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'Regrettable to see former leaders joining anti-SL forces'

Presidential Secretary for Parliamentary Affairs Kumarasiri Hettige said that it is quite regrettable to see former leaders of this country in league with anti-Sri Lankan forces and questioned the example such people set for the younger generation.

He made these remarks at the prefects' investiture ceremony of the Nugegoda Samudradevi Balika Vidyalaya on March 16. He was the chief guest.


Presidential Secretary for Parliamentary Affairs Kumarasiri Hettige pinning a prefectís badge on a student. Principal W. A. Ranasinghe was also present

He said, the leadership experience gained during school time gives a lot of strength in life. Leadership qualities have to be exhibited through deeds. Not everyone can become a leader. It is a responsibility. This country has had some leaders who did not fulfill their share of duties. If they did, we would not have had to suffer a prolonged war for three decades.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa, on the other hand, is an ideal leader who set a prime example of good leadership to the younger generation. He is a national hero. He made dawn the freedom that we all enjoy today. If not for him, this country and this nation would have been destroyed. His immense will-power and correct vision helped him to overcome both domestic and global challenges. No one without these qualities can become a leader.

A defining characteristic of a leader is that his actions speak louder than words. That is how he has been able to set a prime example in terms of everything. Children should study his character and learn a valuable lesson about leadership that would one day make them great leaders, he said.

"Even after vacating the presidential office, one's patriot cannot waver. Some ex-leaders of this country have sided with anti-Sri Lankan forces and it is very regrettable. Everyone should love their parents. If you forget your beginnings you are on the path of decline. You cannot expect one who does not love his/her parents to love his/her country or society. These are great values," he said.

Hettige said, it is the obligation of the older generation to advise children on these issues. "Today it has become a challenge to give proper guidance to children. The reasons are many and parents certainly can't wash their hands clean of this situation. If the child is not of good character that child is not only a threat to him/herself but also to the society at large. At some places of society discipline is in steep decline and schoolchildren are also affected by this phenomenon. In some schools discipline is almost pristine and in others it is nearly non-existent. It is not fair to blame it all on either the government or the Education Ministry.

Samudradevi Balika Vidyalaya is in a high position today because of the capable leadership. We need more and more such principals in the country who can set an example for other schools as well.

About 54 percent of the country's population is female. They claim a very impressive position in terms of literacy as well where 90 percent of them are literate. Even the majority of University students are female and the percentage is 58. Women also occupy a lot of positions of importance and it is a light to the country. Our daughters should follow suit and even aspire for better things. But also remember that an education devoid of values is meaningless.

Finstein once said "Science devoid of religion is an infertile land. The supreme meaning of life is to devote one's self of others." This is a very important statement, which we should meaningfully take.

A massive move to rebuild others in the society is much called for. If this does not happen, our children will be deprived of a beautiful future. The cell phone, even though it has served well in communication, has done much damage to children.

If this continues, the society will be full of people with twisted minds. Children should make education their first priority. Going to a university alone dues not make you a good human. We can see that some university students today are forgetting their original goal. Never consider them as examples.

The Jaffna University does not have posters, picketing or demonstrations. Take an example from those students about how to realize your goals.

"Think, how children of the North tire themselves for their education. We can expect an increase of the number of academics from the North in future. They are also treasures of this nation.

No matter which ethnic group you belong to, if you are patriotic and humane, there is no need to have any fear over the future. If this dream is realized we all can die happily and in relief. Self-satisfaction is the most treasured wealth of a teacher. We salute those teachers who genuinely stand for it.

School Principal W.A. Ranasinghe, students Sumudu Walpola, Duladari Jayakody and Kithsiri Ramesha also spoke. Nugegoda Divisional Education Director W.A. Perera, parents of the students and a number of teachers were also present.

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