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Sri Lanka Cricket invests 60 million rupees to provide ‘Ground Equipment’ for 14 of its member clubs.

Sri Lanka Cricket has invested 60 million rupees to provide ‘Ground Equipment’ for 14 of its member clubs. The project, which is conducted by the National Development Center of Sri Lanka Cricket provided ground equipment for 10 ‘Tier A clubs’ and 5 ‘Tier B clubs’.

Five clubs, namely; SSC, NCC, Bloomfield, Tamil Union and CCC have been given Two-ton Double Drum Rollers, each. The rest, will be given the Two-ton Double Drum Rollers, within the next few weeks.

In addition, Sri Lanka Cricket will also provide Pitch Covers for all the 14 clubs

The SLFP points out that the Supreme Court determination regarding the term of office of the incumbent President, portrays that the country is served by an independent judiciary.

The Sri Lanka Freedom Party says that President Maithripala Sirisena sought the Supreme Court determination regarding his term of office because of the many development projects that need to be executed during his tenure. Speaking at a media briefing today, the party’s deputy secretary Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said that since two interpretations surfaced regarding the term of office of the incumbent president, a Supreme Court determination was sought to douse any confusion. The minister pointed out that the president did not seek the opinion of the Supreme Court with the intention of clinging to power for six years. He placed emphasis on the fact that President Maithripala Sirisena renounced many of the executive powers that were centered around the executive presidency, with the enactment of the 19th amendment to the constitution. He observed that the Supreme Court decision portrays that the country is served by an independent judiciary.

‘The March 12th Movement’ says, should contestants who have violated election laws get elected as people’s representatives, legal action will be taken to nullify their appointments.

‘The March 12th Movement’ says that should contestants who have been accused of violating election laws, contest the election and get elected as people’s representatives, legal action will be taken to nullify the appointments of such unworthy contestants. Speaking at a media briefing held in Colombo today, Convener of the Movement Rohana Hettiarachchi said it has been observed that over 50 contestants who are accused of various offences are contesting the forthcoming polls.

The Kankasanthurai Harbour to be upgraded as a ‘Commercial Port’.

The Government of India has come forward to rehabilitate and upgrade the Kankesanthurai Harbour, into a ‘Commercial Port’, at a cost of 45.27 million US dollars. The Ministry of Finance says, this will help to further strengthen the country’s effort to become a regional maritime hub, in the near future.

During the last few years Indian foreign direct investment in Sri Lanka has expanded exceptionally. Presently Indian development assistance mainly focuses on the improvement of economic infrastructural facilities, livelihood development, education, healthcare, capacity building and the economic renewal of Sri Lanka.

The Ministry of Ports and Shipping has observed that the rehabilitation of the Kankesanthurai Harbour would contribute to promote traditional commercial linkages and give an incentive to economic activities, by encouraging trade in northern Sri Lanka.

Kankesanthurai will be the nearest port for all eastern ports in India, as well as for Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Deal Finalized - Rohingya repatriation to be completed within 2 years

Bangladesh and Myanmar today finalized the text of the Physical Arrangement which will facilitate the return of Rohingyas to Myanmar. The Physical Arrangement stipulates that the Repatriation Process would be completed, preferably within two years, from the commencement of repatriation. The decision was taken at the first meeting of the Joint Working Group, on the return of the displaced Rohingyas from the Rakhine State. Modalities for the repatriation of orphans and children born out of unwarranted incidence have been incorporated in the said arrangement.

Venezuela helicopter attack: Pilot Oscar Pérez in bloody siege

Officials say that two police officers and several "terrorists" have been killed in an operation to capture a helicopter pilot accused of leading an armed rebellion in Venezuela last year, . Venezuelan forces surrounded a house in the town of El Junquito, near the capital, Caracas, as they targeted the "cell" linked to pilot Oscar Pérez.


Minister Thalatha Athukorala says the judicial system during the previous regime was under pressure.

Minister Thalatha Athukorala says the judicial system during the previous regime was under pressure. The Minister also stated few external elements exerted unnecessary pressure on the judicial system during the previous regime, which prevail for ten years.


JVP emphasizes the importance of electing corruption free honest representatives for local government organizations in the forthcoming LG polls.

JVP emphasizes the importance of electing corruption free honest representatives for local government organizations in the forthcoming LG polls. The General Secretary of JVP Tylvin Silva said this time the election campaign does not have any competition between the candidates because the new system has eliminated the preferential vote method.


