Maha Sanga invoked blessings on Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe
during his visit to Japan. Also in the picture are Maithree
Wickremesinghe and Prime Minister's Secretary, Bradman Weerakoon
40m fraud charge against Pramuka directors
Investigations Department (CID) on Thursday (5) filed a 'B' report at
the Maligakanda Courts following an investigation into malpractices and
fraud allegedly committed by the chairman and Directors of Pramuka
Savings and Development Bank.
complainant in this case is the Central Bank. The report was filed on
the advice of Attorney General K. C. Kamalasabeyson. Pramuka Bank
Chairman and President, Rohan Perera, together with Directors Udaya
Nanayakkara, Camillus Perera, Lasanga Jinadasa, J. A. D. Lanerolle, Dr.
C. W. P. Canagaratna, A. H. A. Mendis and Lucien Fernando have been
served notice to appear in court on December 11.
CID began investigations on certain banking operations of Pramuka Bank
following a complaint made by the Central Bank.
CID, Lionel Goonetilleke said the 'B' report was submitted to court
after an investigation by the CID found that the Pramuka Bank directors
have engaged in a fraudulent transaction involving a property at
Gregory's Road, Colombo 7 for a sum of Rs. 40 million. Goonetilleke
added that the CID probe also found evidence that the president and
directors of Pramuka Bank have acted in violation of Central Bank
regulations as well as committed criminal offences in contravention of
the Penal Code.
Rohan Perera last week nominated businessman Udaya Nanayakkara to the
post of chairman, Pramuka Bank. Perera, however remains as chief
executive officer and president of the bank. The Sunday Leader last week
highlighted how Rohan Perera returned approximately Rs. 37.9 million to
Chairman, Golden Mile Hotel, Vasantha Jayasuriya for 3.6 million shares
which had been issued to Jayasuriya in exchange for land. A property at
Gregory's Road, which belonged to Pramuka Merchant Corporation, Rohan
Perera ordered Pramuka Bank to "purchase" for a sum of Rs. 41
a profit out of this 'sale,' Perera used a sum in excess of Rs. 15
million to pay part of the monies he owed Vasantha Jayasuriya for his
3.6 million shares through Pramuka Merchant Corporation. The monies for
this 'sale' was taken out of the capital funds of Pramuka Bank and
projected to the Central Bank as an investment on property at Gregory's
Road, Colombo 7.
statutory examination report by the Central Bank states that this
transaction was enacted despite Pramuka Bank having been barred in 1999
from purchasing any more property.
over Dr. J.J.'s spending
speculation that Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Refugees Minister Dr.
Jayalath Jayawardena is using Ministry funds to sponsor a live Christmas
programme from Rome at a cost of Rs. 1.8 million, the Minister claims
the monies are to be paid out of his own personal savings.
will pay for a special TV crew with a producer from Swarnavahini to fly
to Rome and televise the special seasonal event.
has previously requested Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe to appoint
him as Christian affairs minister. The
Premier however, handed over the portfolio to Interior Minister John
things remain the same
transport in the once war torn north is still a rickety affair, despite
the resounding strides made in making peace among the warring parties.
British cars navigate the pot-hole ridden highways and the bicycle is
the dominant mode of transport even in government controlled Jaffna.
Early morning, swarms of bicycles inundate the Jaffna streets. Those
riding them care next to nothing about traffic regulations much to the
annoyance of drivers from outside. In LTTE controlled regions, it is far
worse. A public transport system is more or less non existent and
civilians hitch a ride on whatever that is going their way.
railway line all of a sudden disappears into an army camp just out of
Vavuniya town and those who have the luxury of drivable vehicles are
those who come to the region from outside. They are mostly those
attached to the NGOs working in the region.
NGOs have some nice four wheel machinery and so do the officials
attached to the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM). But circumstances
can be demanding and sometimes they too have to bite the dust. Like what
happened to the two SLMC officials who had to circumvent the 7 km long
Delft island on push cycles in the hot sun.
two former warring factions however are well off - pretty well off
compared to the lot of civilians around them.
of the senior LTTE cadres have motorcycles at their disposal and those
at leadership level use luxury four wheel drive vehicles at times. Same
goes for the army and both parties have access to the sea and one party
namely the government side has an airforce at its disposal.
a year of peace, some things still remain the same.
