Says confidence in the President has eroded
General sends resignation letter to President
2009-11-12 | 2.55 PM
Sources from the Presidential Secretariat said General Sarath Fonseka had sent his letter of resignation to the President through the Defence Secretary today (12) claiming he was unable to continue in the post of Chief of Defence Staff since his confidence in the government and the President have eroded. The letter sent to the President has also been copied to the President’s Secretary.
Sources said the letter requesting permission to retire from active military service includes a three-page statement giving reasons for his decision to resign. However, the letter has not stated of his intention to enter politics following retirement.
The General in his letter has emphasized the need for a strong trust between the government and the forces chiefs to sustain the security forces and added that the internal squabbles between the government, the President and himself could result in the deterioration of the level of discipline in the military. He had requested the President to approve his request for retirement with effect from December 1, 2009 in this backdrop.
Sources added the General in his letter had highlighted that it was the duty of the President and the government to provide him with the necessary security as he was under LTTE threat even after retiring from the security forces.
The Free Media Movement Convener has appointed an official from the Prime Minister’s Office to inquire into the organization’s audit report.
The official called Senevirathne has sent e-mail’s via the official e-mail address used at the Prime Minister’s Office (XXX@pmoffice.gov.lk) to office bearers from the Organization requesting for audit details. Sources from the Prime Minister’s Office said all e-mails and details received have been recorded in computers in the Office.
However, the name and e-mail address of the individual is as follows: N.G.K.K. Senevirathnefirstname.lastname@example.org
It has been reported to Lanka News Web that Johnston Fernando, UNP MP for Kurunegala District met with Maga Neguma Chairman Jaliya Kulasekere at the Hilton Hotel last week for a secret discussion.
Well informed sources say that Johnston Fernando at this meeting has told Jaliya Kulasekere that the MP Dayasiri Jayasekere from the same district is becoming more popular than him and therefore, Jayasekere should be politically assassinated. Fernando had also told Kulasekere that Jayasekere could be framed by using a connection between him and a business conducted by Achala Bogollagama, the sister of Rohitha Bogollagama and the Minister of Transport, W.B.Ekanayake.
It is also understood that Fernando has told Kulasekere to use Rosy Senanayake as the informant in the light of the strained relationship between Senanayake and Jayasekere during the recent past.
The President has ordered the immediate removal and transfer of Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Director General SSP Ravi Waidyalankara since he conducted extensive investigations into various crimes and corruption of several ministers and businessmen close to the President.
The Presidential Secretariat has advised the IGP to state the transfer has been carried out as a routine one carried out when a new IGP assumes office. Labour Minister Mervyn Silva had reportedly made several requests from the President to remove Ravi Waidyalankara from the CID.
President seeks friendship with Ranil through his friends
2009-11-11 | 11.55 PM
Sources from the Opposition Leader’s Office said the President has requested two of Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe’s friends to get Wickremesinghe to agree to a joint action plan to ensure a better future for the country. The President has made this request after emphasizing the threat on the country’s democracy if a military regime under General Fonseka rules the country.
The President had called former UNP Chairman Malik Samarawickrema and had spoken at length of the steps that could be taken to reach a consensus with the Opposition Leader. The President had also invited two of the Opposition Leader’s close friends to Temple Trees for a discussion on Wednesday (11).
Sources further observed that the President had informed Malik Samarawcikrema that he would abolish the Executive Presidency within the next two years.
President to appoint Wasantha Karannagoda as Chief of Defence Staff
2009-11-11 | 11.55 PM
The President has decided to accept General Sarath Fonseka’s resignation letter if it is handed over to him and to appoint former Navy Chief Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda as the new Chief of Defence Staff after amending the Chief of Defence Staff Act, sources from Temple Trees said.
According to the Chief of Defence Staff Act, only a serving forces chief could be appointed to the post. Therefore, the President has asked the Attorney General to prepare the necessary amendments to be included in the Act to enable a retired forces chief to be appointed to the post.
Human rights defender Sanatha Fernando released on bail after 250 days in detention
2009-11-11 | 8.45 PM
Mr. Santha Fernando, the executive secretary for justice and peace of the National Christian Council was arrested by the NIB and at the airport on 27th March and detained by the TID was given bail today, 11th October 2009. He had been on his way to India for a meeting and arrested after finding documents in his luggage concerning the humanitarian crisis in the Vanni region. He had been arrested under the provisions of the prevention of terrorism act and under the provisions of the emergency regulations.
