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KNDU among issues Sirisena and FSP discuss in Colombo

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SLFP position on ‘militarisation of education’ to be revealed shortly

By Rathindra Kuruwita

The SLFP would hold further discussions with the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP) on the issues faced by the people, a SLFP spokesperson told The Island yesterday.

This followed a discussion between the two parties yesterday at former President and SLFP leader, Maithripala Sirisena’s house in Colombo 07. Sirisena had represented the SLFP, party General Secretary Dayasiri Jayasekera said.

Education Secretary of the FSP, Pubudu Jayagoda said that the discussion had been fruitful as there was agreement about certain important issues.

“There was agreement about the teachers’ struggle, the shortage of fertiliser and other issues faced by the farmers, how the economic downturn was affecting the poor segments, free education and the militarisation of education,” Jayagoda said.

The former president told the FSP delegation that the party had appointed a committee to investigate the Kotelawala National Defence University Bill and they were to receive the recommendations of the report today (02). Based on the report, the SLFP would announce its stance on the Bill.

“We agreed to meet again. While there are differences in how the two parties look at a problem and solution, there are points of agreement on important issues. We will soon meet the JVP and the TNA as well to discuss the issues that face the country. We had fruitful discussions with the LSSP and the Communist Party, too, recently,” Jayagoda said.

 

 



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Central Bank urged to save collapsing local industries

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The National Freedom Front (NFF) has requested the immediate intervention of the Governor of the Central Bank Ajith Nivard Cabraal to save micro, small and medium scale industries badly affected by the current economic downturn caused by the Covid-19.

The NFF parliamentary group comprises six members, including one National List.

Industries Minister Wimal Weerawansa, on behalf of the SLPP constituent parties, has warned of steep increase in unemployment, drop in the contribution made by small and medium scale industries to the national economy and the further widening of the gap between the rich and poor.

Party sources told The Island that the NFF had decided to take up the urgent matter because, in spite of repeated promises, those who had been severely affected were yet to receive assistance. Minister Weerawansa has urged the Central Bank to restructure loans obtained by affected industries and also extend the moratorium.

Weerawansa has in a letter dated Oct.18, told Cabraal that according to a survey conducted by the Industrial Development Board, micro, small and medium enterprises suffered serious setbacks. However, of the loans made available through the banking sector, a substantial segment had been disbursed among major players, the Minister said, while pointing out that in other countries in the region more than 50 percent of total loans were made available to micro, small and medium industries.

Unfortunately, here in Sri Lanka they received approximately 15 percent of the total given as loans, the minister said.

Minister Weerawansa said that though industries suffered, almost all state and private banks had recorded much improved performances with significant profits.

The Minister said that following his intervention with the cabinet of ministers, the government agreed on a plan of action to deal with the situation. It would be the responsibility of the Central Bank to implement the agreed proposals, he said.

(SF)

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So far no side effects among Pfizer vaccinated 15,000 A/L students

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By Rathindra Kuruwita

Over 15,000 GCE AL students had been vaccinated with Pfizer and there had not been any side effects, Colombo District Director of Health Dr. Dilip Liyanage told the media yesterday.

He said that the Ministry of Education had given them a list of 20,688 that needed to be vaccinated.

“We would like to assure parents that there is no need to worry. Over 15,000 children have been vaccinated and there have been no problems so far. Trust the health professionals and vaccinate your child at the first opportunity you get,” he said.

Dr. Liyanage added that children who missed their chance to get vaccinated on weekdays, can get vaccinated at the MOH office near their home.

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Govt. approves prohibition of cattle slaughter

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The government has approved the prohibition of cattle slaughter. The decision was announced at the weekly Cabinet meeting at the Information Department yesterday (19). The government said the relevant laws and regulations, including those passed by Local Government authorities would be amended for that purpse.

The Legal Draftsman has drafted Bills to amend the following acts and ordinances.

• Authority 272 of the Cattle Slaughter Ordinance No. 9 of 1893

• Act No. 29 of 1958 Concerning Animals

• Municipal Councils Ordinance – Section 252

• Section 255 of the Municipal Councils Ordinance

• Ordinance No. 15 of the Urban Council Act of 1987

The Attorney General has certified that the said Bills do not clash with the provisions of the Constitution.

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