( President meeting IDPs in Jaffna)
President Maithripala Sirisena Sunday (20) assured the displaced people in the North languishing in the welfare camps that they would be resettled soon in their original homes.
Addressing the state Christmas Celebrations in Jaffna, President Sirisena said a Presidential Task Force will be appointed immediately within the next 6 months to solve the issues of IDPs displaced for over 25 years. He said the entire state service and the security forces will be utilized for the urgent task.
The President said earlier in the day he made a surprise visit to an IDP camp and met with the people there and he listened to the hardships they are enduring in the camps. They all had one common request from him – to settle them in their homes they lived 25 years ago-, the President said.
Speaking further the President said the most of the common people along with the intellectuals have comprehended the government’s continuing program to establish peace and reconciliation among communities but few extremists have failed to understand the government’s initiatives.
He said this government has provided media freedom to speak and criticize the government and any one can criticize the government from an office room in Colombo but that doesn’t mean they understand the problems of the people.
“The freedom to express and criticize always should be used to protect the peace and reconciliation in the country,” the President said.
The President pointed out that the war ended and peace returned but the problem that caused the war was not resolved.
He invited the extremists, who say that government has allowed the LTTE to revive and national security is in danger, to come to the North and meet the people in the North displaced for over 25 years. He even offered fuel and vehicles or any other form of transportation, even a ship or a plane if they have no means to come.
“National security problem is not within the government. It is with the people displaced in North for over 25 years,” he said.
He assured that his government would never allow for another conflict to rise and said the national security is strengthened even more during this administration.
He said the people from North, South, East and West voted for this government and they have common expectations from the government.
He invited all the critics to join the government to fulfill the common expectations of the people. He asked them to unite with the government assert people’s independence and ensure freedom, establish peace and reconciliation, eliminate poverty, develop the country and ensure non-occurrence of another conflict.