May Day on three different days

21 April 2018 11:44 pm - 13     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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May Day in Sri Lanka will be celebrated on three different days this year with trade unions and political parties planning to celebrate it on May 1, May 6 and May 7.

The UNP has already announced that it would hold its May Day rally on May 6 at Sugathadasa Stadium while the joint opposition is to have its rally in Galle on May 7. Some trade unions including the Ceylon Mercantile Workers Union have said they would celebrate it on May 1.

Meanwhile, trade unions are up in arms over yesterday's gazette notification issued by Home Affairs Minister Wajira Abeywardene to cancel the May Day holiday on May 1.

The Government Information Departmentsaid the subject Minister issued the gazette notification as per the powers given to him under the Holiday Act 29 of 1971 and that May 7 will be declared a public and Bank holiday instead.

The statement also requested the private sector to declare a holiday on May 7.

Ceylon Mercantile Workers Union Deputy General Secretary S. Nadesan said his union was planning to file legal action against the move on the basis that shifting the May Day from May 1 to May 7 violates the constitution.

“Constitution clearly guarantees the right of assembling and expressing. This right is guaranteed for workers as well,” he said.

Besides he said the most venerable Maha Nayaka Theras did not issue any statement asking for the postponement of May Day though the government decided on it.

Inter-Company Employees Union President Wasantha Samarasinghe said the government has no right to cancel the public and bank holiday on May 1.

“Having May Day processions and rallies on May 7 is acceptable but we cannot agree with the cancellation of the holiday. The right to stay away from work on May 1 was a right which was won by the workers all over the world for themselves and not a right granted by the Sri Lankan government to the Sri Lankan people,” Mr. Samarasinghe said.

He said his union would decide on the action it intends taking action against the change in the May Day holiday. (Yohan Perera)

  Comments - 13

  • Jagath Leanage Sunday, 22 April 2018 08:49 AM

    What a joke . May day is a day which falls on every 1st. No body can change it . If somebody trying change it, he or she will become a JOKER .

    Ravin Sunday, 22 April 2018 06:10 PM

    FYI : Here in Australia its on 7th May too. It can differ from state to state as well. In Queensland they took it in October few years ago. But nobody protest against date changes because at the end of the day it's holiday.

    Dagwood Sunday, 22 April 2018 07:47 PM

    May, Hey or Hay day? What is necessary is to give the low income workers an opportunity to improve their livelihoods.

    Perumal Sunday, 22 April 2018 09:30 AM

    Sri Lanka is too big a country; so celebrations like this must be held on three days at least. And General and Presidential elections too must be staggered at least for 3 days.

    shiran yatagama Sunday, 22 April 2018 10:15 AM

    All earthly activities should be secondary to Religious activities. Many seek the God, when they or their loved ones are grasping for breath on a machine. So be conscious of what you should prioritizebut i take my hat off to those who do not believe in the Divine, and will stay so, when they or their loved ones are grasping for breath on a machine.

    Dee Sunday, 22 April 2018 02:01 PM

    May Day! May Day! May Day!

    Dedunu Sunday, 22 April 2018 03:17 PM

    Sri Lanka needs immediate military intervention to rule the country for several months till general election, uneducated politicians from various parts from island destroying economy of the country, passing GCE OL should be minimum qualification for MPs, GCE AL for ministers, president can be a uneducated man from street, but without executive powers!

    Srilankan Sunday, 22 April 2018 03:46 PM

    Houston We Have a Problem!!!! Sri Lanka May Day!! Sri Lanka May Day!! Sri Lanka May Day!! Sri Lanka Toyya!

    Rohan Sunday, 22 April 2018 04:14 PM

    We have become a laughing country ,joker country in the world. We cannot carry out trade and communications with the rest of the world on May Day. What a mess !

    TJ Sunday, 22 April 2018 04:28 PM

    This clearly shows that we still remain a divided people

    Unchiikun Sunday, 22 April 2018 06:56 PM

    May Day is a workers day. Do Sri Lankans work and do they qualify. Most shouting for holidays are not real workers. They are just political pawns.

    Rufus Norton Sunday, 22 April 2018 07:34 PM

    This Government has become a circus with more clowns than artists and has become a big joke in the international world. They made an issue of May Day which is commemorated all over the world on May 1st. Buddhist prelates have not contributed in any way to the development or progress of this country. This is the reality whether anyone likes it or not.

    Sangaralingham Monday, 23 April 2018 08:57 AM

    May Day workers day. We all must workers who helped us to build nation roads homes schools railways etc etc. That day is may 1st every year for many years


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