Connect with us

News

US funded fortified rice shipments begin arriving at Colombo Port

Published

on

According to a Crop and Food Security Assessment Mission report by U.N.’s World Food Programme (WFP) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation, nearly 30 percent of the Sri Lankan population is currently facing food insecurity. Through ongoing initiatives, as well as new funding and food shipments, the United States is working with the Government of Sri Lanka, the WFP, and other partners, to address these needs. An initial shipment of 600 metric tons of fortified rice, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), arrived in Sri Lanka, last week, to support the Government of Sri Lanka’s national school meal programme.

The shipment is part of a larger food assistance initiative by USAID and WFP that includes 3,950 metric tons of fortified rice, 768 metric tons of red lentils, 1,188 metric tons of soya, and a planned 2,310 metric tons of maize. This assistance will help provide school meals and nutritional supplements for 1.7 million children as well as 300,000 pregnant and lactating mothers.

“US-SL relations celebrate 75 years this year, and ours has been a story of friendship and partnership,” said U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka Julie Chung. “The American people swiftly responded when Sri Lanka’s economic crisis reduced access to nutritional food for many Sri Lankans, including children and mothers. This shipment reflects our continued commitment to the people of Sri Lanka.”

The United States has announced more than $270 million in new support to Sri Lanka over the last year. “As one of Sri Lanka’s longstanding development partners, we recognize how critical daily vital micronutrient intake is for young people.

Therefore, child and maternal feeding programmes were one of USAID’s very first assistance interventions in Sri Lanka, more than six decades ago,” said Gabriel Grau, USAID Mission Director for Sri Lanka and Maldives.

“We are grateful for USAID’s assistance, which has enabled WFP to rapidly expand its emergency operation to reach the most food-insecure communities,” said Abdur Rahim Siddiqui, WFP Sri Lanka Representative and Country Director. “The latest shipment of fortified rice,funded by USAID, will support the continuation of the school meal programme, while providing children with added nutrients through a mix of iron and folic acid, relieving parents who are struggling to provide healthy meals to their families.”

Pregnant and lactating mothers will receive Thriposha – a nutrition intervention in Sri Lanka that provides a combination of energy, protein, and micronutrients as a ‘ready-to-eat’ cereal.This initiative is one component of the longstanding partnership between the American and Sri Lankan people to promote economic prosperity and democratic good governance for all Sri Lankans.



Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Latest News

United Republic Front presents ‘A united step for the country’ to the President

Published

on

By

Leader of the United Republic Front Member of Parliament Patali Champika Ranawaka, presented the proposal titled “A United Step for the Country” to President Ranil Wickremesinghe , at ‘Srikota’, the United National Party headquarters in Colombo this morning (24).

Speaking at the event President Ranil Wickremesinghe, highlighted the government’s concerted efforts over the past two years to stabilize the country’s economy, which had faced significant challenges. Stressing the government’s commitment to steering the economy towards recovery through strategic reforms, the President expressed his determination to continue these initiatives with the collective support of everyone.

Recalling his open invitation to all political parties to unite under a common agenda for the country, regardless of political differences, the President reiterated his willingness to embrace constructive proposals from all political parties as part of the nation-building efforts.

The President responded positively to the request made by Member of Parliament Patali Champika Ranawaka to allow other political parties to participate in the upcoming negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) next month concerning the restructuring of foreign debt.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe, responding queries about the scheduling of elections, affirmed that the Presidential Election will proceed as scheduled, with the General Election anticipated to take place early next year.

 

Continue Reading

News

Opp. fears govt. discarding SC recommendations on ‘Anti-Terrorism’ Bill

Published

on

Prof. G. L. Peiris

Prof. Peiris highlights need for ex post facto judicial review

By Shamindra Ferdinando

Former External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris, MP, said that Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena’s refusal to accept that Supreme Court recommendations hadn’t been accommodated in ‘Online Safety Act No 09 of 2024’, would undermine their faith in the committee stage of a particular Bill.

The dissident SLPP MP said so when The Island sought his opinion on the SC determination on the ‘Anti-Terrorism’ Bill.