resources development project initiated
can live without food for a few days, but survival without a drop of
water for just 24 hours can be fatal. A country with a rapidly growing
population, it is only a matter of time before Sri Lanka's supply of
water for domestic purposes runs out.
farmers and cultivators, their harvest depends on the uninterrupted
supply of water. But water that is needed for basic living could one day
become a costly affair if proper management programmes are not
to officials from the Irrigation Ministry, the largest portion of water
amounting to 85% is utilised for irrigation purposes, with 6% used for
domestic purposes and 9% for other needs.
water needs to be conserved, since it needs to be provided for such
resources and to the increasing numbers who demand it. "However,
despite the importance of water, it was only recently that a ministry
was established for water management," an Irrigation Ministry
the intention of drawing up an organised plan in preparation for future
disasters, the Water Management Ministry has come-up with new concepts
of water resource development and management. The programmes for 2003
among others include the issue of sand and clay mining in rivers,
especially in the badly affected Deduru Oya and Maha Oya areas.
new water resources development projects that will be designed are
formulated to address the growing demand in agriculture and urban
development, domestic, industry, recreation and environment areas. The
Menik Ganga basin development project, the Moragahakanda reservoir
project, Deduru Oya reservoir project, Yan Oya project, Rambukkana
reservoir project, Ratnapura reservoir project, Ridi Maliyadde poverty
alleviation project in Mahaweli system 'C' and the Mahaweli system 'B'
right bank integrated project among others are being formulated.
the establishment of the National Water Heritage Foundation (NWHF),
Irrigation and Water Management Minister Gamini Jayawickrema Perera has
initiated programmes to co-ordinate matters pertaining to the
Environment and Natural Resources Ministry, Agriculture and Livestock
Development Ministry, Power and Energy Ministry, Education and Culture
Ministry and the Industrial Development Ministry among others.
to Irrigation Department officials, the purpose of establishing the NWHF
is to build and reinforce a social mechanism for researching, conserving
and sharing information and experience of the ancient water heritage,
including the conservation of water and soil, ecological systems and the
agricultural heritage that has passed through generations.
intend promoting the development and management of the conservation of
water and soil, the agricultural heritage and ecological systems on a
community based participatory approach involving user, planner and
policy maker at all levels," the irrigation officials said.
a part of the programme, water from the Mahaweli river has been diverted
to Kala Oya, Malwathu Oya (rivers that flow westwards into the Indian
Ocean) and to the Maduru Oya and Yan Oya (rivers that flow eastwards to
the Bay of Bengal).
series of planning and management activities have already been initiated
for a Southern Sri Lanka River Basin Zone in association with Kumbukkan
Oya, Menik Ganga, Uma Oya, and Kalu Ganga as well," officials from
the Irrigation Ministry said.
is interesting to note that Sri Lanka exhibits extensive areas of water
deficit, with a greater part of the island liable to dry spells that
last several months. Areas of water surplus along the coastal belt of
flood plains, villus and mangrove swamps are also visible.
the 103 water sheds in the country, the Mahaweli basin covers about 16%
of the island's land area. It also carries the largest volume of
discharge amounting to a seventh of the island's run off, with the 325
km Mahaweli river being the only perennial river traversing the northern
in the past when the water was clean, today, the waste products from
factories are diverted to lakes and streams thereby causing damage.
"Due to the emptying of pollutants to the Kelani river, the second
largest river in the country, the threat of the Ambatale reservoir
getting polluted is a possibility," an official of the Environment
and Natural Resources Ministry said.
as the 'Pavithra Ganga Programme,' this plan by the Environment Ministry
aims at educating school children on the value of water, while obtaining
the support of the public to keep the water in their areas free from
pollutants and wastage.
keeping with the newly introduced programmes for water conservation in
the country, the co-ordination of many ministries will hopefully find a
solution to the growing threat of water pollution and scarcity.
of injured students demand justice
Indika Attanayake, the second Sri Jayewardenepura University student who
was critically injured during the clashes between pro-raggers and anti-raggers
at the university, still cannot remember the entire attack or even the
day of the incident. Whatever he knows about the attack is what he heard
from his friends, family or read in the newspapers. Speaking to The
Sunday Leader Indika said that not even animals are beaten this way.
my very first year at university, I was against ragging. The pro-raggers
knew this and they were angry with me about my views. This is the sole
reason for the attack," states Indika.
friends and I didn't take part in any of the university's protests and
picketing campaigns. We didn't even take part in the protests against
the privatisation of universities."
