"Asidisi" Cricket Champions Organized for the sixth year by the Ministy of Parlimentary Reforms and Mass Media will be held on 30th Septemember, 01st and 02nd October 2016 at Thurstan Grounds, Colombo.

This Cricket toutnament is annually organized animed at Promoting friendly and Cordial relations among media institutions. Cheif guests of the inaugaral event are Parlymentary reforms and Mass Media Minister Gayantha Karunathilake , Deputy Minister Karunarathna Paranavithana and secratary of the Ministry Mr.Nimal Bopage.

Right to Information should commence in every sector, as Sri Lanka is a country where the democracy, freedom, and human rights are natured and ensured, said President Maithripala Sirisena.


President made these remarks addressing the International Conference on ‘Right to Information’ (RTI) held today in Colombo parallel to the International RTI Day.

The event was organized by the Department of Government Information in collaboration with the Ministry of Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media.


According to the President, the current government was able to fulfill a long awaited requirement, as well as his election pledge as the Common Opposition Candidate at the Presidential Election in 2015, which the previous governments neglected and were unable to implement.


He pointed out that the unfair activities and the disturbance against the future journey of the country due to the misuse and the mismanagement of public money will also disappear with the implementation of RTI. President also focused his attention on registering of NGOs.


The key note address of the conference was delivered by former Chief Justice of Delhi and Madras High Courts and the former Chairman of Indian Law Commission Ajit Prakash Shah.


The conference is held on 28th and 29th September.

Sri Lanka’s first ever International Conference on ‘Right to Information’ will be held on 28th and 29th September in Colombo with the participation of nearly 300 foreign and local participants.


The International Conference is organized parallel to the International Right to Information Day, by the Department of Government Information in Sri Lanka in collaboration with the Ministry of Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media.


The opening ceremony will be held on 28th September at Hilton Colombo Residence under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena. High profile politicians, academics, and experts including Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, Minister of Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media Gayantha Karunathilake, Deputy Minister Karunarathne Paranawithana, and the Director General of Government Information Dr. Ranga Kalansooriya.


Deputy Minster Paranawithana addressing media this evening at the Department of Government Information stated that the conference would focus its attention on the right to information, media regulation, and the current situation of mass media.

According to Dr. Ranga Kalansooriya, the implementation of the RTI Act should start from the grass root level and it is important to share the experience with the neighbor states such as India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.

President Maithripala Sirisena said that the world leaders have commended Sri Lanka on the achievements of the last 18 months and that is a great incentive, encouragement and a blessing for Sri Lanka. He said this while briefing media on his discussions with several Heads of State and other leaders at the Loews Regency Hotel in New York.


He said that during the last UNGA too, he met these leaders, but they were more curious about the new government’s policies then. “Now they express open appreciation about our achievements,” he said. “I assured them that we, as a government, are determined to take the country towards progress and make Sri Lanka a truly democratic and prosperous nation,” he said.


The current respectful position of Sri Lanka is something the entire nation, irrespective of party politics could be proud of, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said, and added that the credit for this achievement goes to President Sirisena. Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said that he had attended the UN sessions since 2002, and today he could see a remarkably favorable position towards Sri Lanka among the international community.


Minister Gayantha Karunathilake said that the world leaders have a tremendous respect for Sri Lanka because our President tells the world, whatever he tells the people at home, whereas previous leaders used to say something at home and a different thing when they are out of the country

I am extremely happy to take part in this 71st Session of the United Nations General Assembly. I wish to bring to the notice of Your Excellencies the current situation in my country. I have been in power for the last 15 months. There are many problems in my country.

We have, in recent months, taken many important steps for socio-economic transformation. Before I came to power, people in my country were living in fear and I ended that period and made the people free of fear, established rule of law and restored democratic rights.

My intention is to make peole of Sri Lanka one of the happiest among the world communities by establishing a knowledge-based society. I am determined to alleviate poverty in my country. For that purpose I have declared 2017 as the Year of Alleviation of Poverty.

In order to improve the living standards of our people, we have to provide better facilities for economic development. I have given the topmost priority to take my country forward by working in cooperation with the United Nations and its agencies and other institutions. We have to make necessary changes to achieve sustainable development. The priority areas of the government include establishment of a knowledge-based economy with new initiatives and creation of a green economy.

