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Mangala resolute against strikers

Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Saturday, 11 August 2018 04:51


  • Tells unions to abandon strike and come to discussion table

  • Appeals to private bus owners to volunteer to provide transport for train commuters

Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera

 – Pic by Sameera Wijesinghe


By Chathuri Dissanayake

Resolute to not give in to the trade unions’ demands, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera yesterday called on the private bus owners to help the Government to provide transport for all rush hour commuters.

“If this unjust trade union action continues, we will take measures to ensure the impact to the public is minimum. We are ready to face it,” he said, adding that the salary increase demand made by the railway trade unions is not a reasonable one.

Samaraweera called on the unions to end the strike and to come for discussions with the Government without further inconveniencing the public.  “If they abandon the trade union action and come to discussion, we are ready to discuss,” he said.

The Minister assured the public that the Government will do everything possible to minimise impact to the public.

“We are taking all possible action to ensure that the public is not inconvenienced by their actions. We have made available extra buses to help with the situation,” he said.

Critical of the trade union action launched by the railway workers, Samaraweera said the strike was launched without any forewarning, in a very unfair manner, inconveniencing the public.

The Minister appealed to the bus owners to register with National Transport Board to provide transportation service to those who take the train to commute to work. The Government is making arrangements to pay the cost incurred by the owners, Samaraweera said.“Please help to provide transport for the train commuters who have valid train tickets for the season for free. For those who volunteer, we are ready cover all associated costs,” he said.

The Finance Ministry is to present a Cabinet paper next week to appoint a commission to look into reforming the salary structures of the entire public service.

“The paper is ready, and once the commission is appointed, they will give recommendations within two months,” he said. Emphasising that the Government is not in a position to give a salary increase as demanded by the railway trade unions, he said that if the demand is granted, then similar demands will be made by teachers, doctors and a host of other professionals in the public service.

“The salary structure of the entire public service will go into a serious crisis if this one demand is met. Therefore, we are appointing a separate committee to take a comprehensive look at the issue,” he told media.


Prices of 95 Octane Petrol and Super Diesel go up


  • Fuel prices revised as per prising formula

Announcing the new fuel prices in accordance with the new pricing policy to revise every month as per the pricing formula, Minister of Finance and Mass Media Mangala Samaraweera said that only the price of 95 Octane Petrol and Super Diesel will change this month.

Accordingly, 95 Octane Petrol will increase by Rs. 2 per litre while the price of Super Diesel has been increased by Rs. 1 per litre.

Accordingly, the new price of 95 Octane Petrol is Rs. 157 per litre while the new price of Super Diesel is Rs. 130.

The prices of 92 Octane Petrol and Auto Diesel will not change, Samaraweera said.

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