is another reason why they were angry with Indika and this attack was
well planned. They had made wooden poles and hammered nails into them to
attack. According to what he has gathered from his friends, they had hit
him on the head till he bled, almost to death.
is a Ragging Act, but it is not practiced and no one even knows what it
states, he said, adding that even lecturers are scared of the pro-raggers
I can't talk a lot now. I get weak and I cannot remember that
whole day and a few instances of the previous day," he said.
to go back
don't mind having unions at the university if they are good ones,"
said Indika. After what happened, Indika is afraid to go back to the
university. I am a little
scared to go back to university to finish my final year," he said.
final marketing management exam will be in June next year and he doesn't
know if he will be able to sit for it.
Attanayake, Indika's mother was sobbing when she spoke to The Sunday
Leader about this whole incident and especially the attack on her son.
never thought anything like this will ever happen to our son when he
started university," she said.
knew that he was against ragging when he first joined and he didn't get
ragged because he and some of his friends were strong in their views,
many of the pro-raggers didn't like them for this reason."
cannot remember what happened that day. When he was in hospital, he
heard of Samantha's death and the funeral from the radio," she
the next day, he had forgotten about Samantha's death and asked whose
funeral it was his friends went to.
the hospital when he regained consciousness, he recognised his parents,
but didn't know what happened to him and why he was in hospital.
parents, Karuna and Athula Attanayake along with his elder brother
Dimuthu came to the Colombo National Hospital from their home in Kandy.
friends were with him when he was in hospital and brought his parents to
the first few days Indika was in hospital, he was in a serious
condition. His head was swollen and suffered from internal bleeding.
Doctors had to operate on him immediately to save his life.
parents said that they were lucky to get a lot of assistance and support
from the people they work with and while they were in Colombo they
stayed at a relatives's place. "He was red all over the body and
now he has blue and black patches in his body," said his mother.
day-by-day he became better. "It was because of all the doctors and
our prayers that Indika became better and recovered gradually,"
said his mother.
the next two years, Indika has to undergo medication apart from the
vitamins he has to take.
the moment, his parents buy the medicine from a private pharmacy, as
there is a strike by government hospital paramedics. Otherwise, his
parents will have to travel to Colombo every month to get Indika's
medicine from the Colombo National Hospital.
am scared for my son, this is his final year and his final exam is in
June. We don't know if he will be able to sit for it and we really don't
know what the future holds for our son," she lamented.
we are in Kandy, it will be worse for us when he goes back to
university. If something happens, it is not like we can be there
soon," she said.
students who were involved in this attack should be punished," both
Indika and his mother said, adding, "previously no one has ever
been punished, this is why attacks like this keep happening. The pro-raggers
are not scared."
want punishment for the wrongdoers, not for revenge, but the victims are
our children and we want them to be safe. Things like this will keep
happening if they are not punished for the crimes they have committed.
Otherwise these same students will not be afraid to carry out another
attack like this," Indika's mother warned.
elder sister Thushani, studied at Peradeniya University and his elder
brother Dimuthu at Moratuwa University. Indika is the third in his
family and he is not a Mahapola scholarship holder. Therefore, his
parents have to pay for his education and he doesn't deserve to get
beaten like this. Indika has two younger siblings - Sampath studying for
his A/Ls and Sandhika in grade nine.
mother is a primary school teacher, but is a graduate from the
Peradeniya University and Indika's father is a clerk, but a graduate
from the Kelaniya University His mother stated,
children are brought up well and they went to good schools. They are
studying to come up in life - this is what any parent would want for
their children. Whatever we do, we do for our children. We go to work
and earn money and every thing we do is for them. Our lives are our
children and how can another student do this to a fellow student? I am
scared for my younger children, especially when it is time for them to
go to university," she said.
mother couldn't stop stressing the importance of punishing the
then will parents feel that it is safe to send their children to Sri
Lankan universities and t will also make these wrongdoers realise that
they cannot get away from what they have done or will do," she
far, out of the 44 suspects in police custody, 16 persons have been
identified as being involved in the attacks at the Sri Jayewardenepura
outlines plans to strengthen legislature
Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe informed the Speaker of the Japanese
Parliament, Tamisuke Watanuki that he is negotiating with Opposition
Leader Mahinda Rajapakse and other political parties in order to
strengthen the country's legislature.
