November 21, 2018

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    DECISIONS TAKEN BY THE CABINET OF MINISTERS AT ITS MEETING HELD ON 27-09-2016 Featured

    September 30, 2016

    01.    Construction of a jetty at Naval dockyard Trincomalee     (Document No – 13)


    The Trincomalee harbour, which is one of the deepest natural harbours in the world and the second deepest harbour in Asia, could not be developed due to terrorist activities in recent past. The largest camp of Sri Lanka Navy is situated here and its naval dockyard is home for Eastern Command of Navy and for the Naval and Maritime Academy. Construction of a jetty to facilitate anchoring of bigger ships has begun in 1990 but has discontinued due to various reasons. The navy is expecting to achieve 04 larger ships within 2017-2019 for increasing patrols in Sri Lankan coastline. Hence, the proposal made by H.E. the President Maithripala Sirisena, in his capacity as the Minister of Defence, to construct the proposed jetty of 220m long and 20m wide in the Trincomalee dockyard with an access bridge to facilitate the anchoring of larger ships, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    02.    Building and maintaining of buildings in public and semi government institutions as green buildings (Document No – 14)


    Our forefathers have built their shelters to suit the tropical climate in simple plans and good quality. However, recently they buildings are being built imitating foreign buildings without considering the climate in Sri Lanka and they are based on artificial light and air-conditioning as they have no access to natural sunlight and air. This has caused many environmental, economic and technological issues. Buildings designed to use energies and resources efficiently and built with environmental friendly material and techniques are called green buildings and they are vital to achieve sustainable development. Accordingly, the committee appointed to make recommendations on converting buildings in public institutions to green buildings has prepared 'Green Building Guidelines' with the agreement of relevant ministries. The proposal made by H.E. the President Maithripala Sirisena, in his capacity as the Minister of Mahaweli Development and Environment, to implement these guidelines, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    03.    Filling of existing teaching vacancies     (Document No – 16)


    There should be an ample number of teachers in government schools to affirm equal access to qualitative education. However, there is a deficit of 22,500 teachers in the island. Sufficient teachers or resources have not been provided for rural schools to teach science, maths and English. As a solution to this issue, it has been decided to recruit youth who have passed AL and qualified to university entrance after completing a degree of Bachelor of Education (Science) or Bachelor of Education (Arts) from a private university approved by the Ministry of Higher Education and Highways to the teaching service in addition to graduates from government universities and diploma holders of Teachers Training Colleges. The government will grant a loan of Rs. 275,000 for selected youths through a bank and after completion of the degree they should serve 10 years in a school where a vacancy exists in a selected area. If they serve for 10 years as mentioned above, the loan granted for them will not be collected. Accordingly, the proposal made by Hon. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, in his capacity as the Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs, to recruit 5000 youths as Science and Maths Teachers as its first stage, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    It has also decided to authorise the Ministry of Education to expeditiously recruit graduates to solve the deficit of Science Teachers in government schools.


    04.    Implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding proposed to be signed between Sri Lanka and Pakistan regarding youth development (Document No – 17)


    Signing of the above MoU has already been approved by the Cabinet it was prepared by including amendments proposed later by Pakistan. The proposal made by Hon. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, in his capacity as the Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs, to sign the above MoU between the Ministry of National Policies and Economic Affairs in Sri Lanka and the Ministry of Interprovincial Coordination in Pakistan, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    05.    Affirm protection in unprotected railway crossings    (Document No – 20)


    There are 676 unprotected railway crossings in Sri Lanka. There should be 2028 gatekeepers as 03 for each gate but currently only 1,953 gatekeepers are in service for the safety of pedestrians, passengers, and vehicles. They are providing an honorary service receiving a monthly allowance of Rs. 7,500 as Rs. 250 per day without getting any salaries, wages and other privileges entitled to government servants. Considering the request of these gatekeepers that this allowance is inadequate, the Committee of Officials appointed in this regard has recommended to grant the monthly allocation of Rs. 22,500/- to 03 gatekeepers in a gate as an allowance allocated to a gate, and to prepare an internal arrangement to share this allowance among gatekeepers, and expeditiously install "Bell and Light" giving priority to accident-prone crossings as a long term measure. The proposal made by Hon. Nimal Siripala de Silva, Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation, to implement above recommendations, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    06.    Providing water supply facilities for resettlement villages in Kegalle District (Document No – 25)


