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Sunday February 21st, 2010

Mano threatens to split from UNF
The rift between Ranil Wickremesinghe led United National Party (UNP) and its coalition partner Mano Ganesan led Democratic People’s Front (DPF) took a dramatic twist yesterday with Ganeshan accusing the UNP leader of attempting to split the Tamil vote base. Full Story

Door still open for Fonseka,

United National Party (UNP) General Secretary Tissa Attanayaka said that the doors are still open for General Sarath Fonseka, JVP, or any other party to join the United National Front (UNF), when contesting the upcoming General Election. Full Story

JVP says ‘thanks, but no’
Meanwhile, the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) said yesterday that everything is in line to contest the next general election under the banner of Democratic National Alliance and that they will finalise nominations by next Friday (26). Full Story
A hint of going it alone by the UNP at the general election was unwittingly indicated on Thursday when party Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe was spotted alone when the opposition gathered at the Jayawardene Centre at Town Hall, Colombo to launch a million signature campaign to obtain the release of Gen.(retd.) Sarath Fonseka from military custody (Pic by Ishara Kodikara)

Three TNA victims opt to contest from UPFA
The mysterious TNA decision to sideline as many as nine of its former MPs has resulted in at least three of those seeking nominations from the UPFA Full Story

SriLankan not aware of its own record
Two woman pilots of the national carrier have made history recently by being the first all female cockpit crew to fly a Lankan aircraft on an international flight and the SriLankan has yet to even... Full Story

President Rajapaksa confident of 2/3 majority
President Mahinda Rajapaksa is confident that the United People’s Freedom Alliance, led by his Sri Lanka Freedom Party, will win the forthcoming parliamentary elections ‘very comfortably’. Asked whether his realistic target was a two-thirds majority, he responded: “I think we will be able to get that or at least close to that.” Full Story


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Lanka needs carrot, not stick
Are Sri Lanka’s problems caused by too much democracy? Western analysts were dismayed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s recent election victory over General Sarath Fonseka, who led the military defeat of the Tamil Tigers. Full Story

Cupid stole missing schoolboys
The sudden disappearance of four school boys from Bandaragama early this week that shook the country though had a happy ending when they were traced by Thursday, the real culprit of the whole episode appearing to be cupid. Full Story

TMVP to join with UPFA to contest Ampara
The Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal(TMVP) which has decided to field candidates alone in the district of Batticaloa and Trincomalee
indicated that they would most likely join forces with the UPFA to contest in Ampara. Speaking to The Nation, Azad Moulana spokesperson of the party cited that the TMVP hopes to gain at least five seats from all three districts. Full Story

Interpol to probe Danuna’s overseas accounts
Police media spokesperson, Superintendent of Police (SP) Prishantha Jayakody confirmed yesterday to The Nation that the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) will seek the assistance of the International Police (INTERPOL) to gather information on foreign bank accounts belonging to Danuna Tilakaratne, the son-in-law of retired General Sarath Fonseka. Full Story

Former Speaker WJM joins SLFP
The President’s media division said that W J M Lokubandara and his wife were amongst the eminent persons who participated at yesterday’s SLFP working committee gathering that took place at the Bandarawela Town Hall.
At this meeting, the President said that the country’s development process designed for the immediate future is propelled by youthful vigour and energy.  Full Story

All processions banned
The Officer in Charge of the Election Secretariat Police, Senior DIG Gamini Navaratne said that all politically motivated processions have been banned until April 15 with the commencement of the handing over of nominations for the April 8 general elections. Full Story

New circular to totally wipe out ragging – Minister Wishwa Warnapala
Minister of Higher Education, Professor Wishwa Warnapala
said that a new circular has been prepared to combat university ragging. “Looking at past experiences we saw the need to take strict measures to combat ragging in Sri Lanka. Full Story

Jackson Anthony won’t contest
Contrary to popular opinion, veteran media personality Jackson Anthony will not be contesting the upcoming general election.
Speaking to The Nation, Anthony said,“There have been stories spreading around the media that I’ll be contesting the election from the government. Full Story



Symbolic parting of ways
Nominations for the forthcoming general elections opened this week, and will conclude in the coming week, and the battle lines are becoming clearer, as respective political parties weigh their options and decide on strategy for the poll.
The ruling United Peoples’ Freedom Alliance (UPFA) is busy finalising its Nomination lists and briefing candidates, while at the same time trying to avoid intra-party rivalry. Full Story

