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Airline Pilots’ Guild responds to accusations

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The Airline Pilots’ Guild of Sri Lanka issued a statement clarifying the accusations made on the delay of SriLankan Airlines flights in the recent past.

It said the failure of the Airline management to solve the serious issues that have arisen, had led to this situation.

Ports, Shipping and Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva recently accused SriLankan Airlines pilots of refusing to operate a flight after a first officer on duty had fallen ill.

Responding to these allegations, the Pilots Guild said the Airline requires at least 330 Pilots to function at full capacity for the designated flights.

“However, over 70 Pilots have resigned from the Airline in the last year (2022- 2023) with many more resignations pending due to the issues faced by the Pilots. The Pilots of the Airline have been left in the lurch as a result of a spate of decisions by the Management of the Airline compelling us to be overworked,” it said.

“The severity of the issue was witnessed in the recent incident where there were no Pilots on standby to be assigned to a flight which eventually departed more than 12 hours later than the scheduled time of departure.”

“SriLankan Airlines pays one of the lowest wages well below industry standards to Pilots. Prior to June 2023, the Pilots were paid their salaries at an arbitrary USD capped at a rate which was nearly 40% below the rate of the Central Bank.”

“The cadre of Pilots which should ideally be at 330 now only has approximately 250 as a result of the shortsighted, arbitrary and callous decisions of the Management.”

“The recent issues regarding flights stem from these actions and/or inactions of the Management itself which the Management have continuously refused to pay heed to. We have as a body at all times raised these concerns repeatedly including by way of litigation due to the attitude of the Management of the Airline.”

“We urge that these matters be brought to the notice and the attention of the general public and all stakeholders of the Airline in order to facilitate the issues raised being addressed and resolved,” it said.

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Tourists nowadays aren’t fools – Diana

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State Minister of Tourism Diana Gamage has warned that stern action will be taken promptly against those who are hostile to tourists visiting Sri Lanka.

She was responding to the media over the recent incident where a vendor had been hostile to a tourist over an overpriced Kottu.

Noting that tourists nowadays are not idiots and cannot be fooled, the State Minister urged such persons to refrain from such behaviour without harming the reputation of Sri Lanka as a hospitable, friendly tourist destination as well the livelihood of other such fellow businessmen as well.

Related News : 

Hostile street food owner bailed (Update)

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Complaint lodged over Piumi Hansamali’s possession of Gota’s Range Rover

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Mage Rata organization president Sanjaya Mahawatta today, lodged a complaint with the Illegal Assets Investigations Division, calling for an inquiry into model Piumi Hansamali using the Range Rover vehicle previously used  by former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

“It is clear that an election is near and politicians tend to inject all their saved black money into the upcoming election campaigns and it has become a good time for the people who engage with money laundering activities. 

“Accordingly, we have some doubts on how Piumi Hansamal managed to get the Range Rover vehicle (CBH 1949) which was used by former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

“The question arises whether the Range Rover vehicle was given to the former president or if Gotabaya has given it to Piyumi,” said Mahawatta and further alleged that the model currently resides in a super luxury apartment, owns other properties and leads an exceedingly luxurious lifestyle.

Therefore, there are suspicions that Piumi Hansamali is being utilized for money laundering activities involving politicians’ black money, he charged.

“Therefore, we have lodged a complaint with the Illegal Assets Investigations Division. The initial complaint pertains to the Range Rover vehicle previously associated with former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and its transfer to Piumi Hansamali. This vehicle is estimated to be worth Rs. 100 million. Questions arise regarding how the vehicle came into Piumi Hansamali’s possession, the reasons behind its transfer and how she could afford such a valuable asset while primarily engaged in selling cosmetics. Additionally, it is noted that Piumi Hansamali’s has not made any television appearances lately.

“I personally know several individuals who rely on selling cosmetics for their livelihoods. But they struggle to cover their daily expenses with their modest incomes. However, Piumi Hansamali reportedly spends lakhs of rupees daily and leads a lavish lifestyle. 

“The Mage Rata organization is vigilant over the extravagant spending of politicians during election campaigns and their potential involvement in money laundering activities,” he stated.

“Hence, we anticipate an immediate investigation into this complaint,” he added.

(dailymirror.lk)

(This story, originally published by dailymirror.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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SL hopes to continue discussion with bondholders

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State Finance Minister Shehan Semasinghe has said today (April 17) that Sri Lanka hopes to continue discussion with the bondholders with a view to reaching common ground ahead of the IMF board consideration of the second review of Sri Lanka’s EFF program.

Sri Lankan authorities continue to engage all debt restructuring negotiations in good faith, within principles of equitable treatment among creditors, and with maximum transparency within the norms of such negotiations, he has said.

The full statement of the State Minister is as follows :

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