Prime Minister said he wants to reactivate and strengthen the system of
committees and provide an opportunity for all members of parliament to
contribute actively to those committees.
between the Prime Minister and Watanuki were held at the official
residence of the Speaker on December 4 morning.
the committee system plays an active and strong role in the
Japanese parliament, Premier Wickremesinghe said the Lankan
government wishes to send a delegation of MPs to study the Japanese
said that not only economic co-operation between the two countries, but
also relations between members of the two parliaments should be
said although Sri Lanka, a country rich with a beautiful cultural
heritage was in gloom with perils of war in the recent past, the country
has re-entered the path of peace under the leadership of Prime Minister
Wickremesinghe. Watanuki expressed satisfaction at this new development.
the journey towards peace is an arduous one, may Sri Lanka have the
strength and courage to complete the journey successfully and bring
peace and reconstruct the devastated country into its previous
glory," Watanuki said.
pledged the fullest support of the Japanese parliament to Sri Lanka's
Minister's Secretary, Bradman Weerakoon, Sri Lanka's Ambassador in
Japan, Karunatilake Amunugama and Additional Secretary to the Prime
Minister, Saman Athaudahetti were also present.
to pressurise govt.
People's Alliance (PA) intends pressuring the government to urge
the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to disband their suicide
cadres as a demonstration of its commitment to a negotiated peace.
Leader Mahinda Rajapakse said that despite the PA's stance on the ongoing peace process and the possible outcome
of it, the government has demonstrated good will and shown its
commitment to the peace process.
fact it has sometimes subjugated itself to LTTE pressure. In the name of
democracy, it is timely that the LTTE also demonstrated their faith and
commitment to the process by disbanding their suicide cadres."
matter will be pursued when the Defence Ministry votes are taken up for
debate in parliament tomorrow.
PA that has been critical of the ongoing peace process and piled
criticism on alleged continuation of violence by the LTTE, is of the
view that the LTTE is reluctant to commence decommissioning and says
that at least it should make some symbolic gesture by disbanding the
hooded suicide cadres.
they are no longer going to wage war, then they do not need the suicide
cadres," said Rajapakse.
the recent past, JVP Parliamentary Group Leader Wimal Weerawansa and MEP
Leader Dinensh Gunawardena have been urging parliament that there should
be some symbolic commitment demonstrated by the laying down of arms by
funds not disclosed
public accounts of the President's Fund have not been disclosed to
parliament from 1994 to 1999, government sources said.
the institution charged with the total control of public finance,
financial regulations require that institutions dealing with public
funds present a report at the end of a financial year to parliament
through the relevant minister or the minister of finance.
last financial report on the President's Fund has been presented in
President's Fund generally allocates funds for contingencies, charitable
causes and for reasons that the President may deem fit.
failure to present the reports for many years was raised in parliament
recently with government legislators demanding to know why the
information has not been made available and that they wished to know how
the President has utilised public funds over the past six years.
sources said that six auditor general's reports will be presented
tomorrow in parliament by the minister of finance.
the source said that the reports lacked compressive details as to how
the money has been spent and is expected to give broad headings under
which the money has been utilised.
directs commissioner to probe Sanken Lanka issue
Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe last week directed Labour Commissioner
Mahinda Madihewe to probe into the removal of nearly 64 workers by the
management of Sanken Lanka (Pvt) Ltd.
of these workers have served the company for over 14 years and have been
working in the supply division of the company.
of the company told The Sunday Leader that all 64 of them had been asked
to leave without the company giving them any compensation or prior
notice. These workers also charged they were not granted ETF and EPF
the minister said any company violating the law of the land would be
dealt with severely and added whether the employees were permanent or
temporary, they should have been paid EPF and ETF.
problem at Sanken Lanka was sparked off when two employees reported
about the non payment of EPF and ETF by the management to the Labour
Commissioner. Once the management learnt about this, it sacked both
followed the rest of the workforce walking out demanding that the two
employees be taken back. Angered by this action, the management had told
the entire workforce attached to the supply division that they are
employees who are on strike told The Sunday Leader that repeated appeals
made to the labour commissioner have gone unheeded.
