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Friday June 14th, 2024

Sri Lanka Freedom Party has had to import acting chairman: Dayasiri

ECONOMYNEXT — The crisis in Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) is so severe that it has had to import an acting chairman from a different party, ousted SLFP general secretary Dayasiri Jayasekara said.

Speaking at an event, Jayasekara lamented the state of the once-powerful party.

“I’m still a member of the SLFP. I was removed illegally. Today the SLFP is facing a number of crises. All of these crises began after my removal. There were no such crises when I was there,” he said.

“Today, I’m saddened to note that the SLFP crisis has become so severe that a new chairman has been brought from outside, from a different party has been made the party’s acting chairman,” he added.

He was referring to a controversial decision by one faction of the SLFP appointing Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe as the party’s acting chairman, even as Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva continues to function as acting chairman following the latter’s appointment last week.

Speaking to reporters, Rajapakshe said: “If we consider challenges a problem, we won’t be able to do anything. We have always accepted challenges and are ready to face them.”

Rajapakshe has also expressed interest in contesting the presidential election due to be held between September 17 and October 18 this year.

Asked to comment on social media speculation that his candidacy could be a way for former president Maithripala Sirisena to have the legal cases against him removed, Rajapakshe said: “There is no such law in Sri Lanka yet.”

Last week, the Colombo District Court extended an enjoining order preventing Sirisena from serving as SLFP chairman.

The order, made by the court following a case filed by former president Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, will be in effect till May 09.

The SLFP last week appointed its incumbent vice president Nimal Siripala de Silva as the party’s acting chairman, amid much controversy. The appointment was made at a politburo meeting held April 08 morning after the the Colombo District Court issued an interim order the previous week preventing former President Maithripala Sirisena from serving as SLFP chairman.

The pro-Sirisena faction appointed Justice Minister Rajapakshe as acting chairman on Sunday April 21. (Colombo/Apr22/2024)

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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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