Foundation Stone laid for Mahindothaya Technological Faculty of J/ Vembadi Girls High School – 30 June 2014

14548729172_f801ae29af

Foundation stone laying ceremony for the Mahindothaya Technological Faculty was held in J/ Vembadi Girls High School on 30 June 2014.

Principal of the school Mrs.V.Shanmukaratnam headed the event. Chief Minister of Northern Provincial Council Justice C.V.Wigneswaran participated as Chief Guest and laid down the foundation stone.

S.Sathiyaseelan – Secretary to the Ministry of Education, Teachers, Students and Parents also participated in this event.

http://www.np.gov.lk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3008:foundation-stone-laid-for-mahindothaya-technological-faculty-of-j-vembadi-girls-high-school-30-june-2014&catid=9&Itemid=116

Diaspora Lanka Report : 28 September to 31 December 2013 – Part 7

4. Urban planning

4.1 Mannarin Marumalarchi 2022 (the renaissance of Mannar)

Prabakaran, Town Planner, NPPD

Prabakaran, Town Planner, NPPD

In late 2011, Diaspora Lanka and the Urban Council Mannar (UC) instigated a community visioning program to identify a people-centred plan for Mannar City for the next 10 years. Based on the major themes that emerged from the MM22 consultations, eight subcommittees were established to implement the plan: town planning, environment, eco-tourism, business development, education, community programs, women’s development and finance.

Reflections
Due to the resignation in June, 2013 of the staff person responsible for the MM22 project, there has been little follow-up of the committees. The most active committee has been the Town Planning group which has worked consistently throughout that time. For the Mannar Urban Council to really take ownership of this program, DL will possibly need to fund a worker within the Council. Steps have been put in place to build up the following subcommittees in the next few months: education, business and eco-tourism.

Identifying “foreshore” issues

Identifying “foreshore” issues

Next steps
• Write a letter to existing members to determine their ongoing level of commitment to their chosen subcommittee.
• Recruit new members to the three highlighted subcommittees.

How you can help
• Help support one of the three subcommittees by providing expertise in the following areas: town planning, eco-tourism, business development and education.

Continue reading

Educating, empowering and involving Youth

untitledText of a presentation at the World Conference on Youth – 8 May 2014

I am grateful to Aide et Action for this opportunity to speak to you, and even more grateful that they have engaged in a process of international consultation to highlight issues crucial for the well-being of youth. The document they have put together provides a clear and concise account of how the areas initially touched upon in the Colombo Declaration can be fleshed out meaningfully.

Underlying the suggestions are a few basic principles that need continuous emphasis. Inclusivity and involvement, information and awareness, empowerment and equal access, all require greater attention from governments.

To achieve this, I think it is necessary to pursue comprehensive reform with regard to mindsets. Reform is of course central to the agenda of Liberalism, which is the creed I uphold, but I think in this context we should also use another word, which has often been twinned with Liberalism.  I refer to the term Radicalism, which means essentially the idea of getting to the core of things and uprooting whatever is not conducive to progress. It is because Liberalism has often been misunderstood, and thought to stand for only free market policies, that in many areas Liberals associate themselves with Radicals, as in an institution of great energy and commitment, the International Federation of Liberal and Radical Youth. This juxtaposition was sometimes necessary to emphasize the Liberal commitment to inclusive progress.

Liberals do indeed believe in free markets, but they also realize, unlike capitalists and conservatives, that markets are not free unless measures are in place to reduce inequalities, to enhance opportunities and to control power, whether it be political, economic, social or physical. The creation of a level playing field may be an impossible dream, but that does not reduce the imperative to pursue this.

This dream, this ideal, lies at the heart of the Colombo declaration, and the additions Aide et Action have suggested on the basis of their consultations in four continents and 16 countries. The details of the consultation make clear how AEA is well qualified to undertake such a task, given the remarkable work it has engaged in all over the world.

I have seen this system of aid in action in just two countries, India and Sri Lanka, but the confidence of their students, and the initiatives they undertake, make it clear that this is an organization that puts its principles into practice. It is for this reason that, over the last couple of years, I have used much of my decentralized budget to set up Vocational Training Centres in the North to be run by Aide et Action. I should add that I was keen that these be set up in schools, to emphasize the link between academic and vocational education, something that the consultations have stressed is necessary. I am happy to say that the initial snooty approach of the Sri Lankan Ministry of Education to Vocational Training is now changing – though not fast enough for my liking – and I received active cooperation from the authorities, both earlier and now, more recently, from the new Provincial administration.

Continue reading

“English for Young Learners” – Students awarded by Governor – 21 April 2014

english

“English for Young learners” has been a successful program to promote use of English language among young generation.The teaching methods adopted in this program are very productive and user friendly, thus the students are able to understand the theory quickly.”

