and, when he claimed that the Committee had made much progress, I said I thought it had never met.

Continue reading ‘Mohan Peiris was the Wrong Man to Entrust with the Human Rights Action Plan.’ »

Maithripala is Cinderella and Chandrika the Fairy Godmother but who is Prince Charming?


By

Sarath de Alwis

“A thing may be too sad to be believed or too wicked to be believed or too good to be believed; but it cannot be too absurd to be believed in this planet of frogs and elephants, of crocodiles and cuttlefish.” G.K. Chesterton.

This observation of the poet, philosopher and essayist of Victorian times captures the quintessence of the political debate of the past week. It was week that produced many “manipulative pieces of persuasive art.”

I begin by reiterating that the movement for a just society headed by the Venerable Maduluwawe Sobhitha Thero and the movement for a ‘Pivithuru Hetak’ (an ‘untainted dawn’) promoted by the ecclesiastical oratory of Athuraliye Rathana Thero form the dynamo that propels the Maithripala Sirisena movement.

Madam Chandrika had the pumpkin converted to a glass carriage with a few SLFP mice fleeing to become horses ready to gallop. Cinderella Maithripala made a single deviation from the fairytale script. Cinderella had a hopper before leaving the castle. Who is Prince Charming?

Continue reading ‘Maithripala is Cinderella and Chandrika the Fairy Godmother but who is Prince Charming?’ »

Maithripala Meetings Draw Large Crowds but Opposition Campaign is Unable to Address Village Level Voters so far.

By

Rasika Jayakody

Strategy meetings are taking place almost on a daily basis at the private residence of former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga on the progress of the political campaign of Maithripala Sirisena, the Common Candidate of the opposition.

At the strategy meetings, according to highly placed sources of the opposition, detailed PowerPoint presentation are being done with relevant statistics pertaining to the present campaign while analyzing its trajectory vis-à-vis the Presidential campaign in 2010- in which Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka was the common candidate.

The leaders of the Common Opposition and other key figures who attend these meetings are of the views that the Common Candidate of the opposition stands a strong chance to win the presidential election which is taking place early next year. They believe that the popularity level of Maithripala Sirisena is higher than that of Sarath Fonseka when he contested the presidential election in 2010.

Continue reading ‘Maithripala Meetings Draw Large Crowds but Opposition Campaign is Unable to Address Village Level Voters so far.’ »

Sri Lankan fans Wallow in Sentiment as Sanga and Mahela Play in their Final One day International on Home Turf.

By

Shehan Daniel

Sentiment will replace significance as the country prepares to bid farewell to two of its most prolific and iconic cricketers who will be playing their final limited-over games at home when Sri Lanka take on England in the final One Day International of the seven-match series at the R Premadasa Stadium today.

For much of their careers, Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene have shadowed each other, one outdoing the other only for the other to pull one back, and in similar fashion, days after Sangakkara played his final limited overs game at ‘home’ in Kandy, Jayawardene will do the same in Colombo.

Jayawardene, who has already retired from two out of the three formats this year, has hinted that he will call it quits from 50-over cricket at the end of next year’s World Cup, with Sangakkara stating he will do the same, though he may possibly prolong his Test retirement.

Continue reading ‘Sri Lankan fans Wallow in Sentiment as Sanga and Mahela Play in their Final One day International on Home Turf.’ »

Maithripala and Ranil will Address “Let’s Unite”Business Forum Re-scheduled for December 23rd at Cinnamon Lakeside.

The much-anticipated business forum to be addressed by the common candidate Maithripala Sirisena and UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe has been rescheduled for 23 December at 10:30 a.m. at the Cinnamon Lakeside Colombo.

It was previously planned for 17 December at TajSamudra Hotel.

The duo will address the business community in this interactive forum titled ‘Let’s Unite,’ with a special theme of ‘Boosting Growth in a Stable Policy Environment’.

Continue reading ‘Maithripala and Ranil will Address “Let’s Unite”Business Forum Re-scheduled for December 23rd at Cinnamon Lakeside.’ »

The Political Immorality of Eleventh Hour Crossovers

By

Malinda Seneviratne

‘We are not in the business of issuing character certificates to those who cross,’ JVP Leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake said. The past few weeks have seen a lot of politicians crossing party lines. These moves have been received with jeers and cheers, depending on whether the person left or arrived, respectively. Interestingly, if you took names of the ‘movers’ and the names of those who either praised or vilified the move out, it would be as though people are using the same script.

If rhetoric and self-righteous chest beating is all that these crossovers are about, it would be silly to take them too seriously. They do matter, however. They keep contenders and campaigns in the news. They are used to portray ‘sway’ even if they don’t exactly translate into the numbers that movers and backers toss around. On the other hand if people do get swayed by those who are up for sale what does it say about the voter? Not much, unfortunately.

Continue reading ‘The Political Immorality of Eleventh Hour Crossovers’ »

Let us act decisively in the name of generations to come: declaration by university academics on #PresPollSL

Let us act decisively in the name of generations to come: declaration by university academics on the 2015 Presidential election

The presidential election has been announced and each of us will be called upon to exercise our vote as citizens of this country on the 8th of January 2015. It is our considered view that our country is at a historically important juncture at this moment and our decision at this election will have crucial implications for future generations.
Continue reading ‘Let us act decisively in the name of generations to come: declaration by university academics on #PresPollSL’ »

Kandyan King of Sri Lanka Cricket – Kumar Sangakkara – Lays Down Crown in Grand Style with Unbeaten century.

By

Alan Gardner in Pallekele

“Sanga! Sanga! Sanga!”

pic via: twitter.com/KumarSanga2

pic via: twitter.com/KumarSanga2

The chanting began as Kumar Sangakkara moved into the 90s. Between the end of the 30th over and the start of the 41st, Sangakkara had faced just 15 deliveries for 15 runs, and the crowd was becoming impatient. But for one chance, spurned by England, Sangakkara had batted imperiously. His subjects had come to see a coronation and Sangakkara was not about to disappoint.

“Sanga! Sanga! Sanga!”

The noise echoed up into the sky as the sun began to set behind the hills. Sangakkara, the Man of the Match, was talking to the media but the throng remained outside the building, jostling for a glimpse. He came down to greet them, smiling, arms open. Moments later, he was being ushered back inside by lackeys and soldiers, fearful he would be mobbed. Sanga love can be hard to control.

Continue reading ‘Kandyan King of Sri Lanka Cricket – Kumar Sangakkara – Lays Down Crown in Grand Style with Unbeaten century.’ »

Astrologer Sumanadasa Abeygunawardena Predicts Victory for President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Jan 8th Election.