The Sunday Leader contacted the Sanken Lanka Chief Administrative
Officer, Lal Tennakoon he said "These 64 workers are not in the
company cadre and if they have any problems they should go to their
workers are supplied to the company by contractors and also said that
there is no truth in the claim by the workers that the company is going
to close down saying "definitely the company is not going to close
the labour commissioner said this is a rift between the sub contractors
and the main contractors and steps are being taken to get these workers
to start work in another work site.
are also holding discussions with both contractors and trying to come up
with a solution for this problem," the commissioner said.
series - "Meet The Minister"
Sunday Leader will commence a new series where the public will be called
upon to direct issues concerning them to the relevant ministers through
the columns of this newspaper.
the public focus on issues linked to defence and transport at this time,
we have decided to submit your queries to Defence and Transport
Minister, Tilak Marapone for
Sunday Leader invites all your queries to be forwarded to Minister
Marapone to reach us by December 15, 2002.
should be directed to;
The Sunday Leader, First Floor, Colombo
Building, 121, Sir James Peiris Mawatha, Colombo 2.
Ceylon Bible Society (CBS) celebrates 190 years of ministry in Sri
Lanka. The society was established in 1812. The CBS is an inter
denominational organisation involved in the translation, publication and
distribution of scriptures islandwide.
to educate supporters of his position
Minister and Leader of Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) Rauf Hakeem has
undertaken an extensive tour of the east to educate the Muslims
regarding his position, after his own party men attempted to oust him in
a coup attempt.
Minister left for Mutur Friday morning and initially participated in the
Ramazan celebrations with the Muslims of the area. He also visited
Thopur later in the afternoon.
is expected to visit Trincomalee, Ampara, Digamadulla and Jaffna in
order to personally present himself before the Muslims and clear his
protection for dissidents
Sri Lanka Muslim Council (SLMC) dissidents, The Sunday Leader learns are
being given Presidential Security Division (PSD) protection.
placed government sources said that since the coup attempt was made on
SLMC Leader Rauf Hakeem, the dissidents have been afforded this
launches email booking facility
Airlines has launched an email booking facility for its customers in
Hong Kong and Singapore and enhanced these facilities for customers in
few months ago SriLankan Airlines launched its email booking facility in
Sri Lanka where customers in any part of the world could request flight
bookings through the internet at any time of the day or night for any
flight on SriLankan Airlines out of Colombo except to India. New
customers can even book flights to India from Colombo.
email booking section can be accessed from the home page or directly
from the travel planner section of the airline's website;
www.srilankan.lk., a release from SriLankan said.
to raise funds
sale to raise funds towards enhancing the Denipitiya Medical Mission
will be held at the Jubilee Hall (YWCA) at Union Place Colombo 2 on
December 11 and 12.The Denipitiya Medical Mission was established in
1918 and is the only Anglican medical mission in Sri Lanka.
demand for a room at CMC
Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) is facing a crisis with the Opposition
Leader, Milton Liyanage demanding a room for himself, which senior
councilors say has never been done in the 135 year
history of the CMC.
claim for a separate room for the the opposition leader
in the CMC was made by former opposition leader K. Ganeshalingam.
Though he made this request, then mayor Karu Jayasuriya refused to
adhere to this demand on the basis it was not in keeping with the
traditions of the council.
The Sunday Leader reliably learns that CMC Commissioner, Dr. Jayantha
Liyanage is planning to offer the opposition leader a
room that is now vacant following the retirement of the deputy
councilors charged that the appointment of Dr. Liyanage to the post of
commissioner was also unfair, as he was not the most senior officer to
deserve this position. According to informed sources the former mayor
Omar Kameel had suggested in writing that the post of commissioner be
given to either Fowmy Ismail or Vass Gunewardene. "But Dr. Liyanage
was appointed after the council was pressured to do so by some
ministers," he claimed.
200,000 vacancies available
Malaysian jobs for Lankans
Lanka has been chosen as one
of the few countries within the South Asian Association for Regional
Cooperation (SAARC) to enter into an agreement with Malaysia for Sri
Lankans to find jobs, Labour Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said.
to the Minister this rare opportunity is granted only to Sri Lankans to
be employed in the industrial zones in Malaysia.
Minister had discussions
recently with his Malaysian counterpart over job opportunities for Sri
said there are nearly 200,000 vacancies in Malaysia as a result of
Indonesians and Philippinos overstaying their visas and them being
deported by the Malaysian government. Such migrant workers according to
the Minister have also engaged themselves in anti- social activities
thereby forcing the government of Malaysia to deport
them. "This has created a huge void in their man power
resources and we have got a chance to fill it," Samarasinghe told
The Sunday Leader.
these vacancies are now open for the chosen seven countries and one of those countries Malaysia has signed an
agreement with is Sri Lanka. Now
we are going into a lot of new job markets," the Minister said. He
further said that he is confident of the possibility of
attracting offers from European job markets as well.
weeks ago, a delegation
from the Norwegian Chambers of Industry and Commerce
met the Minister in parliament with the acting ambassador of
Norway and discussed the possibility of sending Sri Lankans as
industrial trainees based on the demand of the Norwegian industries
outside their labour force.
delegation that met the Minister had also agreed to offer this
opportunity to Sri Lankans who are currently unemployed.
Lankans if selected to work in Norway would also be given the
opportunity to live with Norwegians under a programme called "Home
Stay." Such Sri Lankans would
be given the chance to live with a selected group of Norwegians and
they get paid. So lot of countries such as the
taking advantage of this system. It is another area we are looking at.
So I am hopeful that we could send people to Norway legally," the
also suggested to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe who is
in Japan to find out whether the Japanese government could give
us a quota in industrial training. We have been sending Sri Lankans to
Japan but only in small
numbers and we want to
increase it if possible," he said.
Minister who said that finding foreign job markets for
Sri Lanka's unemployed would help
lessen the unemployment problem,
further said that South Korea has increased its quota by two
fold. "This is very important because when one goes as an
industrial trainee he is given on-the-job
training. When Sri Lankans are provided with basic training in these
countries, they would be able to come back and contribute to the Sri
Lankan economy," he said.
said the government has also plans to talk to the Shengan countries to
find more opportunities. He said, as Italy is part of the Shengan Treaty
it would be possible for Sri Lanka to send Lankans legally to these
countries. " I think we can make a breakthrough into job markets in
other Shengan countries in Europe," he said.
are also sending a delegation to certain Central Asian countries to
explore the possibility of finding job markets there. Lot of these
countries are on an accelerated economic growth. Lot of them have
discovered oil and natural gas and they are rich in their resources. So
there are a lot of openings for jobs. The population there is small and
not skilled in certain areas and these are areas where Sri Lankans could
capitalise on," the Labour Minister said.
seeks private sector participation following para-medics strike
government is seeking private sector cooperation to fulfil the services
hitherto rendered by the para medics who are at present on strike.
estimated 2000 paramedics islandwide are on strike demanding
a salary hike. Their demand is for a similar salary increase as
that of the nurses.
Sunday Leader learns that the government nurses received three
increments while the paramedics got only one, which they say is unfair.
medics are involved in carrying out certain activities of the hospitals
like blood tests, urine tests, x-rays, CT scanning, ECG tests,
physiotherapy activities and a host of other related activities.
sources said that a
para- medic could easily earn more than Rs. 40,000
monthly with overtime
work as they are paid a big sum of money specially for night shifts.
"So we don't consider their demand to be reasonable.
Also nurses are trained for three years while paramedics are
trained only for a year," hospital sources said.
Director, Private Health Sector Development, Health
Ministry, Dr. Harsha de Silva told The Sunday Leader he is
already negotiating with some private sector institutions to take over
the jobs that the paramedics have been carrying out all these years.
"It is certainly cost effective and we could expect a speedy and an
efficient service through the
private sector," he pointed out.
said already the state health sector has obtained from the private
sector the security services and also
cleaning services and added, the governemnt could easily hire the
services of private sector paramedics.
the ongoing strike by paramedic staff has affected all government
hospitals around the country.
to the Assistant Director - Trade Union Coordination, Health Ministry,
Priyantha Kumara the paramedic staff are still continuing their strike
against the Junaid Commission, which has recommended
that they should not be paid more than the nurses.
says this Commission has only made its submissions to the cabinet but
has not received cabinet ratification
and added though the para medics were going on strike they did not have any
knowledge as to what was contained in the commission report.
The Sunday leader spoke to the Director, National Hospital Colombo , Dr.
