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Friday June 14th, 2024

Sri Lanka doctors’ association threatens action against private medical universities

ECONOMYNEXT — A doctors’ professional association has written to President Ranil Wickremesinghe demanding that the government revoke plans to approve the establishment of private medical universities in Sri Lanka.

Secretary of the All Ceylon Medical Officers Association Jayantha Bandara told reporters on Wednesday March 20 that the association would take trade union action against the decision if the government did not revoke it.

Bandara spoke to the reporters outside the Presidential Secretariat having just handed over the letter to an official.

“The government is again trying to create a major problem in the country,” he said.

Bandara, a medical doctor, claimed that the issue of private medical universities has led to confrontational situations in the country over the recent past and also led to problems in education and health sectors.

“The government is ready to approve and open several private universities,” he said, asking if it was a priority at the moment.

“This is clearly not something that’s needed now. Without doing what needs to be done, the government is starting private universities that will destory our country’s education and health,” he said.

Bandara did not elaborate on how private medical universities might destroy either education or health.

He said existing state-run medical faculties including recently opened ones are facing a major crisis, with massive shortages of academic staff and resource constraints, which he said has caused a breakdown in education.

“In the health service, doctors and medical staff are leaving the country. A major crisis has been created in the health service. What is the government doing in the meantime? They’re trying to create private universities,” said Bandara.

In their letter to the president, the All Ceylon Medical Officers Association demands that the government provide facilities to existing state-run faculties and take measures to curb the departure of lecturers.

“Also provide solutions to medical and other staff shortages in the health sector,” he said.

“We first ask that the government revoke this decision immediately. Or we’ll take the maximum action we can take as the All Ceylon Medical Officers Association  in due course,” he added. (Colombo/Mar20/2024)

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Sri Lanka opposition leader proposes Grama Rajya system in addition to 13A

Opposition leader Sajith Premadasa (r) – File photo

ECONOMYNEXT — Sri Lanka opposition leader Sajith Premadasa has proposed devolving power to the village level through a Grama Rajya system in addition to implementing the 13th amendment to the constitution.

Speaking at an event in Jaffna on on Wednesday June 12, Premadasa said all provinces will benefit from the 13th amendment.

“Whatever one’s ethnicity, religion, status or region, this country has citizens of equal level. They’re all Sri Lankan citizens.

“There is no division or grouping.  As we give you and every other province what you should be given through the 13th amendment, we must implement a Grama Rajya system,” Premadasa said, addressing a crowd of school children and other attendees.

Premadasa’s assurance of implementing the 13th amendment has already drawn some protest in the south.

A collective of civil society organisations held a protest outside the office of the leader of the opposition in Colombo on Thursday June 12.

Calling itself the ‘Coalition Against Partition of Sri Lanka’, the group carrying national flags marched up to the opposition leader’s office Thursday June 13 morning and demonstrated against the full implementation of the 13th amendment.

“We arrived here today to hand over a missive against devolving police powers, land powers and judicial powers. If Mr Premadasa is inside, come outside,” Jamuni Kamantha Thushara, Chairman of the Citizen’s Movement Against Fraud, Corruption, and Waste, was seen declaring at the site.

“First of all, tell us what we stand to achieve by dividing and giving away the north and east,” said another protestor, warning against bringing the 13th amendment “anywhere here (paththa palaathe)”.

A police officer at the scene the protestors that a secretary to the opposition leader was ready to accept their letter.

“In Kilonochchi, he says the 13th amendment will be implemented. The votes in the north are going to be decisive this election. To win those votes, President Ranil Wickremesinghe, Sajith and Anura Kumara Dissanayake all say they will implement the 13th. We will not allow this country to be divided into nine pieces,” said Thushara.

Ven Balangoda Kassapa Thero, who was arrested on June 06 during a protest against the new Electricity Act, was also seen at Thursday’s protest. The Buddhist monk requested for a debate with Premadasa on the matter of the 13th amendment. (Colombo/Jun12/2024)

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Sri Lanka rupee closes flat at 303.85/95 to US dollar

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee closed broadly flat at 303.85/95 to the US dollar on Thursday, from 303.80/304.00 to the dollar the previous day, dealers said. Bond yields were down.

A bond maturing on 15.12.2026 closed at 10.00/30 percent, down from 10.20/40 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.10.2027 closed at 10.60/75 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.07.2028 closed at 11.00/15 percent, down from 11.15/40 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.09.2029 closed at 11.80/85 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.05.2030 closed at 11.85/12.05 percent, down from 11.90/12.05 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.10.2032 closed stable at 11.95/12.15 percent. (Colombo/Jun13/2024)

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Sri Lanka sells Rs295bn in 2027 to 2031 bonds

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has sold 295 billion rupees in 2027, 2029 and 2031 bonds, data from the state debt office showed.

The debt office sold an offered 60 billion rupees of 15 October 2027 at an average yield of 10.30 percent.

All offered 125 billion rupees of 15 September 2029 bonds were sold at 11.00 percent.

All 110 billion rupees offered of 01 December 2031 bonds were sold at 12.00 percent. (Colombo/May13/2024)

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