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MoH receives Japan funded walk-in cold rooms & nutrition supplies

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The Ministry of Health has yesterday (24) received walk-in cold rooms and nutrition supplies procured by UNICEF funded by the Government of Japan to continue to improve the health of all children.

The cold chain items handed over today are 13 walk-in cold rooms—huge refrigerators capable of safely holding large stocks of highly temperature-sensitive vaccines. The equipment has been installed in Colombo and at Regional Medical Supply Divisions in Gampaha, Kalutara, Galle, Kandy, Kegalle, Anuradhapura, Ratnapura and Badulla districts.

This latest batch of equipment is part of a total contribution of US$ 3 million for several cold chain equipment, including portable vaccine carriers and temperature monitors that were already provided to the Ministry of Health in 2021. The equipment will boost the immunization system, ensuring proper and safe storage of vaccines and availability where they are needed.

In addition, nutrition supplies were also handed over. The supplies are part of a recent contribution of US$ 500,000 to procure micronutrients urgently needed to care for children, carry out screening and provide the necessary follow-up, including counseling for malnutrition.

Mr. Mizukoshi Hideaki, Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka, said, “It is our honour to provide Walk-in Cold Rooms as part of the “Last One Mile Support” by Japan to ensure equitable access of immunization services for all people in need across the island. We hope this equipment will improve the storage and transportation capacity of various maternal and child health vaccines including COVID-19 and help strengthen Sri Lanka’s healthcare system amid the prevailing economic crisis. The nutritional package will contribute to alleviating the lack of access to stable nutrition that many children are facing due to the rapid price hike and shortages of imported commodities under the economic crisis. We hope that nutrition supplies and high-quality counselling care will provide some relief for children with acute malnutrition.”

“The benefits of investing in immunization are obvious, especially for children. This equipment will help to advance Sri Lanka’s great efforts in routine immunization services, including the ability to respond to other vaccine-preventable emergencies like the COVID-19 pandemic”, said Christian Skoog, Representative, UNICEF Sri Lanka. “In regard to malnutrition, it is a condition that can be prevented and treated, and the supplies being handed over today are to help our joint efforts to meet the needs of children”, he added

The Government of Japan has made significant contributions to support the joint efforts of UNICEF and the Ministry of Health in addressing both the long- and short-term health needs of children.

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No COVID-19 deaths yesterday

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No COVID-19 deaths have been confirmed yesterday (29) by the Director-General of Health Services.

Accordingly, the current COVID-19 death toll remains at 16,828.

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Racecourse murder : Boyfriend further remanded

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The university student who was held in remand custody for allegedly murdering his girlfriend with a sharp weapon at Race Course grounds in Colombo has been remanded further.

Taking up the case today (30) Colombo Chief Magistrate Prasanna Alwis ordered him to be further remanded till February 13.

The magisterial inquest into the death was held today before Colombo Chief Magistrate and

A testimony of the deceased’s father was recorded before Chief Magistrate and further magisterial inquiry was fixed for February 13.

The suspect was not produced before Court by prison authorities since he is currently receiving treatment at the Mental Health Unit of prison hospital.

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Constitutional Council approves several judicial appointments

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The Constitutional Council met today (30) in Parliament presided by Speaker and the Chairman of the Constitutional Council – Mahinda Yapa Abeywardana.

Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, Sajith Premadasa, Leader of the Opposition, Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, MPs Sagara Kariyawasam, other council members Dr. Prathap Ramanujam, Dr. (Mrs) Dilkushi Anula Wijesundere, Dr. (Mrs) Dinesha Samararatne were present at the Council meeting held.

MP Kabir Hashim, had informed his inability to attend this meeting due to unavoidable circumstances.

The Constitutional Council considered the recommendation of the President to appoint K.P. Fernando, President of the Court of Appeal as a Judge of the Supreme Court, to the post which fell vacant with the retirement of L.T.B. Dehideniya, Judge of the Supreme Court. The Constitutional Council unanimously approved the above recommendation.

Further the Constitutional Council unanimously approved the nomination of N.B.P.D.S. Karunarathna, Judge of the Court of Appeal to be appointed as the President of the Court of Appeal, and the nomination of Mr M.A.R. Marikkar, High Court Judge to be appointed as a Judge of the Court of Appeal to the resultant vacancies.  

The Constitutional Council further decided to publish the advertisement on newspapers of 1st February 2023, calling for applications for the appointment as Members of the Commissions specified in Schedule to Article 41B of the Constitution. Draft format of the application would be published on the Official Parliament website. The deadline to submit applications is 15th February 2023.

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