Hector Weerasinghe he said that the strike is still continuing
and that the hospital has made arrangements for the patients, who
need blood tests, x rays and other tests to have them done at
private clinics and that the hospital will pay for these tests.
to the hospital have not been stopped and the hospital is doing all it
could to ease the suffering of the patients, he added.
do encounter a lot of problems but we are still running the hospital to
ensure patients are not put into inconvenience," Dr. Weerasinghe
told The Sunday Leader.
are given to the people through the Osu Sala branch
near the hospital and the bills will be paid by the hospital.
is nothing the hospital can do about this problem because this is
between the paramedic staff and the Ministry officials," he added.
drugs available in Sri Lanka
circulation of unregistered drugs in the local market has now become a
cause for concern, and the National Drugs
Authority says it plans to get tough on errant sellers.
such as Risperidone, Clomid and Bivalak spray, among others are
prescribed by doctors even though they haven't got the required
registration. While pharmacies and other drug selling outlets continue
to import such drugs and sell them in the open market the relevant
authorities are yet to file action against the culprits.
to prominent pharmacists these drugs are prescribed by doctors as they
are cheaper than some of the currently registered ones in the market.
With the opening of a new Indian hospital in Colombo the prescribing of
unregistered drugs has increased further," these pharmacists
though these drugs are equivalent to the original brand, these
pharmacists feel that such drugs should not be prescribed under
to The Sunday Leader a top official from the State Pharmaceutical
Corporation said he is aware of such drugs being sold in the market.
However he said the reason for them to be sold,
is due to the lack of proper
organisation in the drugs registration office, where approval of
a type of drug for registration takes one to two years.
a patient needs a drug he or she cannot wait for a year to be treated.
Therefore the only solution is to purchase unregistered drugs prescribed
though prescribing unregistered drugs and the purchase of such drugs is
an offence punishable with a
jail sentence, many patients continue to use them as they have no other
alternative," the official said.
a senior medical officer said that he was aware of unregistered drugs
being sold in the market. However he said continuous monitoring needs to
be done as even small shops tend to sell these drugs.
have sent food inspectors to each province and region and found that
unregistered drugs are sold regularly. We have to educate the public on
the dangerous usage of such drugs and in return get public support to
make sure these drugs are not sold in the market," the medical
rise in human smuggling
new latest study conducted by marine police reveal a sharp increase in
human smuggling from Sri Lanka.
Police OIC, M. Angunawala
says that most of the local
human smuggling rings - some of them underworld figures- are heavily
linked with international underworld activists as well.
most popular place these people go to is the Mediterranean region where
they can cross borders and seas to European countries, he pointed out.
route is a popular one among Sri Lankans, Bangladeshis and Indians. They
cross the Red Sea to get to other foreign destinations,"
marine police sources said.
of the numbers that try to resort to entering another country by illegal
means, many of them die on their way, either owing to starvation or
many of these human smugglers do
is to buy a boat for about Rs. 400, 000.
If they have around
150 people they will charge each of them about Rs. 550, 000 for the
journey. The trip would take around 22 days
after leaving Sri Lanka. The food is usually stored in the upper
decks of these boats. According
to our findings most of the
time these illegal immigrants are only given one meal a
day or just biscuits
to eat and many people have died owing to starvation. When the trawler
reaches its destination, the crew in charge then instruct
the passengers to
jump from the ship and swim to
the closest shore, for
survival," he said.
said the crew then destroys the ship by damaging the bottom part of it
and they either swim to the nearest port to get a flight back to
the island or they get into another ship and return to the country.
the recent detection of illegal immigrants trying to enter Italy, 41 of
them had died. Angunawala
says that the SPs for Gampaha and Negombo and the marine police are
together carrying out detection of illegal immigrants.
to the Immigration and Emigration
Department another popular
place these illegal immigrants go to is Australia.
country that detects illegal immigrants faces a major problem of how to
deal with them as
there are no laws laid down.
Sri Lanka the punishment is maybe one year's imprisonment or a suitable
punishment decided by the magistrate concerned," the police officer
grand-stand pavillion for Moratuwa Stadium
special project to construct a modern grand-stand pavilion at the
Moratuwa International Cricket Stadium to mark the completion of 25
uninterrupted years as a
parliamentarian by Foreign Minister Tyronne Fernando will be launched in
Moratuwa next Saturday (14).
part of the celebration, a grand musical fiesta titled 'Tyronne
Prashasthi - 25,' will be held at Prince of Wales College Grounds, Moratuwa from
6.30 p. m.
to 11.30 p.m. on December 14. The show will see the participation
of leading music artistes in
Sri Lanka backed by the band Sakura and the army band.