The supreme court informs that the president’s term is 5 years.

The Supreme Court has communicated to the Presidential Secretariat that President Maithripala Sirisena’s term was only five years, according to the media release issued by the President’s Media Division today. Last week the President had made a reference to the Supreme Court seeking its opinion whether he could serve up to six years.
The five-member bench of the Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that the President’s term was restricted only to five years.
The bench headed by Chief Justice Priyasath Dep,communicated its opinion to the Presidential Secretariat yesterday.

All measures have been finalized to hold the independence day celebrations in grand manner.

The government is getting ready to hold the 70th independence day in a grand manner on the 4th February.. The ministry of Home Affairs says, all arrangements have been finalized to celebrate the 70th independence day at the Galle Face Green under the theme of “a single nation”. According to the ministry chief guest of the ceremony will be Prince Edward in Britain representing queen Elizabeth. Several more world leaders have already confirmed their presence in this ceremony. The celebrations will be held under the patronage of president Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremassinghe. In line with the independence day a cultural show will be held at the Colombo municipal council grounds on the same evening.

The police destroys a stock of cocaine in public.

Initial steps were taken at Katunayake in the presence of President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe to prepare 928 kilograms of cocaine in custody to be destroyed this morning. Then the liquefied cocaine will be destroyed in Puttalam this evening. The Police Headquarters say , this process will be carried out totally echo-friendly manner.

The World Economic Forum is to organize an investment round table in Sri Lanka.

Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade Malik Samarawickrama during a two day visit to Geneva recently met with Mr. Børge Brende, President of the World Economic Forum and senior officials engaged in areas relating to Sri Lanka.
The visit of the Minister took place as a continuation of Sri Lanka’s engagement with the Forum facilitated by the Sri Lanka’s Permanent Mission in Geneva, on the eve of the 2018 Davos Summit, which will take place from 23-27 January 2018, where the WEF Annual Programme takes place. During the meetings on 4-5 January, the two parties agreed to explore the possibility of hosting an 'Investment Round Table' in Sri Lanka in the near future.

China Merchant Port Holdings makes a second payment of 97.365 million US dollars to Sri Lanka Ports Authority


China Merchant Port Holdings has made a payment of 97.365 million US dollars to the Sri Lanka Ports Authority as the second tranche of its investment in the Public-Private Partnership on Hambantota port development. Commercial activities of the port were handed over to the Chinese company in December 2017. A first tranche of 292 million US dollars was paid previously. With the second payment, China Merchant Port Holdings has paid 389.462 million US dollars to date. The final payment is scheduled to be paid within the next five months. Ports Authority Chairman Parakrama Dissanayake said CMPort’s investment could be described as a credible vote of confidence in its potential as well as in the economy of Sri Lanka.

The Sri Lankan Finance Minister meets with Indian Foreign and Finance Ministers


Minister of Finance and Media, Mangala Samaraweera called on the Indian Minister of External Affairs, Sushma Swaraj at the Jawaharlal Nehru Bhawan in New Delhi yesterday. The two Ministers discussed issues of development cooperation between the two countries. Minister Samaraweera also met with India’s Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and reviewed the present status of ongoing economic projects between the two countries

A three billion rupee funding for the construction of model villages in the Northern and Eastern provinces.

The construction of model villages in the Northern and Eastern provinces this year will be given a funding of three billion rupees. The Ministry of Housing and Construction says this is being undertaken under the “Shelter for All” National Housing Development Programme. Chairman of the National Housing Development Authority S.L. Palansuriya said 125 model villages would be constructed in the Northern Province. He said a sum of ten billion rupees has been set aside this year for housing development this year.

Sri Lanka secures victory over Ireland in a match of the ICC Under 19 World Cup


Sri Lanka posted a seven wicket victory over Ireland in a match of the ICC Under 19 World Cup at Whangarei in New Zealand. Batting first Ireland made 207 for six, with J. Grassi scoring 75. In bowling, skipper Kavindu Mendis captured three wickets for 35 runs. Sri Lanka reached 208 for the loss of only three wickets off 37.3 overs to seal the match. Dhananjaya Lakshan made an unbeaten 101, and skipper Mendis also shone with the bat with an unbeaten 74.

