Peace Building

08 Jul, 2008 09:00:02

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Sri Lanka should build English medium schools in East: official
July 07, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s government should start English medium schools in the East of the island, because educators in the areas are clamouring them, a top official in charge of peace building efforts said.
The Secretariat for Coordinating the Peace Process (SCOPP) is encouraging communities in the Eastern Province to formulate their own development initiatives for the area which will also contribute to peace building.A key initiative was the request for an English medium schools in the Trincomalee district, Rajiva Wijesinha secretary general of SCOPP told reporters in Colombo.

“Principals from Moslem, Tamil and Sinhalese schools in the region have requested for an overarching English medium school to supplement a teacher shortage.”

“This will also help children of different ethnicities to blend with each other, hopefully when the children unite, the adults will also do so,” Wijesinha said.

The secretariat has opted to allow the communities to plan their own development schemes for the region. It will also help communities unite in the peace building process, SCOPP says.

“These are the areas we have to move in and act quickly because the people themselves have asked for it,” Wijesinha said.

Sri Lanka Army freed from the Eastern region of the island from Tamil Tigers over the past year. Provincial polls were also conducted in the Eastern Province in May, where TVMP the break-away faction of Tigers won the chief ministerial portfolio.

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Since then, development work has been initiated in the region.The government also opened the new Arugam Bay Bridge connecting Pottuvil, Arugam Bay and Panama in the Eastern province, which was swept away in the 20047 tsunami, to the public this month.

SCOPP has also appointed civil coordinators for the region to stir constant discussion and exchange of information.

It is important to bring community action together against ‘spoiling’ activities such as abductions and torture, says Wijesinha.

However, the region has a dearth of job opportunities and skilled labour due to lower levels of education, he also said.


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