As an Island-Nation, Sri Lanka wishes to make maximum utility of sea resources, fisheries and marine resources. All these require new technology and we seek the support of the international community for these purposes. Sri Lanka is a country with free education and free health services and the country has all the basic infrastructure requirements for speedy development.

The world today is full of hate, violence and fear. We must free our people from such hatred and fear and establish a society with moral values. The government is totally committed to reconciliation process to establish lasting peace. That would definitely prevent occurance of another war in our country. Terrorism lasting three decades has ended and now we have undertaken the process of reconciliation among the different communities. We require the support of the international community to successfully face these challenges.

Sri Lanka is a Buddhist country, where Theravada Buddhism is practiced. There are solutions in Buddhist teachings to most of the problems faced by the people in this world. Similarly, those who follow other religions like Hinduism, Islam and Christianity too can find answers to these problems by these great religious philosophies.

I am totally committed to eradicate drugs. As the President of Brazil said this morning, illicit drugs have become the most serious challenge faced by our societies today. Unless we take early steps to stop the menace of drugs we will be faced with a catastrophe of unprecedented magnitude. The harm caused to the people, especially the young students by illicit drugs is very serious. We have to eradicate drugs and ensure that illicit drugs would not reach our countries.

We have taken effective steps to strengthen democracy, rule of law and good governance in our country. We want to create a better country for our people. To achieve these, I need the assistance of the international community.

Different countries have their own unique authentic thinking. We too have such authentic thinkings and visions. I want to create a country, in which our people can live as better humans and I need your support for this endeavour.

I wish to take this opportunity to express appreciation about the services rendered by the outgoing UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. He provided and excellent service to the entire world.

I would like to metion that my desire is to arm the new generation with knowledge and modern technology. I will do my duties and fulfill my responsibilities towards my people and I seek your assistance and blessings of you all for this task.

Thank you

May the Triple Gem bless you!

The 71st Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) commenced today (Sep. 20) at the UN Headquarters in New York.

Leaders and representatives from 193 member countries in the world, including Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena attended the summit, which inaugurated under the patronage of UN Secretary General Ban-Ki Moon.

Inaugurating the session for 2016, Secretary-General delivered the keynote address. The first half hour of the summit was allocated to celebrate the completion of one year since sustainable development goals were introduced.

The Summit is held from September 20 to 26 and President Sirisena will address the 71st Session of the UNGA on September 21st.

This is the second time that President Maithripala Sirisena will address the United Nations General Assembly after assumption of duties as the President. Experts point out that the statement by the President will be significant as a leader who committed himself to build peace and reconciliation, while ensuring democracy, freedom and human rights within the country.

The 71st Session of the United Nations General Assembly is important due to its focus on Refugees and Migrants.

Similarly, U.S. President Barack Obama addresses the United Nations General Assembly for the last time as the U.S. president and UN Secretary-General Ban-Ki Moon who held this position for the last 10 years will deliver his last speech as the UN Secretary-General.

President Sirisena will hold bilateral talks with several leaders in the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.


President Maithripala Sirisena arrived at the John F Kennedy Airport in New York last evening (September 18) amidst tight security as the city suffered a major security threat with an explosive devise going off on the previous day injuring 29 persons.

The President was received at the Loews Regency Hotel by senior Minister of Foreign Affairs Mangala Samaraweera, Deputy Minister of Power and Renewable Energy, Ajith P Perera Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to UN, Dr Rohan Perera, Ambassador in Washington, Prasad Kariyawasam and the officials.

Dr Rohan Perera, speaking to media few minutes before the President’s arrival said that the visit of President Sirisena is of extreme importance to Sri Lanka as the 71st Session of the UNGA is dedicated to review the progress of the programme adopted on implementation of the Millennium Development Goals at the last year’s Summit. The President is also to handover the Sri Lanka’s Notice of Ratification of the Paris Declaration on Global warming adopted at the April 2016 environmental summit held in Paris. Once the Notices of ratification are submitted by a majority of the UN member nations, it will be formally announced at the current 71st Session of the UNGA, Dr Perera said.