Government snubs Special UN Representative on media freedom
2009-11-11 | 6.10 PM
The Sri Lankan government has reportedly ignored a request made by the UN Human Rights Office in August 2009 seeking permission for UN Special Representative on Freedom of Expression, Frank La Rue to visit the country.
The visit is aimed at inquiring into the current situation of media freedom in the country and Frank La Rue expects to meet with members of the government as well as from other parties during this fact finding mission.
The closure of the head office maintained by the Free Media Movement (FMM) and several other media organizations has resulted in the FMM losing an office space to carry out its operations. The FMM and the other media organizations maintained a head office down Flower Road, Colombo 7 utilizing funds received for several projects including reporting on human rights.
Wimal’s Collective of National Organizations to prevent General from contesting
2009-11-10 | 6.45 PM
Ven. Medagama Dhammanada Thero from the Asgiri Chapter said on behalf of the Collective of National Oraginzations that a request would be forwarded to General Sarath Fonseka through the heads of the three nikayas and a Sangha Agna (decree) would be issued if he failed to adhere to the request.
NFF Leader Wimal Weerawansa called a meeting with the newly formed Collective of National Organizations that includes political and religious leaders in Committee Room C at BMICH to discuss steps to be taken to prevent General Sarath Fonseka from entering politics.
Indian intelligence head to meet with General’s representative
2009-11-10 | 6.45 PM
Sources from the diplomatic community said a senior official from the Indian intelligence unit is to visit Sri Lankan during the week to meet with a representative of General Sarath Fonseka, who is tipped to contest as the common candidate at the next Presidential election.
Sources also said a special representative of General Sarath Fonseka had yesterday (9) met with several Indian officials along with Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe.
Jayalath Weerakkody agrees to become Defence Secretary following request by First Lady
2009-11-10 | 6.45 PM
Sources from Temple Trees say that former Air Force Chief, Air Chief Marshall Jayalath Weerakkody has agreed to accept the post of Defence Secretary following a request made by First Lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa.
Jayalath Weerakkody, who currently serves as the Sri Lankan High Commissioner in Pakistan, was requested by the government to resign from his post as Air Force Chief following various allegations leveled against him.
Major General Parakrama Pannipitiya to be appointed Army Chief of Staff
2009-11-10 | 6.45 PM
The Defence Secretary has decided to appoint Major General Parakrama Pannipitiya, who has been suspended from duties following accusations leveled against him of being involved in treasure hunting, as the Army Chief of Staff after recalling him to the force.
Former Army Chief, General Sarath Fonseka instituted disciplinary action against Major General Parakrama Pannipitiya for his alleged involvement in treasure hunting during the period of the war. Sources from the Army Headquarters say the decision to appoint such an officer to a senior position in the force has been taken with the intension of hurting the General’s pride.
Army Commander Lt. General Jagath Jayasuriya has organized a series of meetings with soldiers who participated in the Wanni operation in a bid to pledge his support for President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s campaign for the next Presidential election. The soldiers have started to call these meetings the “Wanni election campaign.”
A senior Army officer told Lanka News Web that it was disgraceful that the Army Commander after claiming it was unsuitable for military personnel to engage in politics has now organized a series of political meetings. He said the actions of the Army Commander have brought disgrace to the post as no other head of the Army had acted in such a manner.
What happened to Rs.20 million of Tsunami Collections of Rupavahini?
2009-11-10 | 6.45 PM
It is reported from our sources at the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation that a sum of over Rupees Twenty Million and accumulated interest amounting to well over Rupees Ten Million are still with the accounts of the corporation. These monies collected to for the welfare of the victims of 26th December 2004 Tsunami have not been used for the purpose they were collected for. It is also reported that these monies collected from the public after the deadly Tsunami struck Sri Lanka killing over 40,000 people are now going to be used for building a library in Tangalle, on the orders of the President. However, the non-governmental organization, World Vision has already completed a scheme of construction of libraries covering all the Tsunami affected areas in the country.