Astrologer Sumanadasa Abegunawardhana predicts that President Mahinda Rajapaksa will emerge as a winner at the next Presidential Election on 8 January.

Excerpts of this interview are given below:

President Mahinda Rajapaksa & Astrologer Sumanadasa Abeygunawardena

President Mahinda Rajapaksa & Astrologer Sumanadasa Abeygunawardena

Q:
What is your astrological view on the date, 8 January, the Presidential Election is held?

A: I see it as lucky for the President Mahinda Rajapaksa. There is only a brief period for the presidential Election.

Q:
What do you mean by luck?

Continue reading ‘Astrologer Sumanadasa Abeygunawardena Predicts Victory for President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Jan 8th Election.’ »

“I am not Afraid. I am not a Person who Changes Decisons…… I am Prepared to face Mudslinging” -Hirunika Premachandra.


BY

DILANKA GUNATHILAKA

pic via: facebook.com/hirunika.e.premachandra (Oct-2014)

pic via: facebook.com/hirunika.e.premachandra (Oct-2014)

Provincial Councillor Hirunika Premachandra said that the citizens of this country deserve a free, fair and just society and therefore she has decided to lend her support to the Common Candidate Maithripala Sirisena to achieve it.

Excerpts of that interview:

Q:
You won the first place in the Western Provincial Council election contesting on the UPFA. So why did you decide to quit the UPFA?

A: My father and the other fathers alike, who were brutally killed, have up-to-date, not been afforded even basic justice. The people of the country need a free and fair society. I support the common candidate Maithripala Sirisena based on these two objectives.

Continue reading ‘“I am not Afraid. I am not a Person who Changes Decisons…… I am Prepared to face Mudslinging” -Hirunika Premachandra.’ »

“String of Pearls” Theory of US must be Viewed with Suspicion as USA can Set up Chna against India in the Region warns former UN diplomat Jayantha Dhanapala

By

Meera Srinivasan

Jayantha Dhanapala-pic courtesy of: Elliott School of International Affairs

Jayantha Dhanapala-pic courtesy of: Elliott School of International Affairs

India should have an open mind about Chinese projects in Sri Lanka unless the island was seen conferring special favours on China, which is yet not the case, former diplomat Jayantha Dhanapala said.

Mr. Dhanapala, widely acclaimed as a top diplomat who played a key role in Sri Lanka’s foreign policy engagement during the war, spoke to The Hindu recently, and shared his views on a host of issues including Sri Lanka’s relationship with India and China, political developments such as the January 8 presidential polls and the ongoing campaign in Sri Lanka seeking abolition of executive presidency.

On India voicing concern over an apparently growing Chinese presence in Sri Lanka, Mr. Dhanapala — who has held key posts in Beijing, Washington and Geneva — said: “Little Sri Lanka, when it wanted to develop its economy, offered a project of the Hambantota harbour to India who decided for very good economic reasons not to accept it, and so they went to China. Now if you can show me any economic project which has conferred special favours on China, which it has not conferred on other countries let alone India, then I would concede there is a tilt towards China. But that is not yet the case,” he said.

Continue reading ‘“String of Pearls” Theory of US must be Viewed with Suspicion as USA can Set up Chna against India in the Region warns former UN diplomat Jayantha Dhanapala’ »

“Chandrika, Malik, Ravi and Mangala are in a Plot to Liquidize the UNP”- Health Minister Tissa Attanayake

by

Anuradha Samuwel

pic : facebook.com/amtattanayake

pic : facebook.com/amtattanayake

Health Minister Tissa Attanayake says that the most dangerous thing in the UNP was the Party was under various cliques and decisions regarding the Presidential Election were not taken by the Party Working Committee or Advisory Committee of the G-20 group appointed to handle the Presidential election.

Excerpts:

Q:
Why did you quit the UNP and join the government?

A: I have rendered a yeoman service to the UNP as General Secretary. I remained in the party in the midst of defeats and safeguarded the party. But some incidents and the decisions of the UNP in the recent past did not satisfy me.

Continue reading ‘“Chandrika, Malik, Ravi and Mangala are in a Plot to Liquidize the UNP”- Health Minister Tissa Attanayake’ »

“Maithripala is a Good man but is now a Prisoner of ‘Bandit Queen’ Chandrika and Anti-Democratic Ranil” -Udaya Gammanpila

BY

CASSENDRA DOOLE

Udaya Gammanpila

Udaya Gammanpila

Former Deputy Secretary of the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), Udaya Gammanpila, says that the JHU decided to join hands with anti-nationalist forces such as Chandrika, Ranil Wickremesinghe, Wickramabahu Karunaratne and Mano Ganeshan. As a result he left the Common Opposition since he could not work with such elements according to his conscience.

Excerpts:

Q:
Why did you leave your party and join the government?

Continue reading ‘“Maithripala is a Good man but is now a Prisoner of ‘Bandit Queen’ Chandrika and Anti-Democratic Ranil” -Udaya Gammanpila’ »

“If Former Terrorists Can Engage in Politics why Cant I use Ex-Military Services Personnel for Election Campaign”? asks Gotabhaya Rajapaksa

By

Shamindra Ferdinando

GR080213

Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa yesterday said that those who had accused him of using retired military personnel in President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s campaign had conveniently forgotten Sarath Fonseka entering politics while still holding office as Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). Fonseka held the rank of General at that time.

Defence Secretary said that President Rajapaksa had promptly accepted the former army commander’s letter of resignation when the latter declared his intention to contest the 2010 presidential election.

The Defence Secretary was responding to Opposition allegation that he was using retired service personnel in President Rajapaksa’s campaign.

Continue reading ‘“If Former Terrorists Can Engage in Politics why Cant I use Ex-Military Services Personnel for Election Campaign”? asks Gotabhaya Rajapaksa’ »

Blatant Discrimination Against “Tamil” by Media Despite Leftists like Vasudeva, DEW, Tissa Vitarana and Rajah Collure Being Present.

by

Tissa De Silva

I was a keen observer who participated at the May Day rally and meeting at Nugegoda.

The meeting was graced by Ministers Tissa Vitharana, D. E. W, Gunesekera, and Vasudeva Nanayakara and CP Secretary Raja Collure. All of them talked of equal rights to all people of all backgrounds and vocally supported the 13th Amendment. They were all for a Sri Lanka with no Class system.

But when the last speaker who was the only speaker in Tamil took the floor,I noticed in disgust that the media present, who were given a special space together with the Ministers on the podium, removing the microphones etc from the Tamil speaker’s table.