General Fonseka under pressure not to contest general election
The arrest of General Sarath Fonseka by Military Police for questioning about his alleged complicity in a conspiracy to overthrow the government served as a tonic to the highly demoralised UNP and the JVP. This event provided them with a telling slogan to be used at the upcoming general election.
The leaders of the two parties lost no time in attacking the government at hastily convened media briefings and street protests saying that a war hero, who had liberated the country from terrorism, had been arrested after branding him as a traitor. Full Story


Mahinda’s crowning political glory 21-years ago
I remember Mahinda Rajapaksa visiting our home in the early 1970s. It was due to the connection he had with my father, Gunapala Wickremaratne, who was, then, Deputy Director General of Education. His mother, Urugamuwe Katharina Amarasinghe’s elder sister was married to Buddhiyagama Dahanayaka Loku Mahattaya. Full Story

Star-studded line up to contest
Going by the prevailing political atmosphere the 2010 General Election is bound to be a memorable event for all Sri Lankans. If you look at the nomination lists, one thing that promises to catch your eye is the number of movie stars, singers, sportsmen, and war heroes who will be contesting the election.  Full Story

When convenience becomes nuisance
Some marriages just don’t last, especially not those that see two extremely different personalities coming together on account of one moment of attraction. We are talking about the United National Party (UNP) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), the historic marriage a couple of months ago and the quick falling-apart of the same. Full Story

You can win without ruining others’ walls
It is a common sight to see grinning faces of ‘educated, intelligent, heroic, sensitive, enthusiastic, capable’ people on each and every parapet wall wherever you go, during an election. These grinning faces may promise you the sun, moon and stars no matter whether they can give one kilo of rice for a reasonable price - if not free - in reality. Full Story


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Teams evenly poised for a thrilling battle
A high scoring finale is expected in the Sri Lanka Cricket Bank of Ceylon Inter-Provincial tournament where two star-studded teams MAS Kandurata and Hidramani Ruhuna meet at De Soysa Stadium, Moratuwa today. Both teams have performed considerably well to book berths in the final and the cricket crazy fans of Moratuwa are sure to experience an entertaining final filled with explosive batting and exciting cricket. Full Story

Cambrians provide shock of the season - beat Royal
Prince of Wales led by Nuwantha Peiris produced the shock of the on-going under 19 schools cricket season when they thrashed Royal by nine wickets at Reid Avenue yesterday. Royal’s strong batting line-up was humbled by right-arm medium-pacer Malshan Mendis who ripped through seven batsmen in the first innings for 60 runs and end with impressive match figures of 9 for 149. Full Story

How long can India sustain No.1?
Since that acrimonious Test series Down Under in 2007-08 which they lost 2-1 to Australia, India have been threatening to become the No. 1 Test playing nation in world cricket. Two years down the line India has reached the pinnacle as a Test-playing nation by holding onto their No. 1 ICC Test ranking position. Their win by an innings and 58 runs over South Africa, the other contenders at Kolkata saw the two-Test series ending in a draw with each team winning one Test apiece. Full Story

Stanley, the traditionalist
There is a saying in cricket parlance – playing with a straight bat which is described in the Idioms dictionary as “someone who plays a straight bat is honest and has traditional ideas”. That phrase could not be more appropriate when describing Stanley Jayasinghe, the former stalwart of the Sri Lanka cricket team now living in retirement at his spotless home at Pelawatte, Battaramulla. Full Story

Kellalapotha reaches 100-wicket milestone
Nineteen year old Ruwantha Kellalapotha of St. Thomas’ College, Matale, became the first
schoolboy bowler from the Central Province, perhaps from the outstations to reach the milestone of 100 wickets this season. He achieved this feat against Trinity College ‘A’ this week. Full Story
The tradition lives on
The Jaffna Peninsula, arguably the worst affected region during the ruthless war, experienced the most severe destruction, loss of lives and disruption to the day to day life of most of the people. Yet to the credit of some of the Jaffna schools they ensured that the traditional big matches were continued, as far as possible, despite the trials faced. No doubt to most of the cricket lovers who got battered by the 30-year-old armed conflict, these big matches must have been their only consolation at that time. Full Story

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