Saturday 23rd February, 2008

Teacher Unions oppose move tooth and nail
Year 5 Scholarship exam made mandatory; teachers up in arms
The Education Ministry has made the Grade Five Scholarship examination compulsory with immediate effect, Examinations Commissioner General Anura Edirisinghe told The Island yesterday. However, the government’s decision has run into stiff opposition from teacher unions that want that examination scrapped."This exam has placed much pressure and burden on children and parents. That leads us nowhere," General Secretary of the Ceylon Teacher Service Union said. "This should be scrapped from the education system step by step.

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The passing out parade of the first ever foreign troops trained by the Sri Lanka Army Commando parachutists took place yesterday at the Ganemulla Commando Regimental Headquarters. Chief Guest Commander, Maldivian National Defence Force (MNDF), Major General Mohamed Zahir, pins a medal on a Maldivian parachutist. Two Maldivian officers and 20 from other ranks were trained by the Training School of the Commando Regiment, in Ganemulla.
Pic by Kamal Bogoda

  • Explosives detected
    A major disaster was averted when naval personnel, acting on a tip off, discovered 20 kilograms of lethal C 4 Explosives, 23 Electric Detonators and two suicide belts buried in sand at Kerawalapitiya, adjacent to the Colombo-Katunayake Highway, which is under construction, Thursday night, a Navy spokesman said.

  • Transformer blasts cost CEB Rs. 20 mn
    Five recent transformer blasts resulted in a loss of Rs 20 million to the Ceylon Electricity Board, General Manager of the CEB, D. R. Pulleperuma told The Island yesterday. The blast at the unmanned primary sub-station at Mangalaeliya in Mundalam had disconnected electricity supplies to around 1,500 consumers, he said.

  • Between the Lines
    Anxious time in Pakistan
    do not rule out rigging in the Pakistan election. My belief is that the seats the Pakistan Muslim League (Quide), the King's party, and the Muttahida Qaumi Movement have won are far more than their hold or stock in the country suggests. The combined strength of the Pakistan People's Party (87) and the Nawaz Sharif's Muslim League (66) is far less than their popularity. The two should have got two-thirds majority in the National Assembly while they have secured 153.
  • CEB tariff proposals ‘pro rich, anti-poor’
    The Energy Forum criticised the proposed electricity tariff of the CEB calling it a system which will fatten the purse of the rich by emptying the pockets of the poor.In a report titled ‘An Alternative Proposal to the New Electricity Tariff Structure of the CEB’ the Energy Forum agreed that the electricity tariff structure should be revised if the CEB was to recover its losses but said the new structure would hurt the lower and middle income groups more than the affluent.
  • SL financial markets insulated from disturbances
    Sri Lanka’s financial markets have been insulated from the world economy disturbances that underscore the need for good corporate governance, better risk management and compliance in our financial industry. It is also important for us to learn from the bitter lessons experienced by others as our financial services industry too is tempted to provide low quality credit which has been the root cause of the prime issue, Deputy Governor Central Bank of Sri Lanka Dr. Ranee Jayamaha said at a seminar on "Governance, Risk Management and Compliance and the Road map for Financial Services Industry" held recently in Colombo.
  • Keeper Chandimal takes seven
    Aussies eat humble pie

    Sri Lanka’s varied spin attack, led by the left-arm spinner Navin Kavikara, performed a slow strangle act that would have made their senior team proud as they set up a five-wicket win against Australia at the Penang Sports Club. They dismissed Australia for 172 and Dilshan Munaweera helped them gun down the target with more than 12 overs to spare. The victory put Sri Lanka on top of Group C and set up a quarter-final clash against New Zealand, while Australia will play Pakistan, the winners of Group A.

  • Batting crumbles as SL suffer 24 run defeat
    Sri Lanka’s woes with the bat during the Commonwealth Bank Series continued, as the top order collapsed yet again on a two paced wicket in a must win game against Australia here at the MCG in Melbourne on Friday. A splendid effort by the bowlers saw Sri Lanka reducing the hosts to just 184 for seven in 50 overs, but the batsmen failed to show any fight and were reduced to 77 for four in 29.3 overs before a heavy downpour forced an early end to the game, declaring Australia the winners according to the Duckworth/Lewis method.

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    Sri Lankan fans cheer up their team during the one day international cricket match between Australia and Sri Lanka at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Australia, Friday, Feb. 22, 2008.
    (AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill)

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