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P-TOMS - be firm and go ahead

The President should be congratulated for the very bold and firm decision to go ahead with the implementation of the Joint Mechanism (P-TOMS) despite protest demonstrations and fasts unto death and at the risk of the defeat of the government. The President should now go ahead to implement this mechanism with the least delay. The programme for rehabilitation and reconstruction not only in the North and East but also in the South has been severely affected by the much needed foreign aid being held back. This is a humanitarian issue, and politics should be completely kept out.

All the major political parties should set aside their differences for the time being and refrain from attacking or criticizing each other and go all out to support the mechanism and not allow pressure groups or extremists to block this programme in any way.

There is absolutely no need to go to Parliament for approval prior to signing the agreement. This will be another delaying tactic. This mechanism should also be a stepping stone towards achieving a lasting political solution and peace, harmony and stability. The country just cannot afford to go back to war.

Chauvinism, whether Sinhala or Tamil should be completely wiped out. The need is great. We cannot afford to delay this process any longer.

NIMAL BHARETI - Mount Lavinia

Charismatic leader

We have seen the nation having a decision-making President in the country. Her bold decision on Post-Tsunami Operational Management Structure (P-TOMS) is the first step but a giant step in the road to peace in the country. Had our earlier leaders taken this bold step today the country would have surpassed the development of Japan. This is a problem faced by two linguistic people of this country i.e. Sinhala and Tamil speaking communities.

There is no religious entity for communities to request for their domination in P-TOMS Council. In Sri Lanka Muslims speak either Tamil or Sinhala as their mother tongue. Further, it is only a re-construction process mechanism envisaged to rebuild the Tsunami-affected areas of Sri Lanka. P-TOMS has the support of more than 85% of the population (UPFA, UNP and TNA).

The President has taken a right decision to appease the majority and primarily has taken the nation into her heart. It is not selling, betraying or dividing the country.

A boneless tongue could be twisted to create chaos in the country. Who are the opposing sections in the community. They are the minority party who were elected purely due to the proportional representation provided in the election law.

If not for this, none of the minority parties would be in parliament today and there would not be such an outburst by few people born after the introduction of Sinhala Only policy in the country who do not know any other language other than the two national languages. This lot cannot understand much of the history of this country and the united Sri Lanka we had prior to the implementation of Sinhala Only policy.

Most of the parliamentarians were then educated in colleges in Jaffna without any differences or bias in their minds.

Today due to the advancement of technology and communication, specially internet and e-mail, all citizens in Sri Lanka tend to learn English and without English they feel approach to world communication and acquiring knowledge through internet is lost. Computer eagerness is making the divided Sinhala and Tamil speaking linguistic citizens to understand each other.

In towns and cities parents are sending their children to computer classes, since they know without computer knowledge there is no future for the children.

In another ten years, in my view, the problem of this country would be solved automatically since you will find more people speaking or learning English and would give step-motherly treatment to Sinhala and Tamil lanugages. When you analyze the P-TOMS Council, it has focused a linguistic stand.

The citizens of this country should understand the decision of President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga as the correct decision to the uplift of this country. The President had done this without any expectation sacrificing her political future for the betterment of the future generation. She is worth to be considered for a Nobel Prize for Peace for 2005.


Remarkable courage

I think as a Tamil person I owe to congratulate honourable President of Sri Lanka in coming forward and signing the P-TOMS (Joint Mechanism of Tsunami aid).

She has shown tremendous courage in fighting off oppositon and have taken a step in the right direction to give peace to our land.

Once again thank you and I call on everyone to follow our leader's path in showing guts and remarkable courage in order to restore our beautiful land in the middle of the Indian ocean.


Judiciary in our country

Maintenance of rules of action established by the authority is vital if the country is to move forward without any restrictions. Breaking this system adversely affects the country thereby escalating the number of crimes and civil disobediences as well as bribery and corruption. The judiciary is the only establishment which is responsible to try and decide questions of law or guiltiness. All law-abiding citizens in our country respect this excellent body with a view to encourage them to discharge their duty impartially.