    About 2000 families have been temporarily settled in 65 places due to destruction of houses or evacuation due to landslides and landslide warnings in Kegalle District. They have been planned to resettle in 11 Divisional Secretary Divisions in Kegalle District. Water supply should be provided expeditiously to 45 such places identified for resettlement. Accordingly, the proposal made by Hon. Rauff Hakeem, Minister of City Planning and Water Supply, to provide necessary water supply facilities at an estimated cost of Rs. 455 million, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    07.    Permanent transference of the freshwater hatchery in Panapitiya, Kaluthara to the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA) (Document No – 36)


    The ornamental fishery is an industry with high potentials that can considerably contribute in generating employment opportunities and NARA is conducting successful researched regarding ornamental fishery. The proposal made by Hon.  Mahinda Amaraweera, Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development, to permanently transfer the freshwater hatchery in Panapitiya, Kaluthara to the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA) which is currently owned by the National Aquaculture Development Authority (NAQDA) for facilitating its research requirements, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    08.    Purchase of soya beans for threeposha production    (Document No – 38)


    The annual soya beans requirement of the country is about 220,000 MT and the general production is merely 22,500 MT. The government is giving high priority to increase soya beans production. Accordingly about 4,000 hectares have been cultivated in Yala season 2016 in Anuradhapura District and Mahaweli zones and its expected harvest is about 8,000 MT. The proposal made by Hon. Duminda Dissanayake, Minister of Agriculture, to purchase about 5,000 MT of the harvest and provide for National Threeposha Production Programme with the view of protecting the domestic farmers and promoting supplementary food crops production, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    09.    Incorporation of Institute of Food Science and Technology of Sri Lanka     (Document No – 40)


    The above institution is implemented with the objectives of providing modern technological knowhow on food production and processing, developing the quality and protection of foods to an international standard on a scientific basis, and improving Sri Lankan food industry to an international level. The proposal made by Hon. Duminda Dissanayake, Minister of Agriculture, to incorporate the Institute of Food Science and Technology of Sri Lanka by a parliamentary act to strengthen its process, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    10.    Acquisition of a land to construct the proposed Economic Centre in Vavuniya     (Document No – 43)


    The budget 2016 has allocated Rs. 200 million on the above purpose. Accordingly, the proposal made by Hon. P. Harrison, Minister of Rural Economic Affairs, to transfer a land of 2.5 acres in Madauwayithakulam village in Munrumurippu Grama Niladhari Division which was selected with the agreement of Co-chairpersons of Vavuniya District Coordinating Committee to the Ministry of Rural Economic Affairs, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    11.    Improvement of the nutrition of children in early childhood development centres/ preschools (Document No – 49)


    The programme to provide a glass of fresh milk to children in Early Childhood Development Centres/Preschools was commenced in 2006 with the view of improving the nutrition of children in low income families and strengthening the domestic dairy farmer. Reviews of intellectuals on this programme have shown that providing a glass of milk is insufficient for improving their nutrition. Accordingly, the proposal made by Hon. Chandrani Bandara, Minister of Women and Child Affairs, to implement a programme from 2017 to provide a balanced breakfast in divisions of Medical Officer of Health where more percentage of underweight children between the age of 2-5 years are reported, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    12.    Prevention of difficulties faced by general public due to stray dogs    (Document No – 50)


    The Committee of Officials appointed in this regard has made its recommendations considering on controlling dog population, efficiently implementing vaccination programmes, establishment of dog detaining centres, development of coordination between local government agencies and other institutions. The proposal made by Hon. Faizer Mustafa, Minister of Provincial Councils and Local Government, to implement the action plan which these recommendations are included, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    13.    National Anti-corruption summit scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka    (Document No – 53)


    The Cabinet has already approved to hold the above summit with the objectives of educating politicians, high rank officers in public and private sector, other relevant parties and general public to establish a society free of corruption, and creating a discourse on eradicating bribes and corruption in the society. Accordingly, the proposal made by Hon. Sagala Ratnayake, Minister of Law and Order and Southern Development, to hold the National Anti-corruption Summit in line with the international anti-corruption day on 09 December 2016 in Colombo with the participation of about 700 local and foreign representatives, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    14.    Implementation of projects for providing benefits of digital technology to every citizen in the country    (Document No – 54)