A few seconds before Vasudeva Nanayakkara Minister for Social Integration and Tri-Lingual policy of the government was boasting about the work he had done in these field. But He too failed to stop the action of the media, in downright insult to the Tamil Language.

Continue reading ‘Blatant Discrimination Against “Tamil” by Media Despite Leftists like Vasudeva, DEW, Tissa Vitarana and Rajah Collure Being Present.’ »

Hirunika Premachandra who Fled Sri Lanka with her Mother in fear of her life has now returned Discloses Dr.Rajitha Senaratne


Kalutara District Parliamentarian Rajitha Senaratne has stated that Hirunika Premachandra is back in the country.

pic via: facebook.com/hirunika.e.premachandra

pic via: facebook.com/hirunika.e.premachandra

Speaking to BBC Sandeshaya, Senaratne has said that the Western Provincial Council Member who left the country over threats to her life has returned to the island and that she will take part in the election campaign for the common candidate of the opposition.
Continue reading ‘Hirunika Premachandra who Fled Sri Lanka with her Mother in fear of her life has now returned Discloses Dr.Rajitha Senaratne’ »

Punishing Mahinda for Succeeding in War Against LTTE while Rewarding Ranil and Chandrika for Failing.


BY DR DAYAN JAYATILLEKA

Sri Lanka appears to face an easy choice: continuity or change; stay where we are and the way we are or turn a new page. That, however, is an illusion.

RW CBK MR MS DJ

The truth is that Sri Lanka faces two ghastly choices: death by continuity and stagnation or death by uncontrollable radical reform; death by claustrophobic, even suffocating centralization or death by centrifugal downward spiral.

The uncritical supporters of the Rajapaksa status quo do not see the first danger. They see a linear progression in material modernization, which either does not require an accompanying political, educational and cultural modernization or they assume that modernization of the material base will inevitably, inexorably bring the other desired modernizations in their wake.

The uncritical supporters of the Combined Opposition see no benefit from the material modernization. For them it is all a sham and a financial shakedown. For this school of thought, any kind of change is better than none, and this upcoming Presidential election is the last chance for democratic change possibly in our lifetime, so any risk is worth taking.

Continue reading ‘Punishing Mahinda for Succeeding in War Against LTTE while Rewarding Ranil and Chandrika for Failing.’ »

Terrible Travesty of Justice! Vairavanathan Arrested in 1990 Kept Under Detention in Hambantota for 25 years Without anyone Knowing.


A resident from Chunnakam in Jaffna returned home on Friday after more than 25 years in a detention camp, residents said.

HC

S. Vairavanathan was arrested at Armour Street in Colombo soon after a bomb blast in 1990. He was 28 then.
Continue reading ‘Terrible Travesty of Justice! Vairavanathan Arrested in 1990 Kept Under Detention in Hambantota for 25 years Without anyone Knowing.’ »

Hirunika Premachandra with her Mother Sumana Flees Sri Lanka due to Threats to Life after her Defection from Govt.

By

Indika Sri Aravinda

Hirunika Premanchandra and her mother, a former advisor to the President, Sumana Premachandra have fled the country following threats to their lives, a coordinating secretary of Premanchandra said.

The security of Hirunika Premanchandra had been withdrawn after she declared that she will back the common opposition presidential candidate Maithripala Sirisena.

In addition, her mother’s position as Presidential advisor had also been cancelled.

Speaking to The Sunday Leader just before she went into hiding, Hirunika had said that there was an attempt to take over her house in the Ministerial Housing Scheme at Jawatha where she and her mother reside.

Continue reading ‘Hirunika Premachandra with her Mother Sumana Flees Sri Lanka due to Threats to Life after her Defection from Govt.’ »

If Sirisena was made Prime Minister and Ministry of Power and Energy not Taken Away from Ranawaka both would not have Defected from UPFA Govt.

By

C.A.Chandraprema

One of the events that enlivened the political scene last week was the split in the JHU with Udaya Gammanpila breaking ranks with his party and going back into the government. This sudden development which obviously has come as a surprise to the JHU shows the ferment within that party over the decision to break away from the UPFA. There is no doubt at all that the party that is closest to the ideology that the JHU represents is the UPFA.

The reasons that caused the JHU to break away from the UPFA are basically the same as the cause for Maithripala Sirisena to break away from the SLFP. Had Sirisena been given the premiership, he would not have broken away. Likewise, if Champika Ranawaka had not been removed from the power and energy ministry, he too would not have broken away from the UPFA.

In both these instances, the reasons for breaking away were really personal and had nothing to do with matters of policy or ideology. This is of course not to say that everything was just hunky dory within the UPFA coalition. Some ministers have hardly any power or responsibilities. At times the heads of the institutions under them have been appointed not by them but by ‘higher authorities’.

Continue reading ‘If Sirisena was made Prime Minister and Ministry of Power and Energy not Taken Away from Ranawaka both would not have Defected from UPFA Govt.’ »

Armed Gangs in Defenders Prowl in the Night in Kolonnawa Electorate but Duminda Silva MP Denies there is “State of terror”.

Western Provincial Councillor Hirunika Premachandra and Mother Sumana Fly to Singapore Citing Security reasons

********************************************

UPFA Parliamentarian and party organizer for Kolonnawa Duminda Silva scoffed at claims made by supporters of Maithripala Sirisena to the effect that ‘terror stalks the electorate’. He was responding to allegations made by recent defector to the Opposition camp and former Chairman, Kotkawatte-Mulleriyawa Pradeshiya Sabha Prasanna Solangaarachchi.

Prasanna Solangaarachchi told reporters in Colombo a few days ago that armed groups were roaming Kotikawatte and Mulleriyawa areas every night in Defenders and the lives of opposition’s activists are under threat. Sollangaarachchi is known to be a staunch supporter of Hirunika Premachandra’s father, the late Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra.

With Western Provincial Councilor Hirunika Premachandra leaving the country citing “security reasons” and Solangaarachchi claiming there is a plot to assassinate him, the Opposition alleges there is a state of “terror” in Kolonnawa – which is unleashed by ruling party politicians.

Continue reading ‘Armed Gangs in Defenders Prowl in the Night in Kolonnawa Electorate but Duminda Silva MP Denies there is “State of terror”.’ »

All 19 Presidential Candidates Including Mahinda and Maithri Reveal their Assets but Elections Commissioner Conceals them from Public Scrutiny

By
Namini Wijedasa

Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya has blocked public access to the asset declarations of all presidential candidates till after the January 2015 election.

“The public can request for them after the elections,” the Elections Commissioner told the Sunday Times yesterday. “We are not letting anyone see them till then.” Legal experts said his decision was an administrative move that did not have any basis in law.

