Govt won’t prune free education, health – Minister Basil Rajapaksa
The government will never cut or prune free education and free health services in the country. The people sh ould not entertain any doubts or fears about it. The government will never lay its hands on these two welfare services as long as President Mahinda Rajapaksa remains in power, emphasised Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa addressing a gathering after laying the foundation stone for the construction of the 350 metre high Lotus Tower at D R Wijewardene Mawatha, Colombo yesterday.
He said it is free education and free health services which enabled the country to make a phoenix like comeback in development and progress after undergoing an unfortunate situation for 30 years due to terrorism.
He said the President always steadfastly stood behind policies and visions enumerated by him and people should never fear that he or the government would ever waver or depart from them.
Minister Rajapaksa who recounted the massive development projects launched by the government over the years said transforming the country into a Wonder of Asia would be meaningless unless people were provided with a miraculous change in their living standards. The government led by President Mahinda Rajapaksa is always committed towards achieving these twin objectives, he said.
Senior Minister A H M Fowzie, Mass Media and Information Minister Keheliya Rambukwella, Technology and Research Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi, Finance and Planning Deputy Minister Geethanjana Gunawardene, Chinese Ambassador Yang Xiuping, Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga ,Mass Media and Information Ministry Secretary W B Ganegala, Telecommunication Regulatory Commission Director General Anusha Pelpita and other officials were also present.
Courtesy: Daily News / Pix by FT.lk
I am glad, Hon Basil Rajapaksa made it quite clear that FREE EDUCATION WILL NEVER BE PRIVATISED.
But, just as there are Independent Schools to provide private primary and secondary education for those who can afford it, as in the developed countries, it is quite right that we introduce Private/Independent Tertiary Education. This is, University Education for those who can afford it, in parallel with FREE UNIVERSITY EDUCATION FOR THE ORDINARY MASSES. This would open up more places in Govt Universities for FREE EDUCATION. Currently, parents who can afford it, send their children to Universities abroad. This is a drain on the country’s valuable foreign exchange. Hence, SBD’s plan for Private Universities, for those who can afford it, will save money for the country. It will also generate valuable foreign exchnage for the country, by reserving a few places for foreign students. Hence Private University Education, for those who can afford it, is a double-edged sword.
JVP/JAM is trying to deceive the people by saying that Private Education will mean end of free university education. This is absolutely untrue. FREE GOVT UNIVERSITIES WILL CONTINUE TO FLOURISH, with infact more places, for those who cannot afford private universities.
Nonetheless, the standard and quality of free university education in SL will not be any the less. It is the JVP/JAM who is trying to disrupt this free university education by creating their ‘inter-university unions’ for their petty political goals. These students have been made pawns. They are the ones who would lose or even be killed/injured, by JVP/JAM incitement through demonstrations against the govt.
Hence, Hon President should act fast to nip in the bud such political interference in university education by anarchist JVP/JAM, by banning such political activities by student unions and arresting the JVP/JAM perpetrators.
Student unions should be there to improve university education and university life and to debate matters and needs of university students. They should never become pawns of disruptive anrachist JVP/JAM.
ALL ‘RAGGING’ SHOULD ALSO BE BANNED, BY A SPECIFIC LAW. That is, ‘ragging’ should be made a crime on its own. In developed countries there is no ‘ragging’. Infact, older students help freshers. JVP/JAM has made ‘ragging’ a tool to subjugate freshers to their party evil will and for political ends.
After the commendable conclusion of the destructive civil war by all parties and individuals that took part in the final stages, there is much money that is saved each year. As the years roll on, the country must experience increases in production, more investment in commodity and crop development, more employment opportunities in the development programs, more personal income for families, cheaper consumer goods, more fresh and affordable vegetables and fruit, cereals, and animal proteins, better rural schools with modern facilities, district hospitals with state of the art operating theatres with working x-ray and scanning machines and pharmacies with good quality medicines that have not passed use-by dates,smooth and neat country roads that do not have pot-holes, more public transport services like airconditioned CTB buses replacing the bone-jarring rattlers and lesser numbers of polluting three-wheelers (they have no catalytic converters like cars do), buses and trucks that do not screech like trumpeting wild elephants each time the drivers apply brakes,honest public servants starting from simply clad MPs who live in their areas and work with their constituents daily and a handful of ministers in Colombo who oversee the economic areas of nine provinces of this tiny country with just twenty million souls, no larger-than-life personalities who are praised and glorified as a ritual, simply laid out public parks in country towns for children to play and television programs that are not servicing industrialists and marketers at the cost of the viewers’ right to enjoy quality entertainment, education and spiritual discourse.(ie two minutes of ads every ten minutes, no more!)Now, have I covered almost everything that public funds could be utilised for, in bringing forth the miracle of Asia?