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Ranil takes Central Bank, SEC from Finance Ministry purview
Thursday, 22 January 2015 - 9:54 AM SL Time

In a major development, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, who is also Minister of Policy Planning and Economic Affairs, has taken the Central Bank and the Securities and Exchange Commission under him.

Traditionally these two institutions have come under the Ministry of Finance, a portfolio currently held by Ravi Karunanayake, who on Tuesday said regulatory bodies were being brought under the Prime Minister.
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Sri Lankan Prime Minister seeks support of all MPs for government programs
Wednesday, 21 January 2015 - 1:40 PM SL Time

Jan 20, Colombo: Addressing the parliament as Sri Lanka`s Prime Minister today, the former opposition leader and leader of United National Party (UNP), Ranil Wickremasinghe requested the support of all members of the parliament to make the new government`s programs to rebuild the country within 100 days a success.

The Sri Lankan parliament convened today for the first time after the new national government is formed under the newly elected President Maithripala Sirisena.
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Monday, 12 January 2015 - 11:43 AM SL Time

President Maithripala Sirisena in his inaugural address to the Nation from the hollowed precincts of the Most Sacred Sri Dalada Maligawa in Kandy yesterday, called on all political parties in Parliament to join him in forming a National Government.

President Sirisena also pledged that unlimited powers vested with the Executive Presidency will be transferred to Parliament, Cabinet, Judiciary and the public administrative mechanism. Noting at the outset that he was honoured to address the Nation from the hallowed premises of the Dalada Maligawa, President Sirisena said he has no intention in contesting for the Presidency again.
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Sri Lanka`s former President`s brother flees country - report
Monday, 12 January 2015 - 11:41 AM SL Time

A powerful minister of former Sri Lankan government and the brother of defeated president Mahinda Rajapaksa, Basil Rajapaksa has reportedly left the island with his family.

Local media reported that former Minister has left the country in Emirates EK 349 flight for Dubai at 2:55 a.m. this morning. He is expected to transit from there to go to the United States.
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New Sri Lankan president expected to kill James Packer`s casino plans
Saturday, 10 January 2015 - 9:46 AM SL Time

Billionaire James Packer is expected to walk away from a plan to build a $US400 million ($496 million) casino and hotel in Sri Lanka after the island nation elected a new president, Maithripala Sirisena, who has promised to block the project.

Mr Sirisena, who is described as a social conservative, defected from the ruling party in November after previously serving under former president Mahinda Rajapaksa as health minister. The manifesto released by his new party, the New Democratic Front, promised to `disallow` licences for casinos proposed by Mr Packer`s Crown Resorts and local developer John Keells Holdings.
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MS in stunning win over MR
Saturday, 10 January 2015 - 9:45 AM SL Time

Having defeated President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the January 8, 2015 presidential poll, victor Maithripala Sirisena yesterday took oaths before Supreme Court Justice K. Sripavan as the country s sixth executive president.

The former SLFP General Secretary won 12 electoral districts polling 6,217,162 votes (51.28 per cent) whereas the incumbent secured 5,768,090 votes (47.58 per cent). Maithripala Sirisena won by a majority of 449,072 votes.
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TNA congratulates Maithri
Friday, 9 January 2015 - 7:17 PM SL Time

Extending its warmest congratulations to President-Elect Maithripala Sirisena, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) said it was essential to resolve the national question urgently while tackling the grave matters that face the country.

TNA leader R. Samanthan said in a statement that his party extended its sincere thanks to all Sri Lankans especially those in the Northern and Eastern Provinces for extending their overwhelming support to President-Elect at the request of the TNA.
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Election Commissioner declares Maithripala Sirisena as the new President of Sri Lanka
Friday, 9 January 2015 - 3:55 PM SL Time

After the conclusion of counting of votes of 2015 Presidential Election, the Election Commissioner of Sri Lanka Mahinda Deshapriya has declared the candidate of the New Democratic Front Maithripala Sirisena as the Executive President of Sri Lanka.

Sirisena claimed victory at the polls held Thursday with 51.3 percent of the votes while the incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa received 47.6% of the votes in the tightly contested election.

It has been reported that the new president will be sworn in this evening. Full Story     Post Reply To This

Indian PM congratulates new President, reaffirms continued solidarity and support for Sri Lanka
Friday, 9 January 2015 - 3:54 PM SL Time

Congratulating the newly elected President in Sri Lanka, Maithripala Sirisena, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said as a close friend and a neighbor India will continue to support Sri Lanka.

Prime Minister Modi said in a Twitter message that he spoke to Maithripala Sirisena and congratulated him.

Modi said he congratulates the people of Sri Lanka on the peaceful and democratic poll process.
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Vote early!
Thursday, 8 January 2015 - 12:37 PM SL Time

The Election Department has urged urged voters to exercise their franchise as early as possible today and avoid disappointment.

Elections Chief Mahinda Deshapriya said yesterday that the country s seventh Presidential Election would be conducted from 7.00am to 4.00pm today countrywide.

He said that no one was permitted to enter the polling stations other than registered voters, staff of the polling station, security officials, authorized election monitors and polling agents deployed by the candidates.
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Voting begins for presidential election in Sri Lanka
Thursday, 8 January 2015 - 12:36 PM SL Time

The polls opened for Sri Lankans this morning to cast their votes for the 7th presidential election amid tight security.

Voting for the election began at 7:00 a.m. today and ends at 4.00 p.m. Some 15 million voters will be eligible to cast their ballots at 12,314 polling stations nationwide.

A total of 19 candidates are vying for the top post although the major battle is between the incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who is seeking an unprecedented third term, and his challenger, his former cabinet minister and common opposition candidate, Maithripala Sirisena.
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Wednesday, 7 January 2015 - 9:27 AM SL Time

The ballot boxes for Thursday s Presidential Election will be distributed among respective polling booths today (7), according to Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya. .

3,000 newly turned out wooden and plastic ballot boxes will be utilized at this poll at the 12,340 polling stations that are being readied today for the countrywide election, Commissioner Deshapriya said. He said, the strictest security measures have been taken to conduct a free and fair election. There is no chance ballot box tamperiing as some have suggested.
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Health Minister promises to expand drug production locally
Wednesday, 7 January 2015 - 9:25 AM SL Time

Drug manufacturing firms in India and Bangladesh had reached unprecedented quality standards, but the local pharmaceutical industry had to be much improved and expanded to manufacture quality products to cater to the needs of patients, Health Minister Tissa Attanayaka said last week.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa had in his election manifesto had stated that a long-term strategy to manufacture drugs in Sri Lanka had to be expedited. The objective could be achieved if the country had adopted an effective action plan, Minister Attanayake said at the Opening Ceremony of a New State Pharmaceuticals Manufacturing Corporation (SPMC) Outlet at Dharmapala Mawatha, Colombo.
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Election Commissioner warns Sri Lanka state media institutions
Wednesday, 7 January 2015 - 9:22 AM SL Time

Sri Lanka`s Election Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya has warned several state media institutions against continuing to engage in broadcasting election propaganda in violation of election laws, an election monitoring group, Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) said.

The Election Commissioner has informed the state media institutions that if they continue to violate election laws they will be removed from the list of media institutions allowed to broadcast the election results, Executive Director of CaFFE, Rajith Tennakoon told the BBC Sinhala service.
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