An analysis of the productive Governors Conference
A comprehensive, productive and a useful report of the recently held Governors Conference in Jaffna city will be handed over soon to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, after his return from Kazakastan and the 9 – Governors seek guidance and direction from the President regarding those decisions and resolutions they have arrived at the conference.
The Governors Conference in Jaffna for the first time in the history was held from 14th to 16th November and in fact it was a two-day conference which began on 15t of November.
Governor G.A. Chandrasri of the Northern Province pointed out that one of the newspapers (not Asian Tribune online daily) from Jaffna, has published a news item saying the High Commissioner of India came and address the Governors' conference.
He refuted it in a very strong term and said that there was nothing like that and no single foreigner was invited and no foreigners came to participate in the conference.
Asian Tribune pointed out that a Tamil daily published from Jaffna has alleged that the Governor’s Secretariat has spent a massive sum of money, more than Rs.100 million for this conference.
Governor was very critical in his response and said the newspaper can say anything it wants, but remember these are all government funds and every cent spent needs approval, and they are accounted and audited.
There are government accountants and there are also government auditors and anyone wanted, can contact them and go through the expense account of the conference. He said it is very transparent.
He said that the Tamil news daily from Jaffna which came out with such an accusation is an anti-government daily and a third grade news sheet.
G.A. Chandrasri when speaking to Asian Tribune said the Governors Conference of this magnitude and this was the first time in history of the Northern Province that all the nine Governors (including him) came to participate in the Conference.
The provincial Governors who participated in the conference were:
Northern Province – G.A. Chandrasri
Western Province Alavi Moulana
Eastern Province – Mohan Wijewickrama
Central Province – Tikiri Kobbekaduwa
North Central Province Karunarathne Diulgane
North Western Province – Tissa Balalla
Subragamuwa Province – Wijesinghe Lokkubandara
Southern Province – Kumari Balasuriya
Uva Province – Nanda Mathew
It was Northern Province Governor Chandrasri who hosted the Governors Conference in Jaffna and all the other eight Governors came and participated in the 15th annual conference of the Provincial Governors.
All arrived for the conference to Jaffna on the 14th and the Jaffna city was bustling with festive mood and on the 15th the conference started on a high note.
The Conference was held in the heart of Jaffna city, at the Hotel Tilco. Governor said that all the government departments and all and everybody supported to make the conference a grand success. He thanked all the Government and Provincial Council officials who made the conference a grand success.
Governor Chandrasri said that they took it as a pride for them also to have a conference of that nature. All the Government officials were invited for the opening ceremony.
The Governor emphasized that only the Sri Lanka Government officials as well as Provincial Government officials were invited. No foreigners, no foreign delegations and no foreign persons were invited to participate in the conference.
He said that the Governors had in fact a 4-hour of discussions regarding all issues relevant to the Provincial Councils.
Basically the areas which the Governors covered were:
1. Education Sector
2. Agriculture sector
3. Additional cadre requirements for Provincial Councils
4. And also the issues relevant to various programs and projects done by the Government and how various Provincial Council secretariats could support and assist these programs.
All the basic information were provided by the respective Secretaries of the provinces and then there was a follow up discussion and then the decisions were made, Governor Chandrasri told Asian Tribune.
G.A. Chandrasri said that the conference was hosted in such a way in the Jaffna city, where everybody could be proud of.
When answering to a question whether the two Ministers of the Northern Province Minister Douglas Devananda and Minister Rishad Bathiyuthhen were invited, he said normally they won’t come to Governors conferences.
Governors are different unlike the Chief Ministers and we did not invite them for the conference but invited them for the cultural show.
I think during that particular period of time they were busy with the Second Reading of the Budget - 2013 and were engaged in parliament and they were unable to come and participate in the cultural events.
He said that they had a very good cultural show on the 15th evening, again at the Tilco Hotel and all the government officials and their families happily participated in the events.
- Asian Tribune -