Assure government employees in Vanni their safety – Ki’linochchi GA
[TamilNet, Thursday, 03 July 2008, 02:42 GMT]
"If attacks and assassinations of government employees continues, the government services in Vanni will be completely crippled in the near future," N.Vethanayagan, Ki'linochchi Government Agent (GA) said, speaking at the protest rally held in Ki'linochchi Wednesday morning to condemn the brutal killing of N. Nanthakumar, Divisional Secretary (Assistant Government Agent) of Thu'nukkaay division of Mullaiththeevu district in a Claymore attack carried out by the Deep Penetration Unit (DPU) of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA).
N.Vethanayagan, Ki’linochchi Government Agent (GA) speeking
Hundreds of Government officers in Ki’linochchi district including Medical officers wearing black bands assembled Wednesday morning 8:30a.m. in front of the office of Ki’linochchi AGA and then went in procession reaching Ki’linochchi Government Secretariat at 10:00 a.m. to stage a protest meeting condemning the killing of AGA Nanthakumar.
The meeting was presided by Dr.Sathyamoorthy, Ki’linochchi district Medical officer and Medical Superintendent of Ki’linochchi Government Hospital.
At the commencement of the meeting a memorandum prepared by the Government employees was handed over to Ki’linochchi GA by Dr.Sathyamoorthy .The Tamil version of the memo was read by Mrs.Manimegalai, Government secretariat officer while the English version was read out by Kuurkularajah, Zonal Director of Education.
The meeting commenced after observing a minute of silence for the Government employees and civilians killed in the recent times.
The excerpts of the speech by GA Vethanayagan follow:
"We face huge obstacles in discharging our duties in this district and the situation has become more difficult after the slaying of Thu'nukkaay AGA Nanthakumar. Many people have been displaced due to military activities and we are facing great difficulties in providing their needs .The government officials in this district are now afraid to report for duty. The officials who have been serving the public day and night are now hesitating to perform their duties.
"If this situation continues all the government services in this area will soon be crippled. Unlike those serving in the outside districts with all facilities, here the government employees are providing efficient service to the public under very difficult circumstances. With the added threat of claymore attack, it might soon become impossible to provide adequate service to the general public. This situation deserves to be condemned and it is the duty of the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) to provide protection for all of us. The present difficult situation should change."
Dr.Sathyamoorthy hands over memorandum to Ki’linochchi GA, N.Vethanayagan.
Dr.Sathyamoorthy speaking at the meeting said "A number of government officers serving in Vanni have already been brutally killed .The long list of those slain in this district includes school students, general public, principals, teachers, doctors and hospital employees. Now it has included our Thu'nukkaay AGA.”
"There are more than four lakhs of people living in Vanni and thousands of Government employees serving them. These people have the right to reside here and we have the right to serve them."
"This memorandum will be first handed over to Ministry of Public Administration and then to all the Embassies,” Dr.Sathyamoorthy said.
Sathyaseelan, Kandaavalai AGA in his speech condemning the killing of AGA Nanthakumar said:
"All the government employees serving in Vanni at present are working under very difficult conditions. A number of government employees are being killed continuously. Recently, there was a claymore attack on the vehicle of Nedungke'ani District Secretary and though he survived his driver lost his life and the vehicle was completely damaged. A number of ambulances have also been subjected to claymore attacks killing a number of patients, nurses and doctors. Apart from these indiscriminate attacks many government employees together with the general public have lost their lives during aerial bombardments and artillery attacks. The government officers of this district rejecting the comforts and facilities in other districts have come forward to serve the Vanni public under trying circumstances and the safety of these employees should be assured.
"Last Sunday our Thu'nukkaay AGA was brutally murdered. Though it was a Sunday he went to his office for duty and what is painful is that he used his own motor bicycle leaving behind his official vehicle, stating that the official car might be subjected to claymore attack, Mr.Sathyaseelan said.
Ketheeswaran, Planning Officer, Ki'linochchi Government Secretariat, addressing the participants said, “Hundreds of government employees have gathered here ignoring their normal duties to participate in this meeting condemning the killing of AGA Nanthakumar and to ensure our safety. The safety of all us who work according to the rules and regulations of GOSL must be ensured. The killing of Thu'nukkaay AGA has deeply saddened of us here and at the same time has caused fear among us. As a result we are now awakened about our safety.”
“Many government employees are now hesitant to accept government instructions to travel to far off places. The slayings are now being directed against humanitarian workers who never caused any hindrance to military activities or any security related matters. There are many government establishments in places ranging from villages up to the cities and the government must provide encouragement for the employees to work efficiently. However, the situation prevailing today has instilled fear and the question arises who will take responsibility to provide safety for us,” he added.
Continuing further about the rapidly deteriorating situation Mr.Ketheeswaran posed a question “This is not only humanitarian issue but is also duty related problem. Are we in a position to carry out all the instructions of our GA? A faithful servant of the people has been killed in a barbaric manner and such inhuman acts should be stopped immediately.”
Mr.Rajendiram, the Principal of Ki'linochchi Bharathy Vidyalayam, recounting the horror of 16 civilians killed about two months ago said: "We are gathered here wondering how we can eradicate the fear prevailing amidst us. Our school has recently faced a great tragedy and it should not be viewed just as a tragic incident .16 civilians were killed along Murigandy road and they should not be considered as just 16 lives."
"The list of those who lost their lives includes students, parents of our students and school employees. There are 12 students in our school who lost both their parents in a single day. Seven students have lost their mother while four have lost their fathers .The students have become orphans due to these horrific incidents.45 days have passed from the time of this tragic event and our school community is yet to recover from the sorrow. Now a sincere government servant has been murdered at the prime of his life."