All 19 candidates –including President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the New Democratic Front’s Maithripala Sirisena — have filed their declarations of assets and liabilities with the Elections Department, Mr. Deshapriya said.

Continue reading ‘All 19 Presidential Candidates Including Mahinda and Maithri Reveal their Assets but Elections Commissioner Conceals them from Public Scrutiny’ »

Comrade Bahu Objects to Mahinda being Nominated Because his names Percy and Mahendra Symbolise Western Imperialism and Indian Power

What’s in a name? It’s not about a rose, but about Western imperialism in President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s name that was cited as the reason for the objection against his nomination for the January 8 presidential poll.

Dr. Vickramabahu Karunaratne

Dr. Vickramabahu Karunaratne

If President Rajapaksa’s name reflected Western imperialism, the objection against the nomination of common opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena said he was mentally unfit.

These were the two objections when nominations were received on Monday at the Elections Department in Rajagiriya.
Continue reading ‘Comrade Bahu Objects to Mahinda being Nominated Because his names Percy and Mahendra Symbolise Western Imperialism and Indian Power’ »

The Personal Turning Point in the Political Transformation of Tissa Attanayake


The ‘star of the week’, the United National Party’s former General Secretary Tissa Attanayake was on board the SriLankan Airlines airbus A 330 with President Mahinda Rajapaksa, wife Shiranthi and son Yoshita when it rolled out from the runway of the Bandaranaike International Airport last Tuesday afternoon.

For Attanayake, who had been an Opposition politician until much less than 24 hours earlier, it was a signal honour. There are more than a 100 ministers and deputies in the Rajapaksa Cabinet and even MPs who are yet to be included in his official entourages for travel abroad. By simply switching loyalty, he propelled himself to the top rungs of the UPFA and found a place in the presidential entourage and the cabinet of ministers later.

Though he did not have an electoral base and is on THE UNP’s National List, UPFA members argued they have lost a General Secretary (Maithripala Sirisena, SLFP) and gained one – a quid pro quo of sorts. Thus, Attanayake appeared buoyant that he was accompanying Rajapaksa for religious ceremonies at Tirumala Venkateshwara Temple in Tirupathi, some 138 kilometres from Chennai but located in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

The presiding deity of the temple is Lord Venkateswara, an incarnation of lord Vishnu. Venkateswara is known by other names: Balaji, Govinda, and Srinivasa. The temple lies on the southern banks of Sri Swami Pushkarini, a holy water tank. The temple complex comprises a traditional temple building, with a number of modern queue and pilgrim lodging sites. The special flight landed 75 minutes later in Cochin from where Rajapaksa and family were flown by helicopter to a hotel in the town area. Others went by road.

Continue reading ‘The Personal Turning Point in the Political Transformation of Tissa Attanayake’ »

Up Country Tamil MP’s Digambaram,Radhakrishnan and Perumal Rajadurai Cross Over but Arumugam Thondaman Remains with Govt

By

C.A.Chandraprema

The biggest boost that the joint opposition got last week was the defection of P.Digambaram and (to a much lesser extent) V. Radhakrishnan from the government. There may not be an actual shift of votes in the Nuwara Eliya district because of these defections as Digambaram was elected on the UNP list in any case. As for Radhakrishnan, he was elected to parliament as a member of the CWC at the parliamentary election in 2010 and within a few months he fell out with Thondaman because he was not given a deputy minister’s post. Later he joined the Up-Country People’s Front.

So even though Radhakrishnan is now a leading figure of the Up-Country People’s Front, his moving out may not necessarily mean that the CWC will lose a chunk of its votes since what he had was only one preference in the CWC block vote. As for the Up-Country People’s Front which Radhakrishnan subsequently joined, they do not have an elected representative in this parliament, but they did have a fairly strong base in the Nuwara Eliya district until recently.

The Up-Country People’s Front contested independently in the Nuwara Eliya district in 1994 and 2004 and won one seat on both occasions. They got 23,400 votes in 1994 and 49,700 votes in 2004 which gives us a rough idea of their strength in the district. This however may not mean that the Up-Country People’s Front will have 49,000 votes to take away from the UPFA list. The reason why they got a high of 49,700 votes contesting separately in 2004 could be because of the erosion of support for the unsuccessful UNP government that took office in December 2001.

The CWC contested the 2004 parliamentary election on the UNP ticket and therefore the Tamil vote disappointed with the CWC and the UNP may have gone to the Up-Country People’s Front. The last time the strength of the UCPF was tested was at the Central Provincial Council election in 2013 when they got 23,455 votes in the Nuwara Eliya district (contesting separately) and won one seat. So one may assume that this represents their block vote in the district.

Continue reading ‘Up Country Tamil MP’s Digambaram,Radhakrishnan and Perumal Rajadurai Cross Over but Arumugam Thondaman Remains with Govt’ »

Super Star of Tamil Cinema, Rajnikanth Celebrates 64th Birthday by Releasing his Latest Action Thriller Movie “Lingaa”

Tamil superstar Rajinikanth on Friday turned 64 and made the occasion a memorable one by dishing out his latest flick Lingaa to frenzied fans who turned up to witness their matinee idol deliver famous punchlines after about four years.

pic: facebook.com/LingaaTheMovie

pic: facebook.com/LingaaTheMovie

The actor was out of town, his publicist said without divulging details.

However, it was Lingaa all the way as the hit combination of Rajinikanth-K.S. Ravikumar joined once again in what is expected to be a treat for the star’s avid fans.
Continue reading ‘Super Star of Tamil Cinema, Rajnikanth Celebrates 64th Birthday by Releasing his Latest Action Thriller Movie “Lingaa”’ »

“If Mahinda Rajapaksa is Defeated which I Hope will happen, I Think the Party will Rally Around Maithripala Sirisena”- Rajiva Wijesinha

By

C.A.Chandraprema

Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.

Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.

If Mahinda Rajapaksa is defeated which I hope will happen, I think the party will rally around Maithreepala Sirisena

University don turned parliamentarian Rajiva Wijesinha was in the news recently for having crossed over from the government to the opposition and for having appeared on Al Jazeera with the head of the Global Tamil Forum Suren Surenthiran where he made some utterances that have been given various interpretations. In this interview, he speaks to C. A. Chandraprema about his Al Jazeera interview, and his support for Maithripala Sirisena.

