President Maithripala Sirisena vested with the students of the Jaffna University the newly established Reverse Osmosis Water Systems at the University premises, yesterday (02).

The President, who visited Jaffna to attend the closing ceremony of the 42nd National Games participated at this event at the university.

The Water Osmosis machines were provided following a request made by the university students. Two more such machines will be installed in the future.

The President also engaged in a cordial discussion with the students.

Mahinda Gammanpila a former Ministry Secretary was appointed as the Chairman of the Right to Information (RTI) Commission by President Maithripala Sirisena. Director of the Government Information Department Ranga Kalansooriya said the appointment was made 30th of september. According to him, S. G. Punchihewa, T. Selvakumaran, Salim Marzook and Kishali Pinto Jayawardhana had been appointed as the members of the Commission. 

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe met the Sri Lankan and New Zealand business community in New Zealand and invited them to make use of the investment opportunities in Sri Lanka, which is becoming the economic hub in the Indian Ocean.

Addressing the Sri Lanka – New Zealand Business Council on 1st October in Auckland, New Zealand, the Premier emphasized the importance of the new economic market and the new productions.

He believed that the commercial and industrial affairs between both countries could be further strengthened with the establishment of the proposed High Commissions. Prime Minister explained the way of receiving the new technology from New Zealand towards the agriculture, fisheries, animal food, and tourism sectors.

Ministers Sagala Rathnayake, Harin Fernanado, State Minister Sudarshani Fernandopulle, and Deputy Minister Harsha De Silva also participated.

A consultative meeting on the implementation of the RTI Act was held at the Ministry of Parliameraty Reforms and Mass Media sep.30th with participation of the visiting international RTI experts and some local civil society experts under the chair of Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media Minister Gayantha Karunathilleke.

The meeting extensively discussed the strategies on implementation of the ACT.

"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.