MP criticises president's development policy

[TamilNet, Thursday, 11 February 1999, 20:21 GMT]
The elected representative for the Batticaloa district, Mr.Joseph Pararajasingham, M.P., appealed to the government and the President to allow rehabilitation and reconstruction work funded by the Norwegian government to proceed in all areas of his district. The appeal was made during a debate on the extension of the state of emergency in Parliament today.

Referring instructions issued directly by the President, Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge, that no development work will be carried out in areas not under army control, Mr.Parajasingham said; "I do not know what the logic is behind this classification- army controlled areas and areas controlled by Liberation Tigers? I wish to ask this House and the government whether there was such classification during the JVP insurrection in the south?"

He reminded the House that in the 1994 presidential elections, 95 percent of the votes polled by the PA candidate in the East, were from areas not under the control of the Sri Lanka army.

The Norwegian government has already spent 500 million rupees during the past five years on the rehabilitation and reconstruction of areas in the Batticaloa district, he said.

The Norwegian government has also pledged another 500 million rupees over the next five years, under a new scheme known as DERBA, for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the district.

The President's policy would deprive the Batticaloa people of the funds provided by the Norwegian government, he added.

Mr. Pararajahsingham also appealed to the Inspector General of Police to order an inquiry into the killing of Nallathamby Sabanayagam,50, of Arumugathankuddiruppu, while he was taking his niece to hospital.

This was a clear case of indiscriminate firing and murder of an innocent civilian, he said.

Mr.Pararajasingan also cited several other incidents of disappearances and killings of civilians that had taken place in the East last month.


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