Paradise regained for some Divi Neguma officers deprived of EPF/ETF | Daily News

Paradise regained for some Divi Neguma officers deprived of EPF/ETF

The EPF/ETF issue concerning certain officers who were absorbed to the Department of Divi neguma Development in 2013, is now resolved, said Minister of Social Empowerment and Welfare, S. B. Dissanayake, briefing the media at the Finance Ministry premises yesterday.

The Samurdhi programme was replaced by the Department of Divi Neguma Development under former Minister Basil Rajapaksa in 2013, where the Sri Lanka Samurdhi Authority, Sri Lanka Southern Development Authority, Department of Upcountry Peasantry Rehabilitation and Samurdhi Commissioner General’s Department were combined.

“Of the officers absorbed in to Divi Neguma, 8,149 officers were deprived of their 12% Government share of their EPF/ETF benefits. These officers were not recognized by the Public Service Commission, National Salaries and Cadres Commission and the Department of Pensions. A trade union for these officers had filed a case seeking justice and on August 10, 2016, a settlement was made after we as the defense agreed that these officers deserved the 12% Government share of the EPF/ETF. A committee under the instructions of President Maithripala Sirisena, had taken a decision to entitle these officers the EPF/ETF benefits they were deprived of by the last regime,” Minister S.B. Dissanayake said.

“We are to forward the letters of entitlement to these officers in the near future. Approval was already given to backdate these officers’ letters of appointment. These officers were deprived of their promotions and a number of other allowances. This decision shall solve all these problems faced by these officers,” Minister Dissanayake pointed out.

“The Director General of Samurdhi Authority was already assigned to forward a letter of request to the Labour Department regarding this decision.There were many political opportunists who tried to use this problem for their own political gains. With this decision, all their attempts have failed,” said State Minister of Finance Lakshman Yaba Abeywardana.

“The Samurdhi Authority has now been able act independently, thanks to this present government. The capricious decision making of the previous Divi Neguma Department Minister, threw these officers into a very difficult situation,” President of the Divi Neguma Trade Union Collective, Chamath Kudawa Hewa said.


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