Sports should be devoid of politics
Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody presided when Parliament met at
1.30 pm yesterday. After the presentation of papers and oral questions,
the House took up Private Members' motions for debate.
Ravi Karunanayake (UNP): I
present the Private Members' motion on the implementation of Private
Members' motions. I suggest that Private Members' motions moved in
Parliament be debated within one year and, if approved by Parliament,
the cabinet of ministers sanction them within six months, so that the
Private Members' motions would be an effective contribution by
In this 7th parliament, I have presented 78 Private Members' motions
and 8 of them have been debated, and 4 agreed by both sides. But, they
have not been implemented up to now. The government has no interest in
proceeding with these proposals. Therefore, I suggest they be
implemented for the welfare of the country without delay.
Deputy Chairman of Committees Chandrakumar Murugesu takes the Chair
John Amaratunga (UNP): I
second the motion.
This is a timely motion. It refers to the rights of Ministers and
MPs. A Deputy Minister was deported from India when he was on a tour.
But he possesses a SAARC visa. Therefore we have to question and condemn
this act. It is an insult to Sri Lanka, and a breach of his privileges.
Dayasiri Jayasekara (UNP):
This Private Members' motion shows the inefficiency of the government.
It does not pay attention to implement good proposals, but carries out
useless proposals spending a lot of money.
The recent incident in India should be looked into and measures taken
to avoid repeating such incidents. It can become an issue between the
M.A. Sumanthiran (TNA):
This is a timely motion. It reminds us that the Private Members' motions
debated and approved by Parliament should be considered seriously and
implemented. They should not be neglected as they come under the label
Private Members' motion. Action should be taken to solve matters raised
in these motions.
Environment Minister Anura
Priyadarshana Yapa: There is a set procedure for Private
Members' motions and we follow this method. The government always works
for the welfare of the people and the country. Proposals contributing to
the welfare of the people are always considered. However, MPs should not
resort to speak in this House to get publicity through the media.
Matters already referred to courts should not be debated here.
Ravi Karunanayake (UNP):
As long as the independent media remains in the country democracy is
We know, our closest neighbour is India. But the country's foreign
policy is not commendable so that India does not support us.
Deputy Chairman of Committees
Murugesu Chandrakumara: Now Private Members' bill by member
Thilanga Sumathipala will be taken up.
Thilanga Sumathipala (UPFA):
We have to create a healthy society through sports.
This parliament resolves that a fair system devoid of racism and clam
divisions be drawn up at government level to create a healthy society,
encouraging children to take up sports in their childhood, guide them
with their innate talents to reach international level and bring glory
to the country by becoming world renowned players.
There should be a national policy for this. After 1963 such a plan
has not been enacted. Although the Education Ministry has allowed 39
games to be held in schools, only a selected few are played at school
level. Though more than 2000 schools play netball only 625 schools play
cricket. Out of the 403 schools in Colombo only 8 have swimming pools.
There is an attraction for water sports in Sri Lanka, so the
Education and Sports Ministries should jointly formulate a mechanism to
identify talented students and elevate them to international level
A.M.M. Azwer (UPFA): If
children are brought up with discipline the country will be safe and the
Schools and children should be devoid of caste, creed and racism.
The football federation should be given consideration at school
Arjuna Ranathunga also brought much fame to Sri Lanka by winning the
Cricket World Cup. Thilanga Sumathipala suggested that all facilities be
given to children in remote areas.
Arjuna Ranathunga (DNA):
Sports should be exposed to children at a very young age. I emphasise
there should be no religious or racial discrimination in selecting
players. We have spent Rs. 8000 million to build stadiums. We have to
decide whether they are useful. Much corruption has taken place.
This time only 4 will participate at the Olympic Games. This is the
first time in recent history that such a low number of athletes
participate in the Olympic Games.
A.H.M. Azwer takes the Chair
Ajith P. Perera (UNP):
This motion is commendable as it speaks about sports in general,
transcending cricket. There should be a mechanism to develop sports to
build up physical and mental health. Sports should be brought to
professional level to bring economic benefits to the country. A national
policy on sports has been formulated but it has to be debated.
Vjithamuni de Soyza (Education Deputy Minister): Nowadays sports
involves a massive economic network. Sports days are held in schools to
select students good at sports. If a student misses a sports meet at a
particular level he would not have the chance to play at the same age
level again. We have taken measures to train teachers who wish to work
as physical training instructors to address the shortage of PT teachers.
Shortages are found in sports equipment. We have taken measures to
correct the flaws and develop sports in the country.
After the eradication of terrorism there are plans to involve
children in the North and East in sports.
Thilanga Sumathipala (UPFA):
I am grateful to the members who contributed to the debate of this
I hope this proposal will contribute to the development of the sports
sector. I agree the sports sector should be devoid of politics.
UNP MP Buddhika Pathirana moved his Private Member's Motion in the
Buddhika Pathirana (UNP):
I present my Private Members' motion on granting Justice of Peace
appointments to indigenous ayurvedic doctors. All indigenous ayurvedic
doctors registered with the Ayurvedic Medical Council should be made JPs
as a token of respect to their service.
They render a great service, especially to the rural folk,
considering it as meeting their social obligation, without expecting
anything in return.
A mechanism must be developed to identify fake doctors posing as
Ajith P Perera (UNP): I
second this motion, which consists valuable suggestions. MP Buddhika
Pathirana has looked into sensitive problems in society.