The President is scheduled to address the UN General assembly in the afternoon of September 21. He is also scheduled to speak at the High-Level Event on Open Government Partnership with several leading nations to be held at the UN Headquarters on September 20.

He will also meet several leaders for discussions on bilateral relations and international issues. Those who will meet President Sirisena include Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, US Secretary of State John Kerry, Indian Minister of State for External Affairs, M J Akbar, Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, World Economic Forum Chairman Prof Klaus Schwab and Millennium Challenge Corporation President Dana J Hyde.

President Sirisena will also interact with global leaders at the reception host by US President Barak Obama and at the reception and luncheon host by UNSG Ban ki-moon.

The UNO and surrounding areas are under a heavy security blanket after the explosion that took place within hours of the arrival of advance delegations. President Obama and several others will arrive in New York today.

The city of New York is safe and all the security arrangements are in place for the UNGA, the New York Governor declared this afternoon.

Ministers Mangala Samaraweera, Gayantha Karunathilaka, Nimal Siripala de Silva, Arjuna Ranathunga and Faizer Mustafae Deputy Minister Ajith P Perera, Rohan Perera Ambassador in Washington, Prasad Kariyawasam and the Member of Parliament Nalaka Kolonne were among the delegation of the President.

President Maithripala Sirisena left the country today (Sep. 18) to attend the 71st United Nations General Assembly to be held at the UN Headquarters in New York.He left the country at 10.45 a.m. by Emirates 651 passenger flight.The General Assembly will be held from tomorrow (Sep. 19) to Sep. 26. The President will address the General Assembly on Wednesday (Sep. 21).This is the second time that President Sirisena is addressing the UN General Assembly. This also will be the last assembly that the current UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon will participate.Ministers Mangala Samaraweera, Gayantha Karunathilaka, Nimal Siripala de Silva, Arjuna Ranathunga and Faizer Mustafa and Member of Parliament Nalaka Kolonne were among the delegation of the President.

 

Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media Ministry in association with the Department of Government Information will hold an international Conference in Colombo under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena to commemorate the International Right to Information Day.

According to the Minister of Parlimentary Reforms and Mass Media GayanthaKarunatilleke, by now all arrangements have been made to hold this conference at the Jaic Hilton Hotel on September 28 and 29 under the theme “Right to Information and Media Reforms”. About 20 Regional and International foreign delegates from the academia will participate at the event.

The Conference will have two main objectives. First, is the exchange of regional and international experience and technical knowledge on the implementation of the Right to Information Act. This would enable Sri Lanka to implement the Right to Information Act more efficiently and effectively by utilizing the facts and opportunities provided by the Conference. It would be very useful for Sri Lanka to share the experience of South Asian countries such as India, Maldives and Pakistan in overcoming challenges in implementing the Right to Information Act.

The Second objective of the Conference is to organize an effective discussion on necessary mass media reforms for the establishment of a reliable political culture based on democracy and good governance. It is expected to exchange capacities and knowledge of each participating country in expanding media usage through aspects such as media ethics, regulation methods training as well as the use of smart phones. This will provide an opportunity for Sri Lanka to receive knowledge and practical experience of media veterans from South Asia ,Canada and Europe.

Since a public discussion on an Independent Media Commission and a Regulatory Authority is on way the Conference will be a useful source of guidance in that regard.

Local academics in relevant fields as well as media organizations, civil society organizations have been invited for the Conference. The public also has a limited opportunity to participate. Those interested could apply through the websites www.news.lk or www.dgi.gov.lk

Preliminary activities are in progress for the State Media Awards – 2015 organized by the Ministry of Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media in evaluating unique skills, talents and competencies of journalists in realization of the ultimate goal of creating a socially responsible media culture.  

Considering the criticisms leveled against the existing Award Ceremonies in Sri Lanka, a special committee comprising of representatives of state and private media institutions to determine the classification of awards and to formulate awarding criteria transparently in keeping with international standards.  The Award Ceremony will proceed on recommendations of the aforesaid committee.

Creations published  / broadcast in the fields of newspapers, radio and television during year 2015 will be evaluated for these awards. All media institutions operated in Sri Lanka are invited to submit creations for this State Media Awards.