Hindus world over celebrates Thai Pongal festival today

Hindus world over celebrates Thai Pongal festival today. Pongal is a harvest festival dedicated to the Sun God.

Thai Pongal is one of the most important festivals celebrated by Tamil people in Sri Lanka. The day marks the start of the sun's six-month-long journey northwards. Thai Pongal is mainly celebrated to convey appreciation to the Sun God for a successful harvest. Part of the celebration is the boiling of the first rice of the season consecrated to the Sun - the Surya Maangalyam.

Issuing a message for the Thai Pongal day President Maitripala Sirisena says marking this year’s Thai Pongal as an occasion to make the efforts taken by the government to take the country towards self-sufficiency in food meaningful and providing strength to these efforts. He extended his greetings to all Hindus across the world celebrating the festival that expresses gratitude to nature.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe says that Thai Pongal is a time to reflect on our respect for nature and is an opportunity to share fellowship as an equal society. In his Thai Pongal message to the nation, the Premier stated that this festival commemorating harvest is also an occasion to be thankful to nature for its bountiful supply. He requests all communities to join hands disregarding all types of differences to buildup a prosperous country.

The President says the new presidential commission to investigate into the frauds and malpractices committed in Mihin Air and Sri Lankan Airlines will be appointed next week


President Maithripala Sirisena says that he will appoint the new presidential commission next week to investigate into the frauds and malpractices committed in Mihin Air and Sri Lankan Airlines. Then the people of the country will understand the reality of the so-called development conducted by the previous regime. The president made these remarks addressing a public rally held in Dambulla this evening. It was held to ensure the victory of the UPFA candidates who contest for the upcoming LG polls.
The President further said that he will win the challenge of eliminating corrupted politics from the country overcoming any type of difficulty. The former president had managed to pass the 18th amendment to the constitution in the parliament to stay in power for lifetime. The President said that he is the one who repealed the despotic constitution and brought the people friendly 19th amendment. The President further said that he is the only leader who handed over the excessive power of the executive to the parliament. Under the previous regime it was the president who had the power to appoint IGP, attorney general and Supreme Court judges. However, that system was changed and the power of appointing top posts of the government was vested with the constitutional council in parliament.

The President noted that he has taken a number of measures to strengthen democracy law and order in the country. President Sirisena stressed that he will create a set of councilors appointed from the SLFP to work in local government bodies according to their conscience. The President further said that the special economics center in Dambulla will be developed with proper management and will be made a center free of frauds and corruption.

The national programme to create 10,000 young entrepreneurs will begin in March


Chairman of the National Youth Services council Eranda Weliangege says that the programme to create 10,000 young entrepreneurs will be implemented in March this year. The council will provide necessary training and technical assistance to the young entrepreneurs to develop their ventures. It is expected to create at least two employment opportunities under each young entrepreneur.
Participating in a programme over the SLBC this morning, Mr. Weliangege said follow up programmes will also be carried out to review the progress of the ventures started by the young entrepreneurs. The government has allocated a sum of 2000 million rupees for youth development this year. He thanked the Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe for introducing the concept of youth services council as a young politician about three decades ago.

Measures have been taken to provide relief to the families affected by heavy winds gushed in Gampaha district, yesterday


Strong winds that developed into a storm ravaged several areas within Gampaha yesterday, causing severe damage to over 300 houses in the area.

Very strong winds gushed the areas last evening in Walpita, Katukirinda and several other areas. Our correspondents say that many houses in the area have been damaged by the winds and falling trees and debris. Deputy Director of the Disaster Management center Ravi Jayaratna says granting relief for the affected people is now afoot. Media spokesman of the Ceylon electricity Board says that additional workers have been deployed to repair the damaged power supply.

Meanwhile, the national insurance trust fund has deployed 12 teams to estimate the damages to grant insurance compensations for the victims.

32,000 students GCE A/level qualified students have applied for Colleges of education, this year

The Ministry of Education says about 32,000 students who have passed GCE A/level Examination have applied for Colleges of education, this year. Chief Commissioner of Teacher education K M S Bandara told the SLBC that new enrollments will be made in March. Many students have applied for the fields of Information Technology and Primary Education. The Ministry has increased the monthly allowance of 3500/ rupees paid for the teacher trainee students upto 5000 rupees from this month.

About 8500 students are undergoing training in 19 colleges of education, islandwide at present.

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