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Sunday May 16th, 2010

Investment tangles ordered out
With an eye on the urgent need to attract investors to feed the accelerated development process set in motion by the government, Cabinet this week appointed a Sub Committee with plenty of brain power, “to make an assessment of legislative and regulatory impediments hampering investment and obstructing a speedy decision making process,” and recommend remedial measures to improve the situation.

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Authorities sleep on poison lead
Despite widespread warnings about high content of highly toxic lead in most locally manufactured paints, authorities have so far failed to take any measures to enforce any standards as done in other countries.

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‘One-shot’ to Ranil
Mounting allegations against UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe by some party members of misusing party funds took another twist when Ratnapura District Parliamentarian Ranjan Ramanayaka raised the issue...

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Bars no bar to belief

Prisoners and remandees held at Welikada are busy these days preparing for Vesak. While those engaged in putting up a pandol outside the prison gates worked on their task with their guards, some of those inside captured by our lens are sprucing up the little temple inside

(Pic by Rukshan Abeywansha)

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CMC to spend Rs.75M to rebuild drains
Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) this year has set a task of allocating Rs.75 million as capital expenditure to construct new drains and de-silt existing drains in view of putting an end to Colombo roads going under flood water even in a small rain. CMC Special Commissioner Omar Kamil said, accordingly, the project will be initiated in the areas of Bluomendhal, Maitland Crescent...

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Lanka calls on EU to partner peace process
A top level Lankan officials delegation led by Attorney General Mohan Pieris Friday briefed European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response Kristalina Georgiva on steps taken by the government to reap the peace dividend and called on the EU to become partners in the process.
A communiqué from the Sri Lankan Embassy in Brussels said the Attorney General was joined in the discussion by Treasury Secretary...

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NEWS

GL to bring back efficacy to External Affairs Ministry
Minister of External Affairs Professor G.L. Peiris is to change the policy followed by his predecessor when dealing with Sri Lankan diplomats stationed around the world, in order to maximise efficiency and cut back unnecessary costs.
Speaking to The Nation, the Minister said, “It is a good idea from time to time to summon the envoys in a particular part of the world to a country in that region, instead of getting all of them down to Colombo at once. For one thing, when you ask all your representatives in the world to come down to Sri Lanka it’s very costly.

Full Story

New CEO of Rivira Media Corporation
Well-known marketing and management professional Sunil Lakshmanasinghe has taken over as the new CEO of Rivira Media Corporation, the publisher of Rivira, The Nation and The Bottom Line newspapers.
Lakshmanasinghe has many years of well-rounded experience in General/Corporate Management, Business Planning and Development, Retail Management, Product Planning and Development, Project Management, Marketing and Sales and Customer Care.

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Floods recede, affected continue to suffer
The torrential rains and the ensuing floods have now begun to recede, but those affected in the disaster continue to suffer.
According to the Disaster Management Centre 20 lives were claimed during last week’s rains and floods, while 546,247 others were affected by the floods.
Meanwhile, 15,361 people have been displaced with their houses being washed away. Currently, the displaced are being facilitated at 78 centres around the country.

Full Story

Receding flood waters could bring disease outbreak
Although no flood related diseases have been reported so far, there is a real threat for an outbreak of several diseases once the water subsides, Health Ministry sources have warned. These diseases include, diarrhoea, dysentery, typhoid, hepatitis A and hepatitis E, as well as dengue.

Full Story

FIFA WORLD CUP 2010



POLITICS

The kraal in disarray}
The controversy swirling over the fate of the opposition United National Party (UNP) refuses to go away in a hurry, with the party arriving at a few crucial decisions this week.
A high-powered party committee, headed by former Speaker Joseph Michael Perera, on Friday obtained working committee approval for all high posts in the party, barring that of the Secretary and the Treasurer, to be elected.

Full Story

HR outfits at it again
A number of anti-Sri Lankan forces in the West have resumed directing war crime charges at Sri Lanka just at the psychological moment when the country is preparing to mark the first anniversary of the victory over LTTE terrorism that plagued it for over 26 years.
HR charges ‘resurrected’
The British Channel 4 TV, London Times, International Crisis group, Amnesty...

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NEWS FEATURES

RAIN HAVOC Land filling; illegal constructions; garbage dumps root cause
Continuous torrential rains experienced in the country throughout the week has resulted in turning normal day-to-day life of people upside-down as most areas going under flood waters and hit by landslides. Other than the usual flooding areas in Kalutara, Ratnapura and Gampaha districts, the heart of the country - Colombo city and most of its suburbs are heavily affected by the torrential rains. 

Full Story

Lanka heads powerful G-15 serving collective interests
Sri Lanka will host the next G-15 summit in 2012. At the recently concluded G-15 summit held in Tehran, Iran, President Mahinda Rajapaksa took over the chairmanship of the Group from the President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The Minister of External Affairs Professor G.L. Peiris was part of the delegation that represented Sri Lanka in Teheran.

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Truth and Reconciliation begins with truth, not myth
Last week marked a year after the war ended. There’s been some dispute regarding the exact date, and it is quite unbecoming of the claimants to be quibbling about whether it happened on May 18 or 19. What is important is that it happened, it ended, that our children are safe from suicide bombs and explosions, from forced conscription, dismemberment, displacement and death, in a war that achieved precious little.

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SPORTS

Royal gives St Peter’s a fright – lose 22/20
Centre Dhanushka Ranjan’s hat-trick helped St. Peter’s maintain their unbeaten record for the season despite a superb fightback by Royal when they managed to squeeze out a 22-20 nail-biting win in a vital President’s Trophy Singer League Division I A match played at the Royal Sports Complex yesterday.

Full Story

Federer, Nadal remain focused
Grand Slam kings Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have refused to speculate on another French Open final clash after both were handed straightforward passages to the third round at Roland Garros.
Defending champion Federer and four-time winner Nadal are heavy favourites to meet for the fourth time in five years on the last day of the tournament.

Full Story

Two adamant men (Point Blank)
The past one week in the media as well as on the internet since Sri Lanka’s exit from the final of the ICC World Twenty20 tournament in the West Indies has focused on two individuals for the rather erratic performance of the team. The two individuals under scrutiny are chairman of selectors Ashantha de Mel and veteran cricket star Sanath Jayasuriya, both of whom have the same agenda of not wanting to quit their positions.

Full Story

Antonians regroup for next 4 games
St. Anthony’s College, Katugastota rugby coach Priyantha Gunaratne had an uphill task during last year’s league season which was to help his side remain in the top group. Looking back at the ups and downs St. Anthony’s had to go through last year; Gunartane could claim that his attempts were successful. But this year the case is different.

Full Story

INTERVIEWS

On right track, but deficit worrying – UNP economic wizard
UNP spokesman on economic issues Dr. Harsha de Silva, having successfully beaten all other claimants to the position over the years was this year rewarded with a parliamentary seat from the party’s National List. Though some UNP mouthpieces are well known for their foot in the mouth uttering, Harsha is more the honest intellectual ever ready to give credit to whoever is deserving of it. And he is man enough to acknowledge that what the government has done so far to revive the country is essentially sound, but his greatest worry is huge deficit spending by the state 

Full Story

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