    The Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA) has identified numerous projects to be implemented within three years 2016-2018 in this regard. Accordingly, the proposal made by Hon. Harin Fernando, Minister of Telecommunication and Digital Infrastructure, to implement 40 projects under the programmes of 'National Digitalization' and 'Upgrading Nenasala' using allocations of year 2016, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    15.    Improvement of main road from WELIOYA, Gajabapura to Nedunkerni in Mullaitivu District (Document No – 57)


    This is the main access road to Mullaitivu town for residents in Welioya area that runs 11.1 km. Improvement of this road will facilitate the lives of residents in Welioya area. Accordingly, the proposal made by H.E. the President Maithripala Sirisena, in his capacity as the Minister of Mahaweli Development and Environment, to improve the road at an estimated cost of Rs. 466.3 million, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    16.    Completion of constructions of the cancer treatment centre in Kandy Teaching Hospital (Document No – 61)


    Kandy Teaching Hospital, which is the second largest Tertiary Health Services Institution in Sri Lanka, treats about 4000 cancer patients annually. Construction of an 11 storied Cancer Treatment Centre has commenced in 2013 with the view of increasing the number of beds from 340 and to provide a better service to patients. The proposal made by Hon. (Dr.) Rajitha Senarathne, Minister of Health Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine, to award the contract for completion of its construction (phase III) to the Central Engineering Consultancy Bureau (CECB), was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    17.    Supply of medical equipments for epilepsy unit of the National Hospital of Sri Lanka     (Document No – 62)


    The proposal made by Hon. (Dr.) Rajitha Senarathne, Minister of Health Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine, to award the above contract as recommended by the Cabinet Appointed Standing Procurement Committee, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    18.    Contract for proposed anchorage facilities at Peraliya Landing site, Galle district (Document No – 63)


    The proposal made by Hon. Mahinda Amaraweera, Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development, to award the above contract as recommended by the Cabinet Appointed Standing Procurement Committee, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    19.    Restructuring of the Department of Labour and formulating a service minute for Labour Officers     (Document No – 72)


    The private sector provides a great contribution to the country's economic development and the Department of Labour plays a major role in maintaining the industrial peace that is required to obtain its efficient and qualitative services. A Committee of Officials has been appointed by the Minister of Labour and Trade Union Relations, and its proceedings are in the final stage. In addition a Committee of Officials comprised of officers from relevant ministries and departments has also been appointed to formulate a new service minute for Labour Officers for improving their service standards. Accordingly, the statement made by Hon. W.D.J. Seneviratne, Minister of Labour and Trade Union Relations, that reports of the two Committees will be presented to the Cabinet soon, was considered by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    20.    Review of the Government's paddy purchasing programme    (Document No – 73)


    The above programme has been implemented by this government for three subsequent years as in 2014/15 Maha season, 2015 Yala season and 2015/16 Maha season. Hon. Ravi Karunanayake, Minister of Finance, has proposed to dispose the bulk of paddy purchased in 2015 before the commencement of harvesting in 2016 Yala season according to the due procurement procedure, to dispose paddy purchased in 2016 in October and November which a high price is reported for paddy stocks, and using its income to settle the due balances to be paid to the General Treasury and to settle the dues payable to government banks. Implementation of above proposals as per the recommendations made by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Management was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.


    21.    Revision of taxes on cigarette and tobacco products (Document No – 74)


    Surveys have revealed that 15% of persons between 18-69 years are engaged in smoking and about 30,000 die annually due to tobacco related diseases. It has been calculated that government spends about Rs. 72 billion annually to treat such patients. The World Health Organization has identified that taxation is a good measure to control the use of tobacco and cigarettes. According to the recommendations made by the Cabinet Committee appointed to consider the joint proposal made by H.E. the President Maithripala Sirisena and Hon. (Dr.) Rajitha Senarathne, Minister of Health Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine, to revise taxes on tobacco and cigarettes, the Cabinet has decided to impose 15% VAT on cigarettes again, increase the current production tax from Rs. 5/- for any size cigarette, and to increase the cess on import of beedi leaves from Rs. 2,000/- to Rs. 3,000/- and to take other actions to minimize the tobacco use in the country.


    22.    Redevelopment of the Bogambara Prison Precinct (Document No – 76)


    Since the Bogambara Prison in the Kandy City was shifted to Pallekelle the site it was located of about 5 hectares is currently vacant. The proposal made by Hon. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, to assign the task of redevelopment of the said site as a centre for tourism attraction to an experienced and reputed international agency, protecting its historical value, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.

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