Wednesday, July 17, 2024

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Sri Lanka Original Narrative Summary: 30/06

  1. President’s Secretary E.M.S.B. Ekanayake issues an extraordinary gazette, classifying public transport services as essential: As a result, all passenger and goods transport services, along with the maintenance and provision of facilities for road and rail transport, including roads, bridges, culverts, and railway lines, are now deemed essential services.
  2. The Election Commission directs key institutions like the Government Printing Department, Police Inspector General, and utility boards to prepare for the upcoming Presidential election: Government Printer Gangani Kalpana Liyanage affirms readiness, pending the Election Commission’s official date announcement: Chairman R.M.A.L. Ratnayake aims for a smooth electoral process, following the Commission’s schedule from 14 September to 16 October for the Presidential election.
  3. The Judicial Service Association of Sri Lanka (JSASL) convenes a Special General Meeting in Colombo today to address criticism against the judiciary: District Court Judges and Magistrates gather to discuss the impact of recent remarks on judicial independence, following speeches by the Justice Minister and MPs on 19 June 2024: The Bar Association of Sri Lanka and Lawyers’ Collective advocate for formal complaints, not parliamentary statements, on judiciary matters.
  4. Sri Lanka pledges police gendarmerie and criminal justice experts to the United Nations to combat global security challenges: At UNCOPS 2024, Public Security Minister Tiran Alles affirms Sri Lanka’s readiness, highlighting rising threats like organised crime and gang violence: urges UN deployment of specialised police teams and emphasises Sri Lanka’s commitment to share expertise worldwide, underscoring the nation’s capability at Readiness Level 3.
  5. The Immigration and Emigration Department will extend passports expiring after June 30 by one year, free of charge, ahead of the launch of e-passports in January: The new passports will feature embedded electronic chips: A company has been selected to produce them, aiming to issue around 700,000 annually once operational: Citizens are encouraged to upgrade to the new e-passport format.
  6. The Central Bank reports in June 2024, y-o-y headline inflation in Sri Lanka, as per the CCPI, increased to 1.7% from May’s 0.9%: Food inflation rose to 1.4% from May’s 0.0%, and non-food inflation increased to 1.8% from 1.3%: Month-on-month inflation saw a slight uptick of 0.77% after three consecutive months of decline. Core inflation rose to 4.4% in June from 3.5% in May: Despite these increases, inflation remains comfortably below the 5% target, with CB expecting it to remain so in the near term, aligning with targets over the medium term with appropriate policy measures.
  7. Sri Lanka celebrates welcoming its one millionth tourist of the year, Mr. Paul Roy from Ireland, at Bandaranaike International Airport: Organised by Tourism Sri Lanka and Airport & Aviation Services Sri Lanka Pvt Ltd., the event highlighted the country’s tourism recovery: Tourism Minister Harin Fernando praises the milestone, aiming for 2 million tourists in 2024, noting a 106% increase in 2023 arrivals: Cultural performances showcased Sri Lanka’s rich heritage and hospitality.
  8. Kollupitiya Police imposes a travel ban on Sena Yaddehige, Chairman of Richard Pieris Group, amid allegations of sexual misconduct by a female business analyst: The 39-year-old victim accuses him of abuse at a luxury Kollupitiya hotel on May 07: reports working remotely while he was overseas, and being summoned upon his return: The incident was promptly reported to authorities, with the Chairman reportedly fleeing the country afterward.
  9. Four fishermen from Tangalle die after consuming an ‘unknown substance’ found floating at sea, with two others critically ill and receiving treatment on a Singaporean merchant vessel: The Sri Lanka Navy is investigating the incident, which occurred 320 nautical miles (592.64 km) off the coast: Authorities urge fishermen to exercise caution and avoid consuming unidentified substances.
  10. West Indies women clinch the T20 series 2-1 against Sri Lanka with a thrilling last-over win, chasing down 142 to victory: Hayley Matthews (49) and Stafanie Taylor (33) set the foundation, while Shemaine Campbell’s unbeaten 41 sealed the win: Chamari Athapaththu’s 38 led Sri Lanka to 141/7 earlier, with Matthews named Player of the Series.

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