Against the backdrop of the continuing controversy over the circumstances under which the Parliament enacted the ‘Online Safety Bill’, the Opposition was seriously concerned about the Wickremesinghe-Rajapaksa government adopting the same strategy in passing the ‘Anti-Terrorism’ Bill.

Prof. Peiris emphasised that the Speaker even ignored the Human Rights Commission advice that SC’s recommendations hadn’t been accommodated. The academic, who recently aligned himself with the SJB, said that the genuine Opposition shared his concerns.

Several parties challenged the ‘Anti-Terrorism’ Bill in the SC in terms of Article 121(1) of the Constitution. The determination of the SC as to the Constitutionality of the Bill concluded as—

(a) Clause 3, Clause 42, Clause 53, and Clause 70 of the Bill are inconsistent with Article 12(1) of the Constitution and required a special majority to be passed by Parliament.

(b) However, the SC stated that the said inconsistencies can be ceased if the said Clauses are amended as per the Determination of the Court.

(b) Clause 4 has to be suitably amended as per the Supreme Court Determination. Clause 72 (1) is unconstitutional and needs to be passed by a Special Majority and a Referendum. The unconstitutionality will cease if this Clause is amended as per the Determination of the Supreme Court.

(c) Correspondingly, Clause 72(2) must be amended in accordance with the Determination.

(d) Clause 75 (3) infringed the Article 4 (c) read with Article 3 of the Constitution and required 2/3 majority and a Referendum. The invalidity will cease 7 upon the amendments suggested in the Determination.

(f) Clause 83 (7) requires a special majority to be passed into law. It has to be suitably amended as per the Supreme Court Determination.

Further, the Supreme Court has determined that subject to the amendments that have adumbrated to the provisions of the Bill by the Supreme Court, the Bill could be enacted into law with a Simple Majority only if the amendments determined by the Supreme Court are introduced to the provisions.

Prof Peiris said that the crisis highlighted the need for ex post facto judicial review, for which there is at present no provision in Sri Lanka. The position is otherwise in countries like the USA and India where an Act of Parliament can be impugned, even after completion of the legislative process, on the ground of conflict with imperative provisions of the Constitution. Such provision existed in Sri Lanka prior to the First Republican Constitution of 1972.

The former minister said that in the draft Constitution Bill which he presented to Parliament on 3 August 2000 on behalf of the Government of President CBK, appropriate provision in this regard was included. “Unfortunately, the Constitution was burnt in the Chamber of Parliament. This gap in our law should be filled, in my view, when a comprehensive exercise in constitutional reform is undertaken by a new Administration after the conduct of national elections this year.”

Continue Reading

News

US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Verma visits Sri Lanka

Published

on

Deputy Secretary of State of the United States of America Richard Verma visited Sri Lanka from last Thursday to yesterday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a press release.

The visiting U.S. Deputy Secretary of State and delegation had extensive discussions with Foreign Minister Ali Sabry at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on further strengthening bilateral cooperation. The U.S. Deputy Secretary of State also paid a courtesy call on President Ranil Wickremesinghe following the discussions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Foreign Minister Ali Sabry, while appreciating the humanitarian and emergency assistance granted by the U.S. to overcome the economic challenges encountered by Sri Lanka, welcomed the recent US$ 553 million development assistance extended by the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation to the Colombo West International Terminal Private Limited. He also appreciated the U.S. assistance in securing the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) from the IMF.

Foreign Minister Sabry briefed Deputy Secretary of State Verma on Sri Lanka’s priorities as Chair of the Indian Ocean Rim Association and the opportunities to foster collaboration in blue economy and maritime security in the region to promote freedom of navigation for all and for the facilitation of trade and commerce. He also apprised the Deputy Secretary of State of the Government’s efforts to further strengthen governance, democracy, and rule of law, as well as to combat corruption.

Deputy Secretary of State Verma while noting the encouraging progress in Sri Lanka following the economic downturn in the last two years, assured continuous U.S. assistance to the country towards economic prosperity.

The Deputy Secretary of State was accompanied by the U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka Julie Chung, senior officials from the White House National Security Council, U.S. Department of State, and the U.S. Department of Defence. Acting Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mohammed Jauhar and senior officials of the Foreign Ministry were associated with the Foreign Minister at the meeting.

Continue Reading

Trending