Joint-mechanism with LTTE only way out, says Kumar Rupasinghe

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 19 April 2005, 05:09 GMT]
Dr. Kumar Rupasinghe, a leading peace activist in Sri Lanka, said Tuesday that the proposed joint-mechanism between the government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE is the only way out in the decision making process to carryout the much-needed rebuilding and resettlement program for tsunami-affected people in the worst-hit North-East region.

Dr. Kumar RupesingheSpeaking to MTV, a private television channel, Tuesday morning with regard to the prolonging bureaucratic barriers in the post-tsunami rebuilding process, Dr. Rupasinghe, who is also the Executive Director of the Foundation for Co-existence, said that "the joint-mechanism should have been agreed upon and come into effect a couple of months ago".

"But it is rather unfortunate that the government is struggling to come to an agreement on the joint-mechanism even after four months," he said.

Commenting on the media reports that some of the International NGOs and NGOs are disappointed with the bureaucratic lethargy and infact have threatened to withdraw assistance to Sri Lanka, Dr. Rupasinghe said that although the INGOs were waiting with their pledged assistance to rebuild houses for the tsunami-affected people, the lands have not been given to them to execute their projects, even in the government-held Amparai and Matara districts.

Meanwhile, a Colombo-based newspaper, Daily Mirror, quoting Deputy Minister of Fisheries, Nihal Galappatti reported today that lethargy and inefficiency in blocking lands by the local authorities has crippled the relocation process of fishing families affected by tsunami, with some donor agencies threatening to withdraw their assistance.

The Deputy Minister of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) has also said that some foreign donors who came forward to build houses for the affected fishing families had been discouraged by this situation.

Sri Lanka's donors, under the umbrella of the World Bank-sponsored Sri Lanka Development Forum (SLDF) is expected to meet in Kandy early next month to review post-tsunami situation in country before considering the releasing of the pledged aid resources.


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