project is estimated to cost Rs. 10 million. The major part of the
funding is from overseas well-wishers,
Lankan expatriate workers, and from the local private sector,
consequent to an appeal made by Minister
Fernando is one of the few politicians who has the rare distinction of
organising, representing and holding an electorate continuously for
of EPF, ETF
Janatha Estates Development Board (JEDB) and the Sri Lanka State
Plantations Corporation (SLSPC)
has defaulted in paying ETF and EPF to its employees. According to
officials from the Labour Ministry the amount runs into several
Sunday Leader learns that the National Labour Advisory Council had
informed the labour minister who
in turn has directed the
commissioner of labour to go ahead with prosecution. Labour Ministry
officials said this is a violation of the country's law. "We will
not allow any company to get away by not paying EPF,
ETF to employees," they said.
picketing by the members of the Missing Persons' Guardian Association (MPGA)
crippled work at the Jaffna
District Secretariat, the main administrative centre in the Northern
Province for the fourth consecutive day, Wednesday.
MPGA members are demanding the
government expedite the investigation into the disappearance of hundreds
of youths after being arrested by the Sri Lankan government troops in
Jaffna peninsula in 1996 and 1997.
sources said the Government Agent S.Pathmanathan is scheduled to meet
the members of the MPGA to discuss
matters related to the continuance of the picketing. However, the
management of the MGPA said
it would continue the picketing campaign until a satisfactory reply is
received from the authorities concerned regarding their demand. Amnesty
International said in 1997 that as many as 600 people who
"disappeared" in the Jaffna peninsula after the Sri Lanka Army
moved into the area in 1996, "have died under torture or been
EPDP campaign continues
protest campaign by the villagers against the presence of para military
members of the Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP) in Nedunthivu
(Delft Island) in Jaffna continues. The protesters demand immediate
withdrawal of armed EPDP members from their village, sources said.
off to Vavuniya
Transport Ministry along with the Private Bus Owners Association will be
visiting Vavuniya over the weekend.
visit, The Sunday Leader learns is a sequel to a number of complaints
received from the public and other bus operators based in Vavuniya that
the LTTE is trying to introduce a tax system.
government delegation it is learnt will attempt to sort out this issue
by holding discussions with the relevant authorities and the public. The
delegation is also expected to meet LTTE officials, The Sunday Leader
30 year old man who was knocked down by a vehicle was given unusual
treatment by a leading private hospital in Colombo.
victim was initially taken to the Negombo Hospital but owing to the
strike carried out by the hospital staff, the patient had to be admitted
to a leading private hospital in Colombo.
The patient was
taken into the operating theatre by the surgeons who recommended an
immediate operation. He was then anasthasised for the surgery.
But after having sedated the patient the doctors had directed
that he be taken back to the ward.
following day, he was once again taken to the operating theatre and then
this time to his utter dismay he was told his leg had to be amputated.
The relatives of the victim say the doctors did not tell them about the
amputation after careful checking for
almost three days.
patient whose leg is now amputated is still warded at a great cost in the hospital.
asked to put her money where her mouth is
& Notary Public,
34/14, St. Sebastian Hill,
letter dated 11th November 2002 written on the instructions of your
client Her Excellency The President, Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumarathunga
to my client Mr. Lasantha Wickremathunga has been referred to me with
instructions to reply.
letter has been written on the basis that the statement referred to
therein reproduced hereinafter has been stated by my client is false and
defamatory of your client, you further state that it is defamatory by
innuendo in that it means and was understood from that your client being
the President of the Republic of Sri Lanka has abused SSP Jayantha
Jayasinghe in filth and threatened him with death.
statement read as follows:-
instructions are that my client did make the said statement and without
hesitation accepts it.
am further instructed by my client to state that the said statement is
true and correct and has been made for the public benefit.
am further instructed that my client had qualified privilege when making
the said statement.
any event and without prejudice to the aforesaid I have been instructed
by my client to state that your client is not entitled to any sum of
money whatever as the said statement is true and correct and as the same
has been made for the public benefit.
the aforesaid circumstances your demand on behalf of your client is
rejected. Upon the expiry of the fourteen days period set out in your
letter, my client expects your client to institute legal action against
my client. Thus my client welcomes your clientOs instructions to you to
institute legal proceedings against my client.
client looks forward to such action before the end of this month as
indicated in your letter.
client will not seek any time but will file answer on the earliest
addition my client will counter sue your client for a sum of Rs. 1,000
million being the damage suffered by my client consequent to the several
defamatory statements made by your client Her Excellency The President,
Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumarathunga and in particular the following:-