This is a timely motion which proposes to recognise the services of
indigenous ayurvedic doctors. However, the position of JPs in Sri Lanka
should be uplifted, as offering JP positions has become politicised.
Indigenous Medicine Minister Salinda
Dissanayake: This is a valuable proposal. There are 5 medical
practices coming under the Indigenous Medicine Ministry including our
indigenous medical practice, Unani and Homoeopathy.
Some doctors are not registered with the Ayurvedic Medical Council.
There are facilities to obtain a degree. We hope to commence an
Indigenous Medicine University in Mihintale shortly. There are
indigenous doctors with inborn talents and the capability to cure
illnesses that cannot be cured by western medical practices. Their
services should be recognised and appreciated.
Most of these doctors do not even accept money for their services.
However, when conferring JP positions to indigenous ayurvedic doctors it
must be performed under proper guidance, preserving the recognition of
their post. There were occasions, when it was conferred to inappropriate
people. It should not happen. The Justice Minister has informed me that
an appropriate mechanism to confer JP posts to indigenous ayurvedic
doctors will be discussed as suggested in this motion.
He said over 21,000 doctors are registered in the Ayurvedic Medical
Council. We will look into this proposal and make necessary arrangements
Buddhika Pathirana (UNP):
I am happy that green light is shown to this motion in the House today.
We should proceed to prepare the necessary legal framework for it. I am
looking forward to the successful implementation of the proposal.
It will be an incentive for the indigenous doctors to be registered
with the Ayurvedic Medical Council.
Livestock and Rural Community Development Deputy Minister H R
Mithrapala said plans are afoot to develop milk production in the
country and stop milk powder import when the country is self sufficient
in local milk production.
He was replying to an adjournment motion moved by UNP MP Gayantha
Gayantha Karunathilake (UNP)
: The government ceremoniously launched a programme to offer a glass
of milk to schoolchildren in the Nuwara Eliya district. However, it
continued only for two days. Teachers in these schools said
schoolchildren were keen to attend school during the days the programme
Most of the students in these schools face hardships due to financial
difficulties. Therefore, this facility is valuable to them. I request
the government to resume it. This would not be limited to the Nuwara
Ajith P Perera takes the Chair.
R Yogarajan (UNP): I
second the motion. The government launches programmes but abandons them
half way during implementation.
This is a fine example to prove this complaint. The government should
not have given hopes to schoolchildren in Nuwara Eliya, if it is unable
to put the plan into action.
A H M Azwer (UPFA): The
consumption of cow's milk is not expanded in Sri Lanka compared to other
countries. For example, in India, cow's milk is very popular. That
lifestyle is not seen in Sri Lanka.
Livestock and Rural Community Development Deputy Minister H R
Mithrapala: It is questionable whether the milk powder imported is
healthy or nutritious. It is a pity the Opposition speaks for foreign
companies that send us milk powder.
The government is taking measures to provide liquid milk produced in
the country. During the UNP regime local milk production dropped to 15
When the government took measures to import 2,000 heifers to increase
milk production, the companies stopped buying the milk from the farmers.
They created an unnecessary issue by throwing away the milk in Nuwara
Under this government milk production has increased by 40 percent.
Milk powder import will be completely stopped in the future as a large
amount of money is flowing out of the country to import milk powder.
Nuwara Eliya students will get a glass of milk and the government
will take measures to grant a glass of milk to all students in the
The House was adjourned until 1 pm June 19.
Parliament extends leave for Duminda
The proposal to grant another three months' leave to UPFA Colombo
District MP R Duminda Silva was approved by Parliament yesterday.
Chief Government Whip and Water Supply and Drainage Minister Dinesh
Gunawardane presented the leave proposal of MP Silva, asking to grant
him permission to be absent from sittings of Parliament for three months
beginning June 24.
Parliament already approved two leave proposals, three months each
for MP Silva,, after he was injured in October 2011.
Gold reserve intensifies in value - Minister Amunugama
International Monetary Cooperation Minister Dr Sarath Amunugama
yesterday said the price of gold reserves bought at the time when the
IMF gave the opportunity for member countries to buy gold, have
The minister said the country has US $ 523 million worth gold
reserves weighing 9.93 metric tons as at end 2011. He said the country
sold 39.61 metric tons of gold reserve, earning US $ 1,996.6 million and
it is maintained as foreign currencies in the country's international
The Central Bank as part of its deposit management operations,
purchases and sells gold reserves, he said. Purchasing and selling is
carried out after considering gold price fluctuations in the
The price of gold increased in 2011 and a decision was taken to sell
part of the gold reserves, the minister said.
Glass of milk for schoolchildren
Steps will be taken to provide a glass of milk for all schoolchildren
in the Nuwara Eliya district within the next two days, Livestock and
Rural Community Development Deputy Minister H. R. Mithrapala said in
He made this comment responding to a question raised by UNP MP Sajith
Premadasa. He said the government has implemented a five year master
plan to develop the livestock industry according to the Mahinda
Local production of liquid milk has exceeded 40 percent he said.
The government expects to become self sufficient in liquid milk by
2015, the deputy minister said.
He said a number of initiatives such as uplifting 120,000 small scale
dairy farmers and 11,000 medium scale farmers have been undertaken by
the government for the development of the livestock industry.