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World Cancer Week Awareness Campaign by Public Education Committee of Sri Lanka Cancer Society



World Cancer Day commemorated on February 4 is the global uniting initiative led by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) Geneva, to raise worldwide attention and inspire action for cancer free world.

World Cancer Day aims to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness about cancer, and pressing governments, and key stakeholders to take action to reduce Cancer related illness and deaths

In Sri Lanka, the Public Education Committee (PEC) of the Sri Lanka Cancer Society (SLCS) decided to have a whole week dedicated to cancer awareness. The theme set by UICC was “I am and I will” is about you and your commitment to act.

February 1-7 was dedicated to world cancer week. It commenced with articles in the newspapers, a supplement on World Cancer Day sponsored by Hemas Pharmaceuticals, and videos on Social media. The PEC Chairperson, the President and the Chairperson of the SLCS were interviewed on TV (Derana), Radio and Social media together with Consultant Oncologists, and several cancer survivors.

A song was composed for World Cancer day entitled “I Am and I Will”, and a Youth Art contest for school children is being held to spread awareness amongst the youth.

The PEC also participated in the World Cancer Walk organized by Belgium and several influencers helped to spread the message “Early Detection is key in fighting this disease.”

AIA Insurance who signed up as our Charity partner in 2019 to celebrate their centennial year, continues to support us to date. They helped to spread awareness during the world cancer week by displaying posters in their many branches around Sri Lanka in addition to their ongoing financial support and corporate activities to create awareness on the battle against Cancer.

At SLCS, we are committed to provide the best care for cancer patients at the Homes and Hospice (our palliative care center) at Maharagama. We also continue with great vigor to control cancer by educating the public on early detection and prevention of cancer, providing financial support, drugs etc., to needy Cancer survivors. These services are carried out free of charge. Therefore, the support extended by AIA Insurance and other generous donors have been of great help and value to carry on our indomitable task.

As the CEO of AIA, Nikhil Advani explained, “while the world is focused on COVID-19, non-Communicable Diseases, such as cancer remain a very real problem in Sri Lanka, and are responsible for over 76% deaths. Cancer is one of the nation’s leading health concerns and needs specialized treatment and more so a dedicated care and support system for patients. It gives us great meaning to be able to support the Cancer Society in caring for patients faced with this dreaded illness –both physically and mentally.”

For more information of the work done by SLCS please visit us on Instagram (sl_cancer_society_pec) and on our website


Ms. Anoja Karunaratne,


Sri Lanka Cancer Society.

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Overtime gravy train for public sector back



Govt. MPs make contradictory statements on state of economy

By Shamindra Ferdinando

UNP National List MP Wajira Abeywardena on Sunday (26) disclosed the issuance of a circular by the Finance Ministry to restore overtime and other payments in the public sector.

The declaration was made in Galle soon after Transport and Media Minister Bandula Gunawardane lamented that the government was short of billions of rupees to pay public sector salaries, pensions, Samurdhi payments and meet recurrent expenditure.

Minister Gunawardena and UNP National List MP Abeywardena addressed the local media after the handing over of several buses to the Galle SLTB depot.

Cabinet Spokesman Gunawardena said that the government needed as much as Rs 196 bn before the Sinhala and Tamil New Year and its projected revenue was Rs 173 bn. In addition to that Rs 500 mn was required to settle what Minister Gunawardena called bilateral debt.

Minister Gunawardane said that a part of the first tranche of USD 333 mn from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) would be utilised to pay public sector salaries.

Of the USD 333 mn received so far, USD 121 had been used to pay the first installment of USD 1 bn credit line secured from India early last year, according to State Finance Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya.

Power and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera in the second week of August last year revealed as much as Rs 3 bn had been paid as overtime to Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) workers for several months. This disclosure was made in response to a query raised by Chief Opposition Whip Lakshman Kiriella.

One of the major demands of the public sector trade unions on the warpath over the Wickremesinghe-Rajapaksa government’s new tax formula is the restoration of overtime.

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Now, Opposition wants Finance Secy. hauled up before Privileges Committee



Prof G L Peris

Prof. G. L. Peiris yesterday (27) urged Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena to act speedily on the main Opposition Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) request to summon Finance Secretary Mahinda Siriwardena before the parliamentary Committee on Ethics and Privileges.

Addressing the media on behalf of the Freedom People’s Alliance, the former External Affairs Minister said that the Treasury Secretary had challenged the parliament by withholding funds allocated in the budget 2023 to the Election Commission thereby sabotaging the election.

Prof. Peiris said that there couldn’t be a far worse violation of parliamentary privileges than a government official undermining Parliament.

Instead of appreciating the intervention made by the Supreme Court to facilitate the delayed Local Government polls, the ruling party had sought to challenge the apex court, Prof. Peiris said, urging Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena to fulfill his obligations.

Prof. Pieris said that if the government lacked funds, just one percent of USS 333 mn received from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was sufficient to conduct the election.

The ex-minister said that the IMF wouldn’t oppose the utilisation of a fraction of the first tranche of USD 2.9 bn loan facility provided over a period of four years to guarantee the constitutional rights of the Sri Lankan electorate. (SF)

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Cabinet nod for fuel distribution by three foreign companies



By Rathindra Kuruwita

Minister of Power and Energy Kanchana Wijesekera announced yesterday that the Cabinet of Ministers has granted approval for allowing China’s Sinopec, Australia’s United Petroleum and RM Parks of the USA, in collaboration with multinational Oil and Gas Company – Shell plc, to enter the fuel retail market in Sri Lanka.

The minister said that each of the three companies would be given 150 dealer operated fuel stations, which are currently operated by Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC). A further 50 fuel stations at new locations will be established by each selected company, he said.

They will be granted licences to operate for 20 years to import, store, distribute and sell petroleum products in Sri Lanka, the minister tweeted.

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