01. Public Security Minister Tiran Alles instructs IGP C.D. Wickremeratne to tighten security near the universities of Colombo, Sri Jayawardenapura and Kelaniya, and to increase night patrolling, following requests by the respective Vice-Chancellors due to rising thefts in the premises.
02. President Ranil Wickremesinghe says “members of the SLPP have expressed their will and given the necessary support to the economic policy of the UNP”; adds support is very important if this country is to recover from the economic crisis; urges all should work together and work hard to build a prosperous country out of bankruptcy.
03. The Education Ministry says it does not issue letters to admit children to intermediate grades of National schools; adds the application must be directly sent to the relevant school via registered post.
04. Self-proclaimed ‘Prophet of God’ Pastor Jerome Fernando apologises to all the Buddhist clergy and Buddhist, Hindus and Muslims if his words by any means hurt their feelings: Fernando, who is under a travel ban over his controversial remarks at a congregation, is currently abroad and yet to return.
05. Sri Lanka registers the highest daily tally of Covid-19 patients and infection-related fatalities on Saturday, with 15 confirmed new infections and 03 deaths: Active cases up to 61; total cases 672,357; death toll 16,864: WHO reports Sri Lanka currently stands at 80 positions out of 231 countries in terms of the number of cases reported since the pandemic’s inception.
06. March 2023 private sector credit records de-growth of Rs.107.6bn, almost doubling from the Rs.57.6bn contraction in February: March quarter financial reports of banks also mirrored dismal private credit conditions: Loans to government from banking system up by Rs.97.2bn; credit to public corporations down by Rs. 118.9bn.
07. South Asian country representative for UN’s WFP Abdur Rahim Siddiqui says South Korea’s support is ‘crucial’ with Sri Lanka mired in a severe food crisis; thanks South Korea and notes WFP’s ‘meaningful partnership’ with the country through the Korea International Cooperation Agency; adds nearly 03 in 10 households in Sri Lanka were recognised as food insecure at the height of the economic crisis since 2022.
08. Agriculture Minister Mahinda Amaraweera says vouchers to the value of Rs. 20,000 per hectare will be given to paddy farmers from today for the cultivation of the ‘Yala’ season: GOSL allocated Rs. 10 billion in the form of subsidy vouchers to 650,000 farmers for the purchase of chemical or organic fertiliser: Move comes in for the slashing of production costs of farmers.
09. “The Voice Sri Lanka,” the Sri Lankan limb of the global singing franchise “The Voice,” declares Rameesh Sashinka aka “Ramiya” as the champion of “The Voice Sri Lanka 2023” at its grand finale.
10. Sports Minister Roshan Ranasinghe makes first communication with World Rugby through a letter dated May 11; says the Sports Ministry is the governing body of sports in SL, and “all sports federations should be registered and recognised under the law of the country”; stresses the National Olympic Committee has no power to issue a letter regarding “a determination made by an international organisation namely Asia Rugby”: The letter backfires and SL Rugby kicked out of World Rugby membership.