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‘New Village – New Country’ two-year development plan – PM

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Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena said that the Batticaloa district has a vibrant multifaceted economy that can cater both to the district and the national economy as well as to enhance exports.

Addressing the ‘New Village – New Country’ National Integration Participatory Development Program held at Batticaloa District Secretariat on Friday (4), he instructed the District Development Council to immediately formulate a development plan for the next two years.

He urged all the communities as well as public servants to extend fullest co-operation for speedy implementation of the development plan.

The Prime Minister said, “I hope that the GA in this development plan, which has to be prepared by the development committee, that a clear development plan framework is established on which we can work on in next two years. It is also an important issue that we have embarked on this programme.

A special priority has been given to food security islandwide. All of us know that in last year there was not only a food security warning within Sri Lanka there was a warning on food security internationally too. The Government was able to relax some of the obstacles that caused impediment for the farmers to engage in better production.

“I feel you would agree with all data and statistics which show that farmers were able to earn income through our harvest over an unprecedented level over the last two years which gave the country further confidence. Initially I would like to thank the farmers of Batticaloa because amidst all the problems they were able to produce a very high harvest. It is an important factor. It also gives confidence to our country internationally. Most of our friendly countries and international organisations have commended this achievement.

The GA will be supporting the livestock and agricultural sector in Batticaloa. Farmers were able to achieve the targets that have been agreed upon. President Ranil Wickremesinghe and the Government are confident that we would be able to reach self-sufficiency in most of the agricultural products. That is why we assemble to appeal to all of you in the Government service to contribute in maximum for the production to reach these targets. This will not only bring rupees to farmers it will also save the dollars that will otherwise have to fall out.

We have failed to bring better livelihood and conditions in these districts. So many issues have been raised in relation to the farmers. We will give due attention to these along with the officials. There are some areas which have to be solved by way of an increased financial crisis. Present situation is better than that of last year.

“In the next budget the President plans that we could make an increased allocation to the districts in order to go through their development. Already insurances have been given by most of the donor countries where the work has been stopped due to the financial crisis will be restored. We look forward to resume from October these rural projects, district projects which were stopped. It will contribute further in a multiplier effect through financial services that won’t be able to benefit from it and the people who are involved in those services and construction sectors.

In addition to that, whatever the complaints I would like to bring to your notice there are our ministries, my secretary, officials and two State Ministers are always available for any other matter to be raised and to be contacted. We will do whatever we could to support these development activities in the district.”

Minister Nazir Ahmed, Governor Senthil Thondaman, State Ministers Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan (Pillayan), Ashoka Priyantha, Janaka Wakkumbura, MPs Rasamanickam Shanakyam, Govinda Karunakaran, Yadamini Gunawardena, Presidential Adviser Suren Batagoda, Public Administration Secretary Ranjith Ashoka, District Secretary Kalamathi Pathmaraja and District officials were present at this meeting.

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