The first case to be taken up by the three-judge bench of the Special Trial at Bar decided today, to hear the case filed by the FCID against Gamini Senarath, who was former president Mahinda Rajapaksa's chief of staff and Piyadasa Kudabalage, the former chairman and managing director of the Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation (SLIC), decides to hear the case daily, beginning from the 29th of October. They are charged with misappropriating SLIC funds by investing millions of rupees in various ventures including the Grand Hyatt Hotel project using the investments of Grand Hyatt, Colombo.
Several senior state counsel from the Attorney General’s Department will appear for the prosecution while the respondents have retained a team of President's Counsel and senior lawyers.The Trail at Bar comprises senior High Court judges Sampath Abeykoon, Sampath Wijeratne and Champa Janaki Rajaratne.
The court will sit in the morning and in the afternoon to expedite the hearing. Two more similar High Courts are also in the pipeline to hear other major frauds and crimes which are alleged to have taken place during the past 10 years.
Commenting on the reason that led to the government setting up the special High Court at Bar, Justice Minister Talatha Athukorale told the Cabinet that though a circular had been issued to judges by the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) directing that trials of more than five years old to be held daily, it was observed more in the breach.
At the end of 2015, there were some 16,960, cases pending in the High Courts countrywide while the number of pending cases pending at the end of 2016 was 16,463, the number of pending cases as at September 2017 was 17,565.
The minister said laws delays have to be remedied resulting in an amendment to the Code of Criminal Procedure Act to make it mandatory to hold trials in the High courts, except in exceptional circumstances and for good reasons which have to be recorded.Accordingly, the section 263 of the Criminal Procedure Code was amended to make daily mandatory.
Stressing the importance of properly fulfilling duties and responsibilities, President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday gave a clarification on his decision to summon the staff of the Sri Lankan Embassy in Austria, back to the country last week.President Sirisena observed that the Ambassador and the staff will return to Sri Lanka within the next few days.
The Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) notes the improved version of the Counter Terrorism Bill to repeal and replace the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) which has reportedly obtained Cabinet approval last week.
The Enterprise Sri Lanka projects which was launched by the Ministry of Finance and Mass media to inspire, assist and create a minimum of 100,000 new entrepreneurs has received Rs 8 billion ( USD 50 Million) from the Asian Development Bank for the rooftop solar power generation project
The Minister of Finance and Mass Media Mr. Mangala Samaraweera considering the requests made by the stakeholders in the fabric industry has reduced the Value Added Tax (VAT) on imported fabric to 5 percent. Minister Mangala Samaraweera signed the gazette notification in this regard today.
Late President J. R. Jayewardene was a pragmatic and farsighted leader who enabled the country to keep pace with modern international trends. Present day politicians have much to learn from his biography. The manner in which he steered the country overcoming problems and obstacles with patience and finesse was a fine example to present day politicians, Education Minister and UNP General Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said.
THE Finance and Mass Media Ministry has taken steps to implement the mobile service ‘Right to Information to the Village’ and various competitions will be conducted in schools islandwide to make students aware of their rights under the Right to Information Act, In addition to conduct workshops, seminars and an international conference on 28th September, 2018 in Nelum Pokuna Theatre.
With the objective of empowering youth to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in Sri Lanka, the proposal made by H.E. the President Maithripala Sirisena, to implement a program me namely 'Project for empowering youth with leadership skills.
Director General of Government Information Attorney-at-Law Sudarshana Gunawardhane while refuting media reports said that the CID has had no plans to arrest the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Vice Admiral Ravindra Wijegunatane in connection with the allegations on protecting Navy Sampath.
President Maithripala Sirisena has nominated Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe as the President’s representative to the Constitutional Council (CC), Parliament Chief of Staff and Deputy Secretary General Neil Iddawala said.He said the new appointment is effective immediately as Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka’s term of three years had ended on September 6. He said Minister Thilak Marapone was appointed to the CC as the Prime Minister’s representative some time back in place of Minister Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe