|More place for
skilled workers abroad
soon to be passed in Parliament preventing unskilled
workers seeking jobs abroad, Foreign Employment
Promotion and Welfare Minister Dilan Perera said.
According to the minister attempts are being made to
discourage unskilled workers going abroad as they
are increasingly being ill treated by their
employers, which the minister says has caused
immense pain of mind.
He said the minimum age to go abroad as workers was
raised from 18 to 21 and added next year this would
be further raised to 30. He said this move was
mainly aimed at ‘discouraging’ unskilled workers
going abroad and suffering.
He said plans are underway to send only semi skilled
and skilled workers abroad and Sri Lanka will no
longer be sending domestic workers to work in the
Middle East and few other countries.
The minister said that he was all out to liberalise
this sector and give them the opportunity to work
Sriskandarajah, new CA Chief
Justice S. Sriskandarajah PC has been appointed
president of the Court of Appeal (CA).
The appointment was made by the Parliamentary
Council (PC) that met late last week. Prior to his
appointment Justice Sriskandarajah was a judge of
the Court of Appeal.
According to national list parliamentarian A.H.M.
Azwer who is a member of the PC, the council also
appointed Dhammika Kitulgoda as the secretary to the
Azwer said Kitulgoda will function also as the
secretary general of parliament while helping the PC
in his new capacity as the secretary.
He said appointments to most of the independent
commissions have been completed by the PC and added
commissioners to the Delimitation Commission is yet
to be appointed, which he said would be done in due
A proposal to bring four local bodies under one
authority by the government is shelved, according to
Sources said the government has so far not indicated
reasons but added certainly there is no discussion
or any related programme to further push for the
implementation of this proposal.
Meanwhile, they said that elections to these four
councils is expected to be held only in December
while polls to the balance 14 councils could be held
in September this year. The government postponed
polls to 18 local bodies earlier.
The four councils the government is hoping to hold
polls in December are Colombo, Sri Jayawardenepura,
Dehiwela and Kolannawa.
13th plus is
best says Dilan
Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare Minister
Dilan Perera says 13th Amendment is the only way
forward to settle the ongoing strife in the country.
The minister who is a strong advocator of the 13th
Amendment says even if the entire country rejects
this form of devolution, he will stick to his
He said he believed in 13 plus and added it could
either be 13 plus or 13 minus one plus two. “Either
way, I think this is the only package that could
solve the problems if this is meaningfully
implemented,” he added.
He also said though a solution to the national
question cannot be found without the TNA, the
government should not consider the TNA as the sole
representatives of the Tamils. “This is what the
LTTE said. I want the government to also talk to
EPDP and other responsible Tamil political parties,”
over increase of tasks to workers
Plantation trade unions are up in arms against a
decision of some of the managing companies to
increase the norms and tasks of the workers during
Convener for the National Plantation Workers
Federation (NPWF) V. Puththirasigamoney said his
union is constantly receiving complaints from the
workers that their tasks are raised when they worked
during off days.
According to him if on a working day a worker is
expected to pluck 15 to 16 kilos of tea, some of the
management companies are raising this quantum to 20
to 24 kilos on a holiday.
He said just because workers are paid one and a half
day’s wage during off days, it does not mean the
management should increase the norms and tasks.
“This is a serious infringement of the workers’
rights. If a worker is willing to work during an off
day that means he should be paid extra. This is the
privilege he/she enjoys. But is it fair for the
management to increase the tasks? If that is the
case what is the point in that exercise?” he asked.
He said if the situation continues, then a strong
action would be considered.
United National Party (UNP) National Organiser
Ravi Karunanayake has thanked Speaker Chamal
Rajapaksa for taking prompt action to prevent CID
questioning him over statements made in Parliament.
Karunanayake was summoned by the CID following a
statement he made in Parliament regarding drug
barons and their activities. Though he was summoned
Karunanayake refused to go.
However, when this was informed the Speaker had
summoned the CID chief to his office and had warned
him not to repeat this.
Karunanayake said he was thankful to the Speaker,
the police and including Defence Secretary Gotabhaya
Rajapaksa for standing by him at this time.
“This clearly shows that there are some who are
backing drug barons and their menace to the society.
I only raised the issue about drug dealers and I
don’t understand why anybody should get offended,”