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Tue06192018

Last updateTue, 19 Jun 2018 8am

Local News

Minister Mangala Samaraweera says new regulations for microfinance.


The Government has decided to absorb the interest of microfinance loans less than 150,000 rupees extended by errant microfinance companies, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera told Parliament yesterday, and would publish new regulations to streamline the industry and improve accountability later this month.

The measure is expected to bring relief to thousands of families who have obtained credit facilities less than 150,000 rupees and are now unable to payback. According to the Minister of Finance and Mass Media Mangala Samaraweera, the Government will be absorbing the interest component of each credit facility issued at extremely unfair rates. New regulations for microfinance companies will be published on 22 June.

Minister Samaraweera told the Parliament that most of the microfinance and finance companies have ruined the financial sector of Sri Lanka. Especially in the Northern and North Central parts of the island where a few female borrowers have committed suicide because they were unable to bear the pressure. Some depositors and borrowers of these microfinance companies are in a pathetic condition. In the absence of payments, the officers of these companies have started obtaining sexual bribes from borrowers, especially from young women who are unable to pay back.

Librarian vacancies in all school libraries will be filled soon.

Minister of Education Akila Viraj Kariyawasam says a cabinet paper will be prepared to fill the existing librarian vacancies in all school libraries. At a ceremony held in the Ministry premises yesterday he said all the government libraries will be upgraded by developing their human and physical resources. The Minister emphasises the need to increase appetite for reading among school children.

Sri Lanka becomes the 2nd in the South Asian region in the Global Peace Index.

Sri Lanka becomes the 2nd in the South Asian region in the Global Peace Index according to a report by an Australian think tank. Sri Lanka is in the 67th place, Bhutan is the only country ahead of Sri Lanka in the South Asian region.

India has moved up four places to the 137th rank among 163 countries, due to a reduction in the level of violent crime driven by increased law enforcement. Iceland remains the most peaceful country in the world, a position it has held since 2008. New Zealand, Austria, Portugal and Denmark also sit in the top five most peaceful rankings.

Syria remains the least peaceful country in the world, a position it has held for the past five years. Afghanistan, South Sudan, Iraq and Somalia comprise the remaining least peaceful countries. The index is topped by Iceland, followed by New Zealand, Portugal, Austria and Denmark, whereas war-torn Syria remains the least peaceful country in the world, followed by Afghanistan, Iraq, South Sudan, and Yemen.

The President says, intellectuals in various fields, migrating to other countries in search of greener pastures, has become a grave concern

President Maithripala Sirisena says, intellectuals in various fields, migrating to other countries in search of greener pastures, has become a grave concern. However, the government is not prepared to enact legislation and restrict the free movement of labour.
He emphasizes, after enjoying the benefits of free education, in keeping with their conscience, they should dedicate themselves to contribute in their motherland and fulfil their responsibility.

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The Cost of Living Committee requests a report from the Consumer Affairs Authority concerning the canned fish and milk powder industries

The Cost of Living Committee is focussing special attention on the prices of essential food items. The committee comprising Malik Samarawickrama, Rishad Bathiudeen and Mahinda Amaraweera convened yesterday. Speaking to the SLBC, Director to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce: Indika Ranathunge said, sufficient stocks of rice are available in the market, as the Maha cultivation harvest is now being marketed, and the price of rice has now stabilized.

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It has been emphasized, although a few financial institutions are facing a crisis, the country is not facing any financial recess at all

Parliamentarian Ajith Mannapperuma says, although a few financial institutions are facing a crisis, the country is not facing any financial recess at all. He made this confirmation speaking at the the debate to adjourn Parliament today.

Joining in the debate, Parliamentarian Vasudewa Nanayakkara pointed out the necessity to speedily implement the loan scheme that does not require guarantees, under the Enterprise Sri Lanka Programme.

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Six new councilors have been appointed to the Maharagama Urban council causing a chaotic situation

Six members of the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna including Kanthi Kodikara have been sworn in as members of the Maharagama Urban Council, replacing the members of the Independent Group which had contested under the ‘Motorcycle’ symbol.

Meanwhile a tense situation has been reported at the Urban Council, a short while ago, after several members opposed the swearing in of the SLPP members including Kodikara.

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Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama points out that if the joint opposition had voted for, parliamentarian Sudarshani Fernandopulle would have been elected as the deputy Speaker

Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama says that  parliamentarian Sudarshani Fernandopulle could not be elected as the deputy speaker since the members of the joint opposition did not support her at the voting.  SLFP parliamentarian except the joint opposition members voted for her.

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The Speaker says the reports on an alleged list of names of parliamentarians taking grafts are utterly false

Speaker Karu Jayasooriya says that it is not appropriate to spread falls information regarding the bond scam.  Making statements based on fabricated and false information leads to create negative impact on society.  Some media reports say that there is a list of names of parliamentarians who have accepted money  from various persons. The speaker stressed that it is utterly false.  The Speaker made these comments in the parliament today.

50 thousand job opportunities will be created through enterprises Sri Lanka programme

The aim of the government's  enterprises Sri Lanka programme is to create 50,000 job opportunities. The cabinet of ministers has given its approval to conduct a series of exhibitions at national and district levels on vision 2025 related to this subject.  The government will provide MRI scan to the Maharagama Apeksha hospital and Pet scan to the Kandy teaching hospital. The government has also taken measures to make health and physical education subject compulsory upto GCE O/L. Minister Gayantha Karunathilleke revealed this at a news conference held in Colombo today.