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Speaker expresses gratitude to Japan for timely assistance

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Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena expressed gratitude to the Government of Japan for providing a Rs. 1,360 million grant for the provisioning of necessary medical equipment such as MRI Scanner, CT scanner, bed-side X-Ray systems and central monitors to strengthen the COVID-19 preventing activities in Sri Lanka, Parliament media division said yesterday.

The Speaker also thanked the government of Japan for providing USD 3 million through UNICEF to support the cold chain system in Sri Lanka and strengthen delivery of Immunisation services in response to the COVID -19 pandemic.

Speaker Abeywardena said this while making the welcome speech at the revival meeting of the Japan-Sri Lankan Parliamentary Friendship Association for the ninth Parliament held recently in Parliament. The meeting was held under the patronage of Speaker Abeywardena, Ambassador of Japan in Sri Lanka Akira Sugiyama and Secretary General of Parliament Dhammika Dasanayake and was attended by Ministers, State Ministers and Members of Parliament.

The Speaker further said that “the Bilateral relations between the two countries in the early days have mainly been in the religious and cultural spheres. These traditional bonds were developed into more valued political and economic ties in the latter half of the last century.”

“Sri Lanka was one of the nine Asian countries that participated in the San Francisco Peace Conference in Japan which was held in September 1951. Then Finance Minister, J R Jayewardene’s speech on behalf of the GOSL at the conference urging the participating countries to accept Japan into the comity of nations without any reparation in the spirit of the Buddha’s teaching continues to be deeply appreciated by Japan.”

“As we all are well aware that, Sri Lanka and Japan established Diplomatic Relations shortly after the signing of the Peace Treaty in April 1952. A Japanese mission was set up in Colombo in February 1952 and in May 1953 Sri Lanka established a Legation in Tokyo. This month (April, 2021) marks the 69th anniversary of celebration diplomatic relations between the two countries.

“Since 1993, delegations from both the Parliamentary Friendship Associations paid reciprocal visits. Apart from the visits of the Members of the Parliamentary Friendship Associations there were many high-profile bilateral visits that were undertaken by the Leaders of both the countries and Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister’s visit in September 2014 to Sri Lanka is a significant milestone in this context.”

“Excellency and dear Members, I strongly believe that we Parliamentarians, representatives of the people have the ability to promote our interests through the interaction of the Parliamentary Friendship Groups. Thus hope this meeting will also contribute to further strengthen the relations between the two countries and the Legislatures.”

At this meeting, Minister of Plantation Dr. Ramesh Pathirana, was elected as the new President of the Sri Lanka-Japan Parliamentary Friendship Association.

MP Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, was elected as the new Secretary and MPs Selvarajah Gajendren, J. C. Alawathuwala, and Premnath C. Dolawatte, were elected as the Vice Presidents.

MP Ajith Rajapakse was elected the Treasurer and MPs Sivagnanam Shritharan and Major Sudarshana Denipitiya, as Assistant Secretaries.

 

 



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Future of Sri Lanka will be determined by the economic policies implemented over the next five years – President

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe emphasized that the future of Sri Lanka will be determined by the economic policies implemented over the next five years.

The President delivered this statement while addressing the youth and business community in Mannar during his participation in the “Youth Conference” held on  Sunday (16).

The President initially attended the Mannar District “Youth Conference” held at the Conference Hall in Mannar Town Hall. The conference, themed “Journey for a Bright Future,” included an award ceremony where the President presented certificates and cash prizes to students who excelled in the 2023/2024 G.C.E Advanced Level Examination.

President Wickremesinghe interacted directly with the youth, addressing their questions and providing positive responses.  He explained that over the past four years, job creation was hindered by the COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis and he assured the audience that the upcoming economic program would create new job opportunities for those previously unable to secure employment.

The President emphasized that it is up to the youth to decide whether they wish to advance their own future and contribute to the country through the government’s program.

[PMD]

 

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President assures that persons on pilgrimage to Madhu will not be hindered

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Addressing the Mannar District Development Committee meeting held at the Mannar District Secretariat on Sunday (16), President Ranil Wickremesinghe said  that it is unfair to arrest and fine pilgrims on their way to sacred sites like Madhu Church and Sri Pada.and assured that pilgrims visiting  Madhu Church will be provided with all necessary facilities to engage in their pilgrimage activities without any hindrance.

He instructed that if pilgrims are arrested in the future, the President’s Office should be informed immediately.

During the meeting, the President directed the Sri Lanka Army to clean and develop both sides of the existing Madhu Road for the convenience of the pilgrims visiting Madhu Church. He also said that a representative of the Bishop of Mannar, the Department of Forest Conservation, the Road Development Authority and the Sri Lanka Police should coordinate to ensure that these tasks are completed before the upcoming annual festival of the church of Our Lady of Madhu.

The DDC meeting, which focused on the future development plans for the Mannar district was attended by Political representatives and government officials.

 

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Abandon selfishness and embrace a life of sacrifice and harmony to achieve spiritual and worldly success – President

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe, in his Hajj message emphasizes that to achieve spiritual and worldly success, individuals must abandon selfishness and embrace a life of sacrifice and harmony. It is with this noble aim in mind that Muslims celebrate the Hajj festival each year.

On this occasion, Muslims from around the globe gather at a single place of worship, united in purpose, to pray for communal values that embody the hope of humanity. The Hajj celebration fosters feelings of equality and brotherhood among all people, delivering a profound message for world peace.

I extend my heartfelt wishes to the entire Muslim community in Sri Lanka and around the world for a meaningful Hajj celebration, where everyone comes together to fulfill the aspirations of humanity.

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