ECONOMYNEXT – June 10, 2017, 7:29 pm
President Maithripala Sirisena has taken away some of the functions of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and assigned them to Tilak Marapona, the new minister of Development Assignment.
The cash-rich Employees Trust Fund (ETF) which was under the Prime Minister was also taken away and given to Marapona who will now be responsible, among other things, for the implementation of the ETF Act of 1980.
Marapona will have to assist the prime minister in monitoring and evaluation of national policies. The Prime Minister’s responsibility of coordinating with other ministries on implementation of policies now becomes a function of Marapona’s ministry.
For the first time ever, two state lotteries were assigned to the foreign ministry giving Minister Ravi Karunanayake control over the National Lotteries Board and the Development Lotteries Board (DLB).
Minister Karunaratne, who was shifted out of the finance ministry in the latest cabinet reshuffle, has been closely associated with a DLB-funded university scholarship scheme of his mentor, the late Lalith Athulathmudali.
State banks and the national carrier Sri Lankan airlines remained with the state enterprises ministry of Kabir Hashim.
However, three institutions under the media ministry — the department of government printing, the National Film Corporation and the State Printing Corporations – were taken out and given to Public Administration and Management Minister Ranjith Madduma Banadara.
Minister Mangala Samaraweera who gets additional responsibilities over media subjects under an expanded ministry of Finance and Media will have control over state-run media institutions, including Lake House.