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Ministry of Power and UNDP to convene Colombo Development Dialogues on Green Development

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The Decade of Action for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) demands the mobilization of everyone everywhere, grounded on a level of ambition that supercharges ideas into concrete, bold and implementable solutions. Thus, we need to renew our determination to enact a multilateral response that gears green recovery efforts through multi-stakeholder partnerships.

Noting the importance of mainstreaming and contributing to the policy discourse on green development in Sri Lanka, the Ministry of Power and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Sri Lanka, together with interested stakeholders, will convene the Colombo Development Dialogue series on Green Development.

This will be convened following UNDP’s Global Human Development Report, which was launched earlier this year, titled “The Next Frontier: Human Development and the Anthropocene”; which argued that a great transformation is needed to survive in the next stage of human progress.

Thus, this series of policy dialogues aim to contribute to shape the national green development agenda and support the establishment of a national multi-stakeholder platform to promote and support ongoing initiatives on green development. Importantly, the platform will identify intersections between the proposed policy dialogue series and its contribution to the work of the Presidential Task Force on Creating a Green Sri Lanka with Sustainable Solutions to Climate Change.

To this end, the First Task Team Meeting of the Colombo Development Dialogue on Green Development was held on June 30, 2021, chaired by Minister of Power Dullas Alahapperuma and Ms. Wasantha Perera, Secretary to the Ministry of Power, together with Ms. Faiza Effendi, Officer in Charge, UNDP in Sri Lanka.

Government representatives from relevant ministries and departments such as the Ministries of Energy, Environment, Health, Transport, Agriculture, Fisheries, Plantation, Sustainable Development Council, and the Department of National Planning, were also present at the meeting. Alongside them were representatives from development partners including the Asian Development Bank, World Bank, International Finance Cooperation, Delegation of the European Union to Sri Lanka and the Maldives, and the British High Commission in Colombo. Key private sector stakeholders were also present at the virtual meeting with representatives from the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Biodiversity Sri Lanka and the UN Global Compact Network Sri Lanka.

 The Colombo Development Dialogues is UNDP Sri Lanka’s flagship policy engagement platform and the proposed series on Green Development is expected to kickstart in August 2021.



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Shocking 17,500 video clips of Lankan children being sexually abused

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By Norman Palihawadane

There were over 17,500 video clips of Sri Lankan children being sexually abused, on the Internet and action had been taken to arrest those responsible, Police Spokesman Senior DIG Ajith Rohana said yesterday. The Sri Lanka Police had sought the assistance of international law enforcement agencies and the Internet service providers to track down the persons involved in uploading those video clips and child sex trafficking via internet, the SDIG said.

Crimes against children in Sri Lanka were rising at an alarming speed, the SDIG said.

The police would conduct a special awareness programme together with the National Child Protection Authority to curb the alarming trend, he said.

The first programme was held recently in Nuwara Eliya where it especially focused apprising police officers attached to that Division.

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Private buses to insist that inter-provincial commuters carry proof of vaccination?

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By Rathindra Kuruwita

A limited number of Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) and National Transport Commission (NTC) buses and trains would maintain limited inter- provincial operation from 01 August, State Minister of Transport, Dilum Amunugma said.

The State Minister said that certified documents issued by the respective depot superintendents and the letters of approval by the NTC were mandatory, he added.

“The buses and trains will be permitted to operate only in the morning and in the evening for office workers,” Amunugma said.

The State Minister added that passengers should behave responsibly when using the inter-provincial transport services and understand that those services were only for commuters engaged in essential services.

“The Delta variant is spreading rapidly. If one infected passenger travels in a bus, all other commuters will contract it” he warned.

The Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association (LPBOA) has decided to make proof of vaccination compulsory for inter provincial travel from 01 August

LPBOA President Gemunu Wijeratne said they had written to the President and Transport Minister asking for permission to enforce it.

Wijeratne said that all bus operators in the Western Province should ensure they were inoculated by August 15.

 

 

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TNA Leader complains against appointing Sinhala officers to Tamil areas

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By Dinasena Ratugamage

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Leader, R. Sampanthan had written to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister, Mahinda Rajapaksa, objecting to the appointment of Sinhala government officers to the Northern Province, former TNA MP Mavai Senathirajah told journalists on Wednesday (28.)

The President and the Prime Minister are appointing officials violating democratic principles, Senathirajah said after a meeting of party activists at Karachchi Divisional Secretariat Office, Kilinochchi.

“A lot of Sinhalese are appointed to the North and the East. They must appoint Tamils. These appointments undermine our struggle for a just language policy,” he said.

Senathirajah said that it was customary to appoint Tamil officers to Tamil majority areas. However, this tradition was being violated increasingly in recent times, the former MP said.

“The TNA has nothing against Sinhala government officers. However, appointing Sinhala state officers to majority Tamil areas is a great injustice to the people. So, our leader has written to the President and the Prime Minister asking them to stop this practice,” he said.

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