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Friday, 3 July 2009

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Government Gazette

Assistance to IDP students

The move by the Government to provide all facilities to students in the IDP centres to continue with their education shows that it is keen to ensure as normal an environment as could be obtained under the circumstances to prepare the population to pick up their lives once they get back to their familiar surroundings in the near future.

It was only last month that the Government provided all the facilities to IDP students of the Jaffna university to attend their lectures while make shift classrooms were also installed to conduct lessons for others within the camp premises with teachers and other instructors drawn from among the IDPs.

Now the Examination Department has made all arrangements to assist student candidates of the upcoming AL examinations to sit their exams by having seven examination Centres at an equal number of IDP Centres in Vavuniya. The Examination Department has taken all necessary steps to provide students with all their requirements such as National ID cards for the exams. That is not all, they are also to be provided with past papers to familiarize themselves with the nature of the question papers. In short they will be appropriately equipped to face the examination in as normal an environment as could be possible. Not only that, teachers at IDP Centres would also be called upon to serve as invigilators at the exams. Some 900 students at IDP Centres are due to sit the examination.

This hardly accords with the picture painted by certain Western media which equated these IDP Centres to concentration camps. To our knowledge jews in Hitler's concentration camps did not have the luxury of sitting examinations. They were simply gassed to death. It is hoped at least now these elements would realize their folly and put the record straight. True, these students may not have had the ideal environment to prepare for the examinations while held as they were in the jaws of the LTTE. But the Government it has to be conceded has gone to lengths to ensure they are brought back onto familiar ground so they may gradually pick up the pieces of their lives.

With the customary resourcefulness, enterprise and drive of the Jaffna student, there is no doubt they would seize this opportunity to claw their way back to the prominence they once enjoyed in the academic sphere. Certainly with the Northern Spring program earmarked to rebuild all damaged schools and educational centres in the North opportunity beckons the Northern student population that were denied to them for over three decades. For nothing spurs on the Northerner than the attainment of academic distinction.

This is also an ideal time for our education planners to think of using the undoubted skills and expertise of the academics of Jaffna who served in schools of the South in the not too distant past. We should strive to coalesce with the North in all sectors as much as possible to rekindle that past when race and ethnicity did not figure in the equation. The field of education is one such avenue where this rapport could be effectively built to foster peace and harmony. This could be augmented by programs of interaction in the field sports, arts and culture. The Government must right now draw up a clear cut plan to utilize all the human resources of the North that were denied to us all these years. It is part of the fruits of victory that was attained at great cost.


Peace dividends

The defeat of terrorism has brought Sri Lanka many dividends but none so important as business confidence as all indications point to. In our Business pages yesterday we carried a news item which stated that the LMD Nielsen Business Confidence Index (BCI), Sri Lanka's only barometer of business confidence, has made a quantum leap of 72 basis points which is the highest jump on record. The LMD Magazine states "Business people are euphoric about the LTTE's crushing military defeat at the hands of Security Forces. The investment climate too had taken a turn for the better", it adds.

Complementing this positive indicators the Sri Lanka's Port too have recorded a 9.5 percent growth while at one of the top ten Chinese Trade Fairs there was rousing response for Sri Lankan products with 58 Lankan exhibitors who showcased the best of Sri Lanka tea, gems jewellery and other items drawing keen interest of buyers.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa has all the reasons to be pleased with the way things stand for he never allowed the country's economy to suffer due to the war. Now it is time to seize on the positive trend vis a vis Sri Lanka and draw up a master plan for luring more and more investors with the North and East opening up vast opportunities.

The end of the war no doubt is going to open up a plethora of investment avenues and if the CPI index is anything to go by the country would very soon have investors swarming here to grab the opportunities. In the past it is no secret that foreigners gave a wide berth to Sri Lanka in the wake bombs and explosions in the capital city. With this threat no longer there, there is no knowing the economic benefits that could accrue to the country. Immediate plans should therefore be drawn up to get all sectors active to prepare for a certain influx of foreign investors with all signs of a boon time for Sri Lanka with the end of the war.

Ananda College

The traditional birthplace of patriots:

On this historic occasion of felicitating the patriotic heroes of the Defence Forces who have rid the country of terrorism, it is opportune to trace the historical growth of our Cadet corps.

Full Story

The International Community and their Agenda on Sri Lanka - Part III:

Impact of media on masses

The net effect of this one-sided barrage of propaganda on the part of the Western INGOs will only serve to weaken the GOSL arm of the conflict with concomitant rejuvenation of the non state party, thereby prolonging the conflict.

Full Story

National security, the national interest and the 13th Amendment

There is nothing that our enemy, the Tiger international network and the pro-Tiger, pro-Tamil Eelam Tamil Diaspora would like better, than to see a gap open up in the partnership between Sri Lanka and India; a gap that they will seek to manipulate in consonance with their Western patrons and friends.

Full Story

 

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