Q. You seem to have ruffled feathers in Colombo with your interview on Al Jazeera. I have heard you (and many other people) saying much worse things about the Rajapaksas. It would appear that the reason for people to be upset about what you said would be that you seemed to be telling Surenthiran that what he was saying (about Rajapaksa being taken to the International Criminal Court like Charles Taylor or Milosevic after he loses the election) was ‘precisely the kind of nonsense that will lead to an undesirable result at this election’. You also said that the GTF should have the sense not to try to interfere in this election ‘because they will pervert it’. That may have been interpreted as your telling Surenthiran not to say such things because his statements will skew the election result in favour of the government and defeat the ‘common goal’.

A. I said that in direct contradiction to what Suren Srenthiran was saying. When I said that I believe the army fought a very good war both Surenthiran and the lady doing the interview started shouting at me to which I responded by saying that ‘I am not concerned about the prejudices of the international community’. I also said that at the rate the government is going our forces will suffer if Mahinda Rajapaksa is re-elected because Mahinda Rajapksa’s foreign minister has utterly betrayed the record of our forces. No answers have been made to the allegations made against us, there have been blanket denials, and there has been no analysis to show that the allegations made are false. Only I have done that. Mahinda Rajapaksa says that I nodded my head to what Suren Surentiran said about taking him to the Hague after the election. But I have said very clearly that there is absolutely no case (against Sri Lanka).

Continue reading ‘“If Mahinda Rajapaksa is Defeated which I Hope will happen, I Think the Party will Rally Around Maithripala Sirisena”- Rajiva Wijesinha’ »

Crossover of Tissa Attanayake is of Considerable Importance in the Current Politics of Sri Lanka and a “Bombshell” to the UNP.

by

Lucien Rajakarunanayake

History was made last Monday, with the acceptance of the nomination of Mahinda Rajapaksa to seek the mandate of the people for a third term as Executive President; the first Sri Lankan to seek a third term in this office.

Nomination Day is always one with much thrills and excitement for the politicians involved, their parties and supporters, and the public. It is especially so for the leading candidates in the fray. Yet, the major thrill of the day was easily gained by the current national president and UPFA candidate, Mahinda Rajapaksa, by welcoming Tissa Attanayake, the General Secretary of the United National Party, the main party in the alliance that opposes him, into the folds of the UPFA.

It was a crossover of considerable importance in the current politics of Sri Lanka, not merely a tit-for-tat for the departure of the SLFP’s General Secretary to be the “common candidate” against him, whose commonality remains in question; but one of much wider impact, for the campaign of the UPFA and Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Continue reading ‘Crossover of Tissa Attanayake is of Considerable Importance in the Current Politics of Sri Lanka and a “Bombshell” to the UNP.’ »

Maithripala did not show any “Maithree” or Compassion Towards Animals when he ordered the killing and Incarceration of Hundreds of Dogs.

By

C. Fernando

One of the biggest assets that is being brandished about by the Common Candidate is his “Maithree” i.e., Compassion.

The Common Candidate also claims proudly that he follows Mahatma Gandhi’s principles on “Avihinsa” (non-violence towards all living beings).

I would like all Animal Lovers and Compassionate People in this “Dharma Dveepa” to note that it is this very same Common Candidate who, in January 2012, gave the orders over and above President’s unique No-Kill Policy on Dogs which was declared in June 2006, to resume killing dogs.

Mercifully, his murderous plan was halted by the President.

Continue reading ‘Maithripala did not show any “Maithree” or Compassion Towards Animals when he ordered the killing and Incarceration of Hundreds of Dogs.’ »

Millions of Cut-outs and Posters of the President Being Exhibited have Become a Problem, a Nuisance and a Headache.

By

Somapala Gunadheera

Millions of cut-outs and posters of the President, exhibited all over the island, have become a problem, a nuisance and a headache not only for him but also for many others. In fact, no advantage has accrued to the President from their exhibition. Not even a baby in this country needs the help of a poster to identify him.

Although his opponent might have a better use of them, he has astutely refrained from putting out a poster. He has thus nullified an investment costing crores of rupees made on his adversary, and turned it into to his own advantage.

Everyone knows that it is a violation of the law to exhibit propaganda material during the pendency of an election. In that background a contestant who abuses the atmosphere with his propaganda material, while his opponent remains idle, suffers a damage to his vote base at the very beginning of the contest.

Continue reading ‘Millions of Cut-outs and Posters of the President Being Exhibited have Become a Problem, a Nuisance and a Headache.’ »

Udaya Gammanpila Reveals Truth about Jathika Hela Urumaya Never Endorsing the 17th Amendment to the Constitution.

by Shamindra Ferdinando

Western Provincial Council member Udaya Gammanpila yesterday returned to the UPFA’s fold to back President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s re-election bid, after resigning as the JHU’s Deputy General Secretary. He warned that in the event of Maithripala Sirisena securing the presidency the country would be plunged into an unprecedented crisis.

Gammanpila said he had been left with no option but to quit the JHU as his priority was to safeguard Sri Lanka’s interests. Commenting on opposition presidential candidate Sirisena having separate electoral pacts with the UNP-led Opposition and the JHU, Gammanpila pointed out the serious discrepancies in the two agreements.

Gammanpila, addressed the media at SLFP headquarters at T. B. Jayah Mawatha.

The JHU rebel said that he didn’t want to contribute in any way to a project which was inimical to the national interest.

Continue reading ‘Udaya Gammanpila Reveals Truth about Jathika Hela Urumaya Never Endorsing the 17th Amendment to the Constitution.’ »

Investment Promotion Deputy Minister Faizer Musthapha Threatens to Quit Govt if Bodu Bala Sena Backs it Directly or Indirectly.

By
Maheesha Mudugamuwa

Investment Promotion Deputy Minister Faizer Musthapha yesterday told the media that if the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) backed the government either directly or indirectly, he would not remain in it because the interests of his community had to be safeguarded first of all.

He was speaking at a media briefing at the SLFP headquarters yesterday.

Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) General Secretary and Petroleum Industries Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said the government had not offered money to induce or prevent crossovers.

Continue reading ‘Investment Promotion Deputy Minister Faizer Musthapha Threatens to Quit Govt if Bodu Bala Sena Backs it Directly or Indirectly.’ »

Source of Sri Lankan Tragedy is that the will of the Majority has Always been the will of the Sinhalese Ethnic Majority.

by

Izeth Hussain

A plague on both your houses

– Shakespeare

There is much glib talk nowadays about the formation of a national Government after the January elections. It is based on the facile assumption that the coming together of the two major parties, the UNP and the SLFP, together with some minority ethnic parties, would amount to a national Government. But most Tamils don’t accept either of our two major parties as national parties: they see them rather as Sinhalese ethnic parties in all but name. As for the Muslims, they don’t unequivocally accept them as national parties either.

