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JVP announces support for Church’s demand for full justice 

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The JVP on Friday announced that they would fully support the Church’s campaign to have justice served for the Easter Sunday victims.

Addressing the media at the JVP headquarters in Pelawatte on Friday (20), JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva said that everybody who valued justice had a right to know the truth behind the Easter Sunday terror attacks.

 “This is not an issue limited only to the Catholic people, and all of us have a right to know the truth. Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith has called for a protest on the 21st day of every month until the government comes up with the truth. We have decided to support that call,” he said.

Silva said that 28 months had elapsed since the terror attacks but the government had failed to identify the real culprits. “Gotabaya Rajapaksa and his team made use of the terror attacks to garner votes for their party promising people justice. The President, who ruled the country when the attack took place, is now a member of incumbent government. The investigations do not progress and the government, from time to time, makes lukewarm statements. Where is the justice that they promised to people?

“The former government should take the responsibility for not preventing the terror attacks. The incumbent should take the responsibility for not investigating the matter. The government for its political survival is marking the time without punishing the real culprits,” Silva said.

Operational Committee Member of the National People’s Power, Aruna Shantha Nonis, said that the Catholic Church had rejected every report furnished by the government on the Easter Sunday carnage by pointing out various lapses in them. Those reports had selectively addressed the issue and left out many important points and had limited themselves to naming some of those responsible.

“There is a serious doubt on the government’s conduct in this affair. It seems the government wants to protect some of the culprits. Who are the culprits that our intelligence units fail to identify? Or is it that our intelligence units cannot find the real culprits responsible for the Easter Sunday terror attacks,” he queried.

Prof Chrishantha Abeysena said that the government had succumbed to the pressures of deal politics and it could not deliver justice to the victims and their family members. “We have information that many policemen who are responsible for not preventing the terror attacks have been granted promotions. Where in the world such officers under a cloud get promotions,” Prof Abeysena queried.



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President requests the opposition to support the implementation of the IMF agreement

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe urged the Opposition to unite and disregard political differences to assist in carrying out the IMF agreement, which would aid in the development of Sri Lanka’s economy.

The President emphasized that his duty is not to condemn previous administrations but to concentrate on the development of the country. He also declared his dedication to constructing a better future by creating laws and frameworks that prevent the recurrence of past errors.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe delivered this message in a special address to Parliament this morning (22) regarding the receipt of the Extended Credit Facility from the International Monetary Fund.

He stated that despite allegations being leveled against him that his objective was not to rescue the country from an economic crisis but to safeguard the Rajapaksa family, the international community had acknowledged his efforts to carry the country across the economic vine bridge.

The President further said that he had faith in rebuilding the beloved country where he was born, brought up and educated, and said that many past experiences were the reasons for confirming that faith.

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SJB, JVP move SC against Finance Secy. for contempt of court

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The main Opposition, Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB), and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) yesterday (21) moved Supreme Court against Treasury Secretary Mahinda Siriwardana over his failure to provide funds required by the Election Commission to conduct the Local Government polls, ignoring an interim order issued by the apex court, on 03 March.

Ranjith Madduma Bandara, MP, is the petitioner for the SJB and Vijitha Herath, MP, moved court on behalf of the JVP, the leading party in the Jathika Jana Balawegaya (JJB).

Two Opposition parties declared action against Siriwardana the day after the Freedom People’s Alliance (FPA) issued a seven-day ultimatum to the Finance Secretary to release the funds.

EC Chairman Nimal Punchihewa is on record as having said that in spite of SC directive he didn’t receive fresh funding.

The petitioners sought the issuance of summons on Siriwardana for contempt of court over failure to carry out its interim orders, given on 03 March.

The petitioners want the Finance Secretary punished in terms of Article 105 (3) of the Constitution.

The SJB stated that Siriwardana had refrained from carrying out the March directives, on the basis of a Cabinet decision, taken on 13 Feb., 2023. The SJB also pointed out that the offensive conduct of the Treasury Secretary, inter alia, causes grave prejudice to the esteemed authority of the Supreme Court and in turn disturb the public confidence in the authority of the highest Court in the country. (SF)

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Minister indicates reduction in fuel prices in April

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Power and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekara told Parliament yesterday that fuel prices would be reduced considerably according to the fuel price formula at the next fuel price revision, due in April.

The Minister said that the government would be able to procure fuel shipments, at lower prices, during competitive bidding, with the receipt of the IMF bailout.

There had been practical issues, and problems, in opening Letters of Credit, and obtaining credit facilities, in the recent past, as Sri Lanka could not give a guarantee to fuel suppliers, Minister Wijesekara said.

“We could not open LCs and obtain credit facilities when procuring fuel. After the IMF bailout, we will be able to procure fuel at lower prices during competitive biddings. We will be able to obtain a long-term credit facility as well. Fuel prices in the global market seem to have declined and the rupee has also gained strength against the US Dollar. Having considered all these factors, fuel prices will be reduced by a considerable margin which could be felt by the people,” he said.

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