The students who have completed the “English for Young Learners” – A course conducted through CSR Project of Lanka IOC to the school children in Jaffna were awarded by Governor of Northern Province GA Chandrasiri. A ceremony in this regard was held on 21st April 2014 at Veeramani Iyar Stadium, Kopay Teachers’ College. The Governor participated as chief guest and awarded the students.

Lanka OIC has organized this six – month English Course in partnership with ‘Glorious Jaffna Foundation’. 150 school children who completed this course were awarded with certificates.

Secretary to the Governor L.Ilaangovan, Managing Director of Lanka IOC Dakbala, The Director of Glorious Jaffna Foundation Tharindu Amunugama and The First Secretary of Indian Consulate, Jaffna Suresh Menan also participated at this ceremony.

http://www.np.gov.lk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2898:english-for-young-learners-students-awarded-by-governor-21-april-2014&catid=85&Itemid=20

 

Trilingual Learning Centre declared open by Governor – 21 March 2014

openingA timely act to strengthen the reconciliation process.

“Another promise of Mahintha Chinthanaya has been fulfilled in northern province.Trilingual Language center is the need of the hour for the people of different communities to learn languages other than mother tongue.A timely decision, which will definitely contribute immensely to the reconciliation activities of the government.This will empower the masses in all 3 languages.”

Opening ceremony of Northern Province Trilingual Learning Centre was held on 19th March 2014. Governor of the Northern Province GA Chandrasiri officially declared open the learning center.

Continue reading

Governor’s Trophy – English Debate Competition commenced today – 08 March 2014

“Competitions are conducted to find the best talent among the selected group.This is another important event where the school children who can show not only the debating talent , but also the English language proviciency.”

Governor’s Trophy English Debate Competition commenced on 08th March 2014 at St.John’s College, Jaffna. Governor of the Northern Province GA Chandrasiri participated as chief guest at the inauguration ceremony.

Competitions were held under two categories – junior level and senior level. 24 schools competed in the junior level competitions as well as 24 schools for senior level competitions. All the competitions except final competition have been completed.

28 English language professionals judged the competitions.

Chief Secretary of the Northern Province Mrs.R.Wijialudchumi, Secretary to the Governor L.Ilaangovan and several officials and officers also participated at this event.

http://www.np.gov.lk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2817:governor-s-trophy-english-debate-competition-commenced-today-08-march-2014&catid=108&Itemid=253

19 SLNG Arranges Donation of School Items

Kinder Helper Sri Lanka, a Non Governmental Organization based in Kekirawa, Anuradhapura, on request of the Army donated school items and uniforms worth of Rs. 200,000/= to students of 553 Brigade area.

With coordination of Commanding Officer 19th Sri Lanka National Guard (19 SLNG), 39 students of Veththilaikerny Roman Catholic Tamil Mixed school and 25 students of Veththilaikerny Parameswaran Maha Vidyalaya were handed over the donation by the organization at a ceremony held recently at Veththilaikerny Roman Catholic Tamil Mixed school.

Parents who were present on the occasion were also given packs of dry ration during the function.

President Kinder Helper Sri Lanka Mr. I.O. Venkulan, General Officer Commanding 55 Division Brigadier A. Kariyakarawana, Commander 553 Brigade Colonel S.P.V.S. Subhasinghe, principal of Veththilaikerny Roman Catholic Tamil Mixed school Mr. P. Thiruganathan and students, teachers and parents participated in the event.

http://www.cimicjaffna.lk/Cimicnews_2014_02_17.php

Chess Tournament in Valikamam Education Zone – 09 February 2014

12421091654_feafe11d04

12421089394_0c0d85e6ce

The Governor’s Trophy Chess Tournament for Valikmamam North Education Zone was commenced on 09th February 2014 at Ramanathan College, Maruthanarmadam.  Governor of Northern Province GA Chandrasiri participated as Chief Guest and commenced the competitions.

Governor addressed the gathering. He also explained the mechanism of the chess and discussed relevant things with the arbiters, teachers and students.

Chess Tournament for the Governor’s Trophy has been commenced since 16th January 2014 has been and conducted in all five districts. Presently zonal level competitions reached final stage. Next, the district and provincial level competitions are to be commenced soon.

This competitions are conducted under the guidance and direction of the Governor to develop the skills of the north students.

12420753753_8dca44b235Secretary to the Governor S.Ilaangovan, Assistant Secretary JX Selvanayagam, Assistant Secretary of Jaffna Regional Commissioner Office S.Annadurai also took part in the event.

