Sri Lanka News

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Mervyn the menace out! – booted out, sacked or quit?

MervinSilvaPresidential Secretary Lalith Weerathunga says that there is no plan to appoint Minister Mervin Silva as the nominee of the President to the Constitutional Council.

Meanwhile Minister Mervin Silva has submitted his resignation letter to the President last evening. Minister Silva said yesterday morning to Lanka-e-News that he would resign to accept posting to the Constitutional Council.

When enquired about the Presidential Secretary’s statement, Minister Silva said that the appointment to the Constitutional Council was only his thoght.

Meanwhile, the SLFP Disciplinary Committee report on Minister Silva’s violent act in Rupavahini Corporation is to be released this week. Sources say that the Minister was asked to tender his resignation since the committee has recommended his removal. Minister Mervin Silva said to Lanka-e-News yesterday that certain people did not like his being a MP.

The 17th amendment to the constitution has not defined the President’s nominee to the Constitutional Council.

There was a delay of appointing the minority party representative to the Constitutional Council but former Auditor General S.C. Mayadunne has now been chosen for the slot. The President has the final mandate to appoint the Council members.

Meanwhile Lanka-e-News learns that the President has asked Mr. Mayadunne to meet him twice but he has not come to meet the President.

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February 18, 2008 Posted by | News and politics, World News | 1 Comment

Govt.`s pact with a Terrorist Group for elections is unique!

Govt.`s pact with a Terrorist Group for elections is unique! – First of an illegal agreement anywhere in the World! – Lakshman

Lakshman KiriellaAddressing a Media meeting at the UNP Media unit today (7Feb), UNP M.P. Lakshman Kiriella said that this Rajapakse Govt. for political opportunism would strike a nefarious deal even with an internationally repudiated terrorist group like TMVP (Tamil Makkal Viduthalai puligal) led by Karuna, a breakaway faction of the LTTE. (Karuna is now in jail in UK on charges of fraudulent entry to the UK allegedly assisted by the Rajapakse Govt. He is also to be tried for human rights violations).

Explaining why the UNP withdrew from contesting in the forthcoming elections in the East, he said, the Govt. has entered into an agreement with a terrorist group, the TMVP who is contesting elections, and as TMVP is continuing with its terror activities fanned by the Govt., it is imprudent on security reasons to contest the Eastern polls. Already 28 persons (18 of them are candidates!) have been abducted just within two months of handing over of nomination papers. Besides, the Govt. has not taken any action to disarm these paramilitary terror groups.

Comparing the death tolls during the tenure of the UNP when Ranil Wickremesinghe was the Prime Minister and that under the Rajapakse regime, there were only 15 deaths under the UNP, but, under Rajapakse Govt. just in two years over 8000 have died; last month alone, there were 150 deaths and over 500 were injured.!, he exclaimed.

He asserted, you can indulge daily in empty boasts of winning a war, like an underworld ‘Chandiya’ while compromising the security, lives and welfare of the people as well as the sovereignty of the country. But, what is more important is to win a war without fighting a war by sagacity and strategy. This is how UNP fought the terrorists. How did the LTTE break into two, with Karuna, the second in command, breaking away? He asked. How did this huge loss to Prabakaran come by. He questioned. This was a loss Prabakaran could not ever repair, he asserted.

President is now riding roughshod on the woes of the people burdening them endlessly with price hikes, taxes and hardships on the pretext of a so called war. Who gave the President and his Govt., the mandate to pursue a war? Is it not this same President at the last elections who solemnly promised to the people that he would bring about a political solution within three months of his coming to power and is it not for this the people voted him into power? He asked.

It is therefore the President and his Govt. who should take full responsibility for precipitating this panic, turmoil and dire poverty in this erstwhile peace loving Sri Lanka, he concluded.

February 7, 2008 Posted by | News and politics | Leave a comment

Govt. robbing Peter to pay Paul policy!

It might be recalled, the Rajapakse Govt. raised a massive 500 $ million loan on bond issue a few months ago through the HSBC (Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation).This was despite a huge hue and cry against it by the UNP on behalf of the people on the ground that the Govt. was mortgaging the country’s future by borrowing at exorbitant rates of interests when it can be raised at lower rates. Even Economic experts of the country were averse to this borrowing.

The Govt. said that this loan was to fund infrastructure projects, but, to the dismay of all, the Central Bank later admitted the loan was raised to pay off another debt of the Govt.

Now, the borrowing spree of the Govt. has begun again! This time allegedly for funding State owned projects, or will it end up as another HSBC loan?

This time it is the National Savings Bank (NSB) which is to borrow from the Foreign Market and in turn lend it to the Government in rupee terms – the amount 50 million dollars!

It is noteworthy that this is the second time the NSB is assisting the Govt. Earlier, it provided a loan worth Rs. 450 million.

The economists are worrying and wondering, how much more is in the pipeline to the detriment of the country’s economy?

February 5, 2008 Posted by | News and politics | Leave a comment

`Mervyn the country`s scourge` Rupavahini serial extends by unpopular demand!

mervin-silvaFollowing the recent attack on the Rupavahini News Director by Minister Mervyn and his ‘kudu mastaan’ underworld gang, all those Rupavahini staff who vehemently protested against the Minister and his gang’s unruly hooliganism on that occasion are now being systematically attacked or being threatened one by one.

A few days ago, the News producer of the same Institution was brutally assaulted. Just yesterday (30 Jan), another of the staff, Dushantha had narrowly escaped when two armed men had entered his house and inquired for him. Fortunately, Dushantha was not at home.

The tragic situation in the country is that Minister Mervyn is still parading as a Hero, although the Govt. has not taken any disciplinary action against him, yet, although it has made solemn promises!

January 31, 2008 Posted by | News and politics | Leave a comment

Cobras are less venomous than the bipeds in politics!

Sri Lanka Politicians always do a lot of kerb-crawling for journalists when they are in the Opposition. After their purpose is served, the members of the Fourth Estate get unceremoniously kicked out. That has happened in the past, is happening at present and will happen in the future, regardless of who is at the levers of power. So, it behoves journalists to avoid politicians like the plague if it is the wellbeing of the media they strive for. Those who choose to sleep with dogs, so goes a popular saying in this country, are destined to get up with ticks. The fate of our brethren in the state media is a case in point.

We pledge solidarity with the Rupavahini workers once again but have to say this of their effort to mobilise politicians to ensure their safety and freedom: "Comrades, you are barking up the wrong tree!"

If a journalist happens to see a politician and a cobra on his way, as we keep sayingcobras, he must always avoid the former. Cobras are less venomous than the bipeds in politics!

This part originated from the Editorial today

January 30, 2008 Posted by | News and politics | 5 Comments