The late Mr.Ashraff, the founder of the most important Muslim Party, the SLMC, established its rationale on the ground that all Sri Lankan political parties are in reality ethnic parties. The SLMC could conceivably join a supposed national Government but that would not be because it has swallowed the rhetoric about a national Government. It would really be an instrumental tactic arising out of the fact that the most effective way of securing the legitimate interests of the Muslims is by joining the Government of the day. As for the TNA, joining a national Government seems most unlikely.

Therefore a supposed national Government will really be a Government in which power is decisively exercised by the two major Sinhalese ethnic parties, the UNP and the SLFP. Can such a Government be properly described as a national Government? One problem is that our minorities constitute not a minuscule but a very substantial proportion of the Sri Lankan population. Depending on whether or not the Sinhalese Catholics and other Christians are included in the category “Sinhalese” – there are Sinhalese Buddhists who would not agree with that categorization – the supposed national Government will represent no more that 70% to 75% of the Sri Lankan population. A Government in which one ethnic group, the Sinhalese, is dominant and does not allow a real sharing of power by a quarter or more of the people cannot be called “national”.

Continue reading ‘Source of Sri Lankan Tragedy is that the will of the Majority has Always been the will of the Sinhalese Ethnic Majority.’ »

Rise of the Ruhunu Rajapaksas and Medamulana Mahinda’s Journey to President’s House.

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Percy Mahendra Rajapaksa, known to his country and the world at large as Mahinda Rajapaksa, celebrated his 69th birthday on 18th November. Sri Lanka’s fifth Executive President has been at the helm of the nation for nine years since November 2005. Currently he is poised to create a record of sorts by contesting presidential elections for the third time. Whether he wins or loses History would be made.

7th Deyata Kirula Exhibition, Ampara-Mar 24, 2013-pic via: facebook.com/NamalSL

7th Deyata Kirula Exhibition, Ampara-Mar 24, 2013-pic via: facebook.com/NamalSL

Once the presidential poll is in progress the media spotlight will beam on this son of the Ruhunu even more powerfully than the past in the days to come. It is perhaps a sign of the times that the Editor of the Daily FT has asked me to write a personality piece about President Mahinda Rajapaksa at this juncture.

කතරගම මහා දේවාලයේ | கதிர்காமம் இந்துக் கோவில் | Kataragama Hindu Temple - pic via: facebook.com/PresidentRajapaksa

කතරගම මහා දේවාලයේ | கதிர்காமம் இந்துக் கோவில் | Kataragama Hindu Temple – December 3, 2014-pic via: facebook.com/PresidentRajapaksa

Delving deep into research about the man from Medamulana and his colourful background is both an interesting and fascinating task. There is no doubt that Mahinda Rajapaksa the politician is demonised by his opponents and deified by his supporters. On the other hand there is no denying that the metamorphosis of Mahinda from a mischievous boy into becoming the responsible Head of State is a tale worthy of narration. In that context the Daily FT Editor’s request provides an opportunity to shift focus from the current politics of the President to that of his personal story and family history.

Continue reading ‘Rise of the Ruhunu Rajapaksas and Medamulana Mahinda’s Journey to President’s House.’ »

Tale of Two Crossovers by Rajarata Stalwarts: CP de Silva in 1964 and Maithripala Sirisena in 2014.

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The controversial cross over of Senior minister Pallewatte Gamaralalage Maithripala Yapa Sirisena from the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) Government headed by Mahinda Rajapaksa to the opposition and related developments have evoked memories of another cross over from treasury benches to the opposite side by another senior minister from the Rajarata 50 years ago.

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It was on December 3rd 1964 that Charles Percival de Silva the minister of Land, Irrigation and Power in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Government of Sirima Bandaranaike dramatically crossed over to the opposition with a group of MP’s. The CP de Silva crossover as the event was generally described resulted in the Sirima Bandaranaike Govt being defeated in Parliament.
Continue reading ‘Tale of Two Crossovers by Rajarata Stalwarts: CP de Silva in 1964 and Maithripala Sirisena in 2014.’ »

Hirunika Premachandra’s Dramatic Entry to Opposition Ranks made Udaya Gammanpila Exit Hastily from the Maithripala camp.

Multiple sources of the government and the opposition confirmed that Western Provincial Councilor Hirunika Premachandra’s move to cross over to the common opposition ‘quickened’ Udaya Gammanpila decision to break ranks with the JHU.

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While it is widely believed that a businessman-Parliamentarian who is officially representing the opposition acted as the “broker” of the crossover, Hirunika Premeachandra’s presence in the common opposition has also been a major reason for Gammanpila’s exit.
Continue reading ‘Hirunika Premachandra’s Dramatic Entry to Opposition Ranks made Udaya Gammanpila Exit Hastily from the Maithripala camp.’ »

Mahinda Image Loses Its Magic as Support Rapidly Erodes for Govt in Past 20 days

By
Dharisha Bastians

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The 8 January 2015 presidential election is a feeding frenzy for international conspirators and the LTTE rump. The candidacy of Maithripala Sirisena is not part of the democratic attempt to effect change through a multi-party, pluralistic electoral process. He is Washington’s pawn in the grand geopolitical struggle for influence between the US and China.

The Sirisena candidacy project is the brainchild of vengeance-seeking, power-hungry ex-President Chandrika Kumaratunga and former Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera. He challenges President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s bid to remain in power for a third unprecedented term in order to ensure Sri Lankan troops and the Commander-in-Chief is tried in The Hague for crimes of war.

President Rajapaksa must be re-elected to continue to protect the motherland, liberated from the clutches of terrorism only five short years ago. A victory for his opponent would not only endanger Sri Lanka’s sovereignty, but bring the Government’s mega development drive to a grinding halt.

The longevity of the Rajapaksa legacy, therefore, must be ensured. It has become imperative in the ‘national interest’.

Once upon a time, President Mahinda Rajapaksa was the Pied Piper. His words, like the Piper’s, enchanting music in the Grimm fairytale, had a hypnotic quality. In droves, the people followed him. He was their liberator, their mighty king, their salvation and their savior.

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Where is the Money Coming from for the Multi-billion Dollar Election Advertising Campaign of President Rajapaksa?-UNP

(Text of Statement Issued by the United National Party on december 11th 2014)

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The arrogance and extravagance of the Rajapaksa family regime is all too visible in their latest jaunt to Tirupati in South India. The trip was scheduled in the heat of the election cycle, when the forces opposing his rule are agitating for change and the end to the plunder of this state by a single family.

Undoubtedly, President Rajapaksa needs divine intervention at this Presidential election. He will have to look to the heavens to try to win back the favour of the people, who have tired of his nepotism, corruption and self-serving administration.