In accordance with the Constitution of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, the position of the Chief Justice is very important as he has to be responsible for the entire function of the judiciary and magistrates. As such all decent citizens in the country must respect him by demonstrating their confidence of the judiciary in public.

However the law-breakers as well as hired media personel condemn the Judiciary including the Chief Justice thereby attempting to make the decent people scoff at that excellent position with a view to gain petty political advantages. One of the most significant reasons for this to happen is the fact that those who are scared for their pending trials want to destabilize the smoothly running judiciary system in a bid to obtain sentences biased to them.

It is evident that if this ill-fated exercise continues furthermore the confidence, trust and respect of the judiciary built by the ordinary people will no longer prevail. Therefore, in order to protect the judiciary from heinous attack, those who are responsible for this type of acts must be punished no sooner for the future prospect of the country.


'Water Board poverty trap'

When UN agencies like UNICEF and WHO plan intervention for supply of safe drinking water in a developing country, decision making is based on:

1. Percentage of urban population, current and projected.

2. Distribution of normally drought affected non-urban areas.

3. Areas where water borne diseases are endemic.

This is the sane, non-commercial approach to water supply current in modern, urban and country planning, the Chairman of the NWS and Board declares categorically that "only 29% of the population has pipeborne water and the balance 71% has to be supplied accordingly."

This philosophy has obviously resulted in the costly and widely scattered infrastructure and resultant overheads that the Board is now attempting to load on its genuine domestic consumers who have no alternative source of water.

Spending, according to the Chairman, "collosal amounts of money to purify water taken from rivers and lakes, construction of purification plants and laying networks of pipes for distribution of water and electricity for pumping" will not be necessary if the UN targets for safe drinking water are used as guidelines and not clumsy attempts to cover the entire country with Water Board Pipelines in a monstrous hybridization of commercialism and imbecility.

Estimates of water needs of a clean, healthy, household of six individuals is closer to 40 units/month than to the figure of 15 units/month given by the Board for its poverty trap. This on the new tariff will cost about Rs. 1500/month, whereas most households in this category have a monthly income of only about Rs. 6000/month. This is a vivid exposure of poverty creation because having spent one quarter of its income on water such households will be driven to slow starvation.

U.K.- Nugegoda

Studying under trees

NW/Maho/Giri/Rajanganaya Tract - 03, Dharmasoka Kanishta Vidyalaya is a school belonging to Maho educational zone of the Kurunegala District. It's also a difficult area school that produces students with best results at Year 5 scholarship examination every year. For the present, there are classes from Grade 1 to 10 and approval has been given to conduct classes up to ordinary level. But, the students have to face severe difficulties in carrying on with their studies due to lack of sufficient space.

At present, there are only two halls and a makeshift classroom made by PTA of the school and this space is not at all sufficient for students. As a result, students have to study under the trees.

Although a request for a new hall has been made several times, the relevant authorities have not taken action in this regard. Therefore, it's their duty to consider this and provide the school with necessary space facilities.

L. W. GAMINI C. KUMARA - Colombo

Central Road in a mess

This is the road that most of the buses enter to come to Colombo but since a month or more, daily, there is a big traffic block starting from near the clocktower, sometimes the block starts even from the colour lights at Armour Street.

The main cause for this traffic block is that in the middle of Central Road it has been dug for the lying of pipelines and after lying of pipelines the huge holes on the road has not been properly closed, the road is in a state of mess, full of holes, mud and water, thus preventing buses and other vehicles running smoothly.

I am travelling from Kandana, it takes only half an hour for the bus to reach Colombo, but it takes another half an hour for the bus to reach the Pettah Bus stand from Central Road (only one halt) due to the block at Central Road and due to this we are daily late at office. I request the authorities concerned to take the necessary steps to immediately repair the road which is used by many bus routes coming to Colombo.

Rossana Saram - Kandana



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