President Maithripala Sirisena says that the Government has entered into a sustainable development approach which would eradicate the dependent mentality, enabling Sri Lankans to build a nation which can be independent.
President Sirisena made these remarks at a programme to launch new Samurdhi benefits for 150,000 families. This event was held at the auditorium of the Polonnaruwa Royal College last Friday. This was conducted under the Ministry of Social Empowerment and Welfare under the theme ‘Secure Sri Lanka – Strong Community’ towards empowering Sri Lanka as poverty free nation.
President Sirisena further stated that low income families should be supported by the State but called for beneficiaries to empower themselves to be independent of handouts. The President said that the government has taken steps to conduct programs including loan schemes and that when one becomes self-sufficient that paves way for the development of the entire country.
Expressing his views regarding the development program of the country, he said that funding was not a problem for development activities. He said that as a result of winning international cooperation by the Government during the past three-and-a-half years, at present the assistance of the international community was forthcoming for the development process of the country.
President Sirisena further said that during the meeting he held with the international donor agencies which provide assistance to Sri Lanka, they pledged to further increase loans in the future.
“If the people engaged in the political sector as well as in the public service fulfill their responsibilities and duties properly, there will be no difficulty in developing the country,” he added.
President Sirisena said that everyone should unite without political interference to develop the country while eradicating poverty. Under this program 3,800 low income families in the Polonnaruwa District received new Samurdhi benefits.
Minister P. Harrison, Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake, Ministry Secretary Shirani Weerakoon, Polonnaruwa District Secretary S.P. Abeyawardena, Additional Director General of the Samurdhi Development Department Nimal Kotawalagedara and others participated in this event.