But as the opposition in this country we are obligated to query where the money came from for the President’s recent devout excursion. Who is incurring the enormous costs of the president and his entourage of lackeys who travelled to Tirupati on a special aircraft hired from SriLankan Airlines?

In addition to the enormous costs of chartering a plane, there is a larger loss of revenue from the aircraft being removed from its normal schedule. Paying passengers are left stranded in numerous airports and SriLankan Airlines is being forced to incur those costs as well.

Continue reading ‘Where is the Money Coming from for the Multi-billion Dollar Election Advertising Campaign of President Rajapaksa?-UNP’ »

Rajinikanth-starrer ‘Lingaa’ to hit theatres at 1 a.m.

Mired in controversies over the ownership of the original storyline, the Rajinikanth starrer ‘Lingaa’ will hit theatres at 1 a.m. on Friday.

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The Madras High Court Bench in Madurai on Thursday permitted ‘Rockline’ Venkatesh, producer of the movie, to release the movie on Friday on condition that he should deposit Rs.5 crore in cash besides providing bank guarantee for an equal sum to the credit of the Registrar (Administration) of the Bench.
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A man who has created a sanctuary for parrots in the midst of bustling Chennai

by Sameera Ahmed

On a typical evening, Pycrofts road looks like any other busy main road in Chennai. As motorists and other vehicles speed past an inconspicuous-looking building and pedestrians hurry home on a typical Friday evening, quite a few of them instantly gaze up and a look of amazement passes fleetingly on their faces.

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Some of them point out into the sky, while others come to a complete stop outside the building. Some even get down and enquire and as they do, hundreds and hundreds of feathery-little green parrots perched on the terrace of the building and on wires adjacent to it take flight.
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“Executive Presidency must be Retained to Fully Implement the 13th Amendment for the Tamil People”-“Col”Karuna


By

Nabeela Hussain

Deputy Minister of Resettlement and one time second in command of the LTTE, Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman spoke to Dailymirror on the coming Presidential Election, his opinion on the constitutional changes and the reformation of the LTTE.


Q:hat is your opinion on the promises made by Maithripala Sirisena on the abolishment of the executive presidency, the establishment of independent commissions and the change in electoral systems?

This is not possible. They’re agreement is alright, but practically they can’t implement it. The executive presidency, is a promise made by everyone. Even Chandrika when she was campaigning for her second term promised that she would abolish the executive presidency when she was elected. But she didn’t do that. The people who are making these promises are backed by her now.

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President Rajapaksa Claims he can Entice Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to the Govt with One cup of Coffee just as he did with Tissa Attanayake.

By

Chamara Sampath

Addressing his maiden propaganda rally in Anuradhapura, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said today that he needed only a cup of coffee to lure Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to the UPFA.

He said, “It is not a big problem when one leaves the party to welcome another, Tissa Attanayake joined our party soon after having a cup of coffee with me. If they take someone from us we will retaliate by taking someone from them. We took the secretary and we can also take Ranil. Only one cup of coffee would be necessary for that. They attempted to give dollars and take our members. We won’t spend money in that manner”

He said Tissa Attanayake was not taken by giving money. He said he had only had a cup of coffee with him.

Continue reading ‘President Rajapaksa Claims he can Entice Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to the Govt with One cup of Coffee just as he did with Tissa Attanayake.’ »

Jathika Hela Urumaya Stalwart Udaya Gammanpila who Jumped from Mahinda to Maithri has Jumped Back to Mahinda From Maithri.

Jathika Hela Urumaya Deputy Secretary and Legal Advisor Udaya Gammanpila announced his decision to leave the JHU and support Mahinda Rajapaksa at the next presidential election, just three weeks after resigning from his Ministerial portfolio in the Western Provincial Council.

On November 18, he and General Secretary of the JHU Patali Champika Ranawaka resigned from their ministerial portfolios and several days later the JHU extended its support to the common candidate Maithripala Sirisena.

Continue reading ‘Jathika Hela Urumaya Stalwart Udaya Gammanpila who Jumped from Mahinda to Maithri has Jumped Back to Mahinda From Maithri.’ »

UNP Defector Tissa Attanayake Replaces SLFP Defector Maithripala Sirisena as “Honourable” Minister of Health.

Former General Secretary of the United National Party Tissa Attanayake has been sworn in as the Minister of Health after crossing over to the government to support President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Attanayake crossed over to the government on Monday (8).

He replaces the former Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena, who defected to the opposition to become the common candidate of the opposition for the next presidential election. Following the defection of Sirisena, the post of the Minister of Health has been vacant while Deputy Minister Lalith Dissanayake was the Acting Minister of Health.

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A Poem that fits the spirit of Free Market Economy & Prosperity: “Where Lifestyle Grows Good Business”

By K. Thirukumaran

Travelling along 401 East towards Montreal from Toronto, one can spot the sign “United Counties of Leeds and Grenville”, east of Kingston, Ontario.

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The Town of Gananoque, known for the Thousand Islands Tourism area is located in The Leeds and Grenville United Counties of Ontario. It is also the home of a major bridge to cross onto the United States of America, still the capital of vibrant free market economies.

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Bharati’s poems and works are capable of creating a sense of upliftment and values whenever they are recalled

Subramania Bharati wrote his way into people’s hearts. On the occasion of his birth anniversary – December 11, CHITRA BALASUBRAMANIUM throws light on Bharati, the journalist and the writer.

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by Chitra Balasubramanium

BHARATI’S GREATNESS was multi-faceted. Though renowned as a gifted poet, he had also achieved great heights in the field of journalism. Whether as Ettayapuram poet, or as Tamil teacher in Madurai Sethupathy School, Bharati’s genius had always had strong leanings towards writing and journalism. He lived his life with the motto “Writing is my mission”.
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From the Peace Secretariat to the Ministry of Disaster Management and Human Rights

By

Prof.Rajiva Wijesinha M.P.

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Basil had told me that I did not need to worry about the Peace Secretariat being closed because I had another position too, that of Secretary to Mahinda Samarasinghe’s Ministry of Disaster Management and Human Rights. That was correct, and for anyone else that would have been a full time job. But the wider dimensions of the work we did, and in particular the need to coordinate work with regard to the North, had been facilitated by my position at the Secretariat, with the authority to coordinate responses from a range of Ministries.

In theory the Ministry had a coordinating role with regard to humanitarian assistance but, during the course of that year, Basil had ensured that was eroded. The Consultative Committee on Humanitarian Assistance, which Minister Samarasinghe had chaired, hardly met in 2009, and its role was taken over by a Task Force for the North which Basil chaired. That did not initially include any Tamils, which was typical of the command structures Basil enjoyed, though after some protests Minister Douglas Devananda was included.

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Opposition Alliance is a Cauldron of Confusion without Coherent or Consistent Policy-Prof.GL Peiris

By
Shihara Maduwage

Prof.GL Peiris-pic by: Nisal Baduge-courtesy: Daily Mirror

Prof.GL Peiris-pic by: Nisal Baduge-courtesy: Daily Mirror

In an interview with the Daily Mirror Prof. G. L. Peiris, the Minister of External Affairs, spelled out the reasons why the country needs an executive presidential system and responded to the allegations and criticisms leveled against his ministry.


Q:What are your reasons for maintaining that the country needs an executive presidential system?

The need of the hour is a strong and effective government. It is abundantly clear that terrorism could have never been eradicated from this country in the absence of a strong executive. During the war, the nature and the gravity of the threat was very obvious to everyone – the general atmosphere of intimidation which prevailed in the country. Today the threat is equally serious but not so obvious.

Q:On what basis do you say that?

Continue reading ‘Opposition Alliance is a Cauldron of Confusion without Coherent or Consistent Policy-Prof.GL Peiris’ »

Maithripala Sirisena Denies signing any Individual Pact with the TNA,UNP or JHU


by

Dasun Edirisinghe

Opposition Presidential Candidate Maithripala Sirisena yesterday assured that he would not enter into any pact with the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) or any other party to get their support for the Jan. 08 election.

Addressing the heads of print and electronic media at the Solis Hotel, Pitakotte, Sirisena said that they had met some members of the TNA to discuss the presidential election, but hadn’t entered into any agreement with them.

Sirisena said that he had not signed a separate agreements with the JHU or the UNP contrary to claims to that effect by former UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake, who joined the government on Monday.

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Vasudeva Nanayakkara to Commit Suicide if Executive Presidency is not Abolished During his Lifetime.


By

Kavindya Thomas

Minister of National Languages and Social Integration, Vasudeva Nanayakkara stated he will take his own life, if the executive presidential system was not abolished during his lifetime.The statement was made at a media briefing held in Colombo yesterday (10).

During the briefing, he said the abolishment of the executive presidential system was essential and the executive powers should be bestowed upon the Parliament as a whole, since that was where the democratically elected representatives were in action.

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President Rajapaksa with Son Yoshita Seeks Blessings of Lord Venkateswara at Tirumala in India amidst Unprecedented Security Arrangements

By
GP Shukla

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Wednesday offered prayers at the famous hill temple of Lord Venkateswara.

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After an overnight stay in the sacred town, he took part in the Suprabhata seva in the temple in the wee hours of the day. Despite being entitled for the Mahadwaram entry, he preferred reaching the temple through the Vaikuntam queue complex along with his entourage.

While the temple priests honoured him with the Silk vastram of the deity, the authorities presented him with the New year diary, calendar and memento of the Lord.

The President’s son Yoshita Rajapaksa, who accompanied him, also participated in the Thomala seva.

Continue reading ‘President Rajapaksa with Son Yoshita Seeks Blessings of Lord Venkateswara at Tirumala in India amidst Unprecedented Security Arrangements’ »

Two Up Country Tamil Deputy Ministers Elected from Nuwara Eliya District-Digambaram and Radhakrishnan-Resign Posts to Support Maithripala.

Two newly appointed deputy ministers of President Mahinda Rajapaksa Government yesterday relinquished their ministerial portfolios two days after incumbent handed over nominations to run for presidency for a third time.

Deputy Minister of Botanical Gardens and Public Recreation Velusami Radhakrishnan submitted his resignation today, just hours after Deputy Minister of National Languages and Social Integration Udeiappan Palani Digambaram tendered his resignation.

Both deputy ministers have expressed support to the President’s challenger, common opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena at the presidential elections on 08 January.

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If Sirisena Wins Poll, President and his Brothers may Try to Retain Power by Resorting to Compliant Courts or Military – ICG

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(TEXT OF OVERVIEW IN BRIEFING RELEASED BY INTERNATIONAL CRISIS GROUP ON FORTHCOMING SRI LANKAN PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS)

Sri Lanka’s presidential election, scheduled for 8 January 2015, looks set to defy the predictions of many and be a true competition. As such, the polls threaten risks and promise opportunities for long-term stability and post-war reconciliation. The sudden emergence of a strong opposition candidate caught many, including President Mahinda Rajapaksa, by surprise.

Running on a platform of constitutional reforms to limit executive power and restore independent oversight bodies, the opposition coalition led by former Rajapaksa colleague Maithripala Sirisena seems set to pose the first strong challenge to Rajapaksa in nearly a decade. Amid a restrictive climate for civil society, for Tamils and for religious minorities, the risk of serious election-related violence merits close international attention and active efforts to prevent political instability, including the possibility of extra-constitutional means by Rajapaksa to retain power.

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Sri Lanka’s Presidential Election: Risks and Opportunities-International Crisis group


(Text of Media Release Issued by the International Crisis Group)

Colombo/Brussels | 9 Dec 2014

Sri Lanka’s upcoming presidential election promises more competition than was initially anticipated. But with that comes a great risk of violence. Long-term stability and post-war reconciliation can only be achieved through a peaceful election resulting in a government committed to serving the interests of all Sri Lankans.

Surprising many observers, Sri Lanka’s 8 January presidential election between incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa and his former ally Maithripala Sirisena looks set to be a close contest. Promising to abolish the executive presidency and revive parliamentary democracy, the opposition offers a different vision from that of the government, which is increasingly entrenched in power.

In its latest briefing, Sri Lanka’s Presidential Election: Risks and Opportunities, the International Crisis Group examines the challenges facing Rajapaksa and the opposition, and how domestic and international actors can mitigate the risk of political instability.

The briefing’s major findings and recommendations are:

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“I have a Dream……….. I have a Dream of Seeing Maithripala Sirisena as the next Executive President………. I have a Dream….

By

Vishwamithra 1984

“Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.”
~Edgar Allan Poe

I have a hope. Sometimes, it goes beyond that and becomes an expectation. The hope is that this country will once again be one in which every citizen is equal; a country in which members of one ethnic group, both individually and collectively, will feel totally and completely equal to the others, embracing each other not out of forced reconciliation but genuine emotion and feel.

I have a dream MS

Those hopes, aspirations and expectations have been dashed over and over again. But the dream continues.

Continue reading ‘“I have a Dream……….. I have a Dream of Seeing Maithripala Sirisena as the next Executive President………. I have a Dream….’ »