“Chess makes your life easy” 

Chess  can raise your IQ

Chess has always had an image problem, being seen as a game for brainiacs and people with already high IQs. So there has been a bit of a chicken-and-egg situation: do smart people gravitate towards chess, or does playing chess make them smart? At least one study has shown that moving those knights and rooks around can in fact raise a person’s intelligence quotient. A study of 4,000 Venezuelan students produced significant rises in the IQ scores of both boys and girls after 4 months of chess instruction. Continue reading

SF-(J) Commander Gives 100 Scholarships to Konapulam Children at His First Public Function

2014_01_11_4

Major General Udaya Perera, former Commander of Security Forces Headquarters – (Kilinochchi), assumed duties as the Commander Security Forces – (Jaffna) on Friday (10). He commenced duties in the office signing the first official document at auspicious time after observing religious formalities.

Commander security Forces – (Jaffna) (SF-J) Major general Udaya Perera, a few hours after assuming duties in the office, attended a scholarships award ceremony at Mallakam on Friday (10) afternoon. Under this programme, 100 schoolchildren residing at Konapulam open welfare centre (muham) will receive an allowance of Rs. 500/= for a period of one year as an inducement to continue with their education.

Launching the programme, SF-(J) Commander handed over the passbooks to beneficiaries from low income families of the village. Addressing children and parents gathered at Konapulam Vairavar Temple, where the ceremony was held, Maj. Gen. Perera urged them to take interest in their education giving value to those scholarships they received today. He further expressed his pleasure for being able to attend a community welfare function of this nature the same day he took over duty.

The SF-(J) Commander did not forget to share his views with media personnel and villagers present at the venue. Responding to media, he revealed that government’s fervent hope is to resettle all who lost their lands due to war. He further said that more than 90% have already been resettled in their homesteads and the rest will get lands and shelter in near future.

Rev. Fr. Wasanthan of Inuvil Church of South India, Divisional Secretary Thelippalai Mr. Sri Mohanan and Ms Mathista of Mavadipuram Nadeswara Vidyalaya, a beneficiary, addressed the meeting and admired the effort taken by the Army to enhance education of Jaffna.

General Officers Commanding 51, 52 and 55 Divisions, Commander 513 Brigade, Senior Army officers and villagers were present.

2014_01_11_6

http://www.cimicjaffna.lk/Cimicnews_2014_01_11.php

Our preparations for Geneva

946826684glBy K. Godage

Former Ambassador

I was happy to read that Mr. Lalith Weeratunge and Dr. G.L. Peiris would be going out to Geneva to brief missions of countries in the HRC, whatever briefing/ publicity we can give to what we have achieved so far and what we intend to do will not be a waste of time.

This approach is certainly what is called for, not sending a large delegation during the Sessions to lobby delegates as we did a few years ago; most countries decide on their positions on Resolutions such as those relating to countries such as ours, before the Session commences. Former Ambassadors such as Jayantha Dhanapala. Pallihakkara, Nihal Rodrigo {who is an Advisor to His Excellency] and Bernard Goonetilleke would bear me out.

I have often wondered as to what the government’s strategy is to counter these anti-Sri Lanka Resolutions. In the first instance, as the government is already doing, we need to continue to reach out to the Tamil people in a meaningful manner and encourage the Tamil people to reach out to the Sinhalese and Muslim communities. The Tamil community in particular, along with all other communities of our country must continue to enjoy the hard won freedom in every sense of that word; they also need to feel secure and have opportunities to pursue livelihoods of their choice; another important value for the Tamil people in particular is Education, in this regard I am, aware that those who take the trouble to find out about the progress within the country are more than happy with what the government has done since the war ended, to improve the education facilities in the region. In this regard I would urge the government to continue its good work in spite of attempts by pro LTTE elements to divert its attention and create a rift between minor communities and the government.

The government, I presume, has prepared Documentaries that can be shown to the international community. Such Documentaries, perhaps prepared by foreign companies under our supervision of course, would have greater credence and acceptance. We should also establish a Reconciliation Commission which should be headed by a committed person such as Professor Rajiva Wijesinha, the Advisor on Reconciliation to the President, who is well informed and has worked tirelessly to challenge the baseless accusations made by the pro LTTE individuals and organizations. We should without further delay also establish a local commission with three retired judges of the Supreme Court to inquire into what happened in the last days of the conflict, when we saved the lives of over three hundred thousand civilians.

We could then without doubt, give the lie to the horrendous charge that 40,000 were killed in the closing stages of the war on terrorism. Let us call upon those who are making this wild accusation to come up with proof before the Commission, giving the names of those whom they claim were killed. We could also commission an independent body, comprising respected Sri Lankans from a range of professional fields, to document the history of the war and record the deaths that have resulted from targeted terrorist activity – this needs to include the support lent by any organisations and certain countries to the terrorists, which has enabled them to continue their war against the State. Continue reading