Our taxes are wasted on local govt. officials who do little to provide  a service I fully endorse the letter by Dr. S.W. Gunasekera published in the “Sunday Times” of July 1 under the headline- “Municipal Councillors, get your act together and stop blaming citizens”. The Health Ministry every time ‘Dengue” raises its head, boasts [...]


Letters to the Editor


Our taxes are wasted on local govt. officials who do little to provide  a service

I fully endorse the letter by Dr. S.W. Gunasekera published in the “Sunday Times” of July 1 under the headline- “Municipal Councillors, get your act together and stop blaming citizens”.

The Health Ministry every time ‘Dengue” raises its head, boasts of measures being adopted and the introduction of counter species to eradicate/eliminate the deadly mosquito but nothing happens and many lives particularly of children are lost due their inefficiency. As Dr. G pointed out, the citizens are then blamed for for not keeping their household premises clean.  The so called “Dengue Inspectors” with so many different men and women visiting homes often has now become a business as they only visit large houses for obvious reasons. The social media also recently showed and warned householders of ‘fake dengue inspectors’ visiting homes to rob.

The biggest contributors to the breeding of this deadly mosquito are the water clogged street drains and   roadside dirt/garbage which are not cleared for months by the local authorities, which is their duty and responsibility. The increasing annual taxes the public are called upon to pay are to provide these services on a regular basis. The public health officers should be instructed to inspect the street drains and report their condition as well and not check the premises of houses that interest them only.

I would not be wrong in stating that the service provided by all Municipal/Urban Councils/Local authorities is deplorable. Any public survey would prove my point.  The elected councