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Tuesday, 7 May 2013

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'ELECTRICITY for 95% OF HOUSEHOLDS'

The massive campaign launched by some elements over the power tariff hike has become a damn squib, said President Mahinda Rajapaksa.

He added that some elements say that they would fight for the relief of householders whose houses have been air conditioned.

"These elements are propagating various opinions over this issue in society," the President said.

He added that the government led by him succeeded in providing electricity to 95 per cent of households though the UNP government provided electricity to 60 per cent only.

"Rural villages have received electricity and roads have been developed in all nooks and corners of the country," he added.

The President was speaking at the International Midwifery Day celebrations at Temple Trees yesterday. This ceremony was organized by the Midwives Association.

President Rajapaksa noted that the governments in the past did not commence power generation projects to meet the increasing demands.

"The low cost power projects which could have been initiated by previous governments, had to be started by us," he said.

The President added that the Government began many low cost power generation projects, such as, the Norochcholai coal power plant and Upper Kotmale hydro power projects.

"Those speaking about the power tariff hike should have a better understanding of these issues," he said.

The Midwives Association recognized the services of its officials at district level at yesterday's function. These officials received special mementos from the President.

Deputy Chief Secretary of the Association Devika Kodithuwakku and Trade Union leader W.A.H. Piyadasa also received special awards from the President.

President Rajapaksa yesterday lauded the tremendous service rendered by the midwives to uplift the health of mothers and infants.

"The Government has been increasing the allocation for the health sector year by year", he said. . He said the Government allocates over Rs. 125 billion for the health sector annually.

The President added that Sri Lanka has achieved top status in the Asian region in terms of provision of quality health service to its citizens.

President Rajapaksa said this achievement can not be made by providing infrastructure facilities to the hospitals alone. He said the country made this achievement due to the professional discipline and extreme commitment of midwives.

"The President added that midwives have never been confined to eight hours of work.. "She goes to the doorsteps of the mothers who require her service", he said.

"Villagers also realize the importance of her service and midwives have earned the honour and respect of the people," the President added.

He added that the dignity of midwives will always be protected under the Government's Mahinda Chinthanaya policy framework.

The President added that 8 out of 9 demands made by the Midwives Association at a function held at Temple Trees in 2011 have already been granted .

He said midwives are responsible for maternal and infant health and have earned the respect from all segments of society for their committed service.

The President added that midwives have never staged protests holding placards at the expense of the mothers and infants under their care. The President commended their professional discipline. He said that the commitment and dedication of mid wives in Sri Lanka have been recognized by international organizations, such as, the World Health Organization.

The President also pointed out that the country achieved the lowest maternal and infant mortality rate due to the dedication and commitment of midwives

"Sri Lanka produced the best family health worker in 2011", he said. President Rajapaksa said that midwives work in close coordination with villagers.

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena, Ministry Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayathilaka, Director General Health Services Dr. Palitha Maheepala and Government Medical Officers Association Secretary Dr. Chandika Epitakatuwa also spoke.

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