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JVP: Govt. ready to sell Colombo East Terminal to India

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JVP-led NPP Kalutara District candidate Dr. Nalinda Jayatissa flanked by NPP’s Colombo District candidate Attorney-at-Law Harshana Nanayakkara and Gampaha District candidate Lanka Rasadari Siriwardena addressing media yesterday.

By Saman Indrajith

All arrangements have been made to sell the East Container Terminal of the Colombo South Harbour to India, the JVP alleges.

Addressing the media at the JVP party headquarters in Pelawatte, JVP-led NPP Kalutara District candidate Dr. Nalinda Jayatissa said: “The Colombo harbour has been ranked 27th in the world in terms of efficiency. As per the statistics of the Sri Lanka Ports Authority Colombo port could generate a revenue of Rs. 500,000 million a year. If the ECT of Colombo harbour is handed over to India we will be left with nothing. What will happen to the port workers? They have already launched a hunger strike; the government says nothing. We call upon the President and the Prime Minister to abrogate the agreement to sell ECT to India.

“Today, the UNP has become the main acolyte of the SLPP. The UNP government sold off 49 percent of the East Terminal. Now, this government is planning to sell off the rest. Both the SJB and the UNP are going around the country asking the people to vote for the SLPP if they do not vote for them.”

“All income generating ventures in this country have been sold or are in the process of being divested. It was those ventures which pumped funds to maintain welfare programmes such as free education and free healthcare. Once they are turned into private enterprises, how will we be able to raise funds for welfare?”

NPP Colombo District candidate Attorney-at-Law Harshana Nanayakkara and Gampaha District candidate Lanka Rasadari Siriwardena also addressed the press.

 

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Murder convicted SLPP candidate not allowed to vote

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The murder convicted SLPP Ratnapura district candidate Premalal Jayasekera, who was sentenced to death over a killing in Kahawatte during the Presidential Election in 2015, was not allowed to vote at Aug.5 general election, CaFFE Executive Director Manas Makeen said.

Although Jayasekera was sentenced to death there was speculation that he would be allowed to vote. The shooting took place on Jan 05, 2015 and caused the death of a supporter of then Opposition presidential candidate Maithripala Sirisena.

The UNP supporter, who was engaged in decorating a stage, was fatally wounded in the shooting and succumbed to his injuries in hospital on January 8.

The Pelmadulla Magistrate issued arrest warrants on the suspects involved.

Former Deputy Minister Jayasekara was arrested on January 10 that year over the election-related shooting incident while he had been released on bail on December 07, 2015.

Former Sabaragamuwa Provincial Councilor Nilantha Jayakody and former Kahawatte Pradeshiya Sabha chairman Vajira Darshana were also arrested over the shooting.

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Over 70 per cent turnout

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The overall voter turnout at yesterday’s general election was over 70%, according to election officials and monitors.

The overall turnout at the Vanni Electoral District was 74%, district returning officer S.M. Saman Bandulasena said. The Vanni Electoral District comprises of Mullaitivu (74%) Vavuniya (74%) and Mannar (76%) administrative districts

The turnout in other districts were: Galle 70%, Matale 72%, Nuwara Eliya 75%, Ratnapura 71%, Puttalam 64%, Kandy 72%, Polonnaruwa 72%, Hambantota 76%, Anuradhapura 70%, Matara 71%, Batticaloa 76%, Kalutara 70%, Trincomalee 73%, Digamadulla 72%, Kurunegala 65%, Kegalle 70%, Gampaha 68%, Colombo 70%, Badulla 74%, Jaffna 67% and Moneragala 75%.

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Mangala prepares to launch new movement

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…support for LGBTQ assured

Former Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera plans to launch a combined political-civil society campaign tomorrow against the authoritarian rule.
In a statement issued yesterday (5), Samaraweera, who quit the electoral contest after obtaining nominations from the Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB) a few weeks before the polls, emphasized the need for re-commitment to democracy as the country hurled towards an autocracy with the rapid convergence of the executive, the military and the clergy; the legislature and the judiciary are being turned into mere rubber seals of the executive President.

Mangala Samaraweera

The former minister addressed lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights among other issues amidst indications the SLPP could comfortably form the next government. Samaraweera said: “The LGBTQ movement must be supported and encouraged in their struggle to do away with archaic Victorian laws governing same sex relationships between consenting adults. All human beings – irrespective of sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, caste or religion should be treated as equal and diversity must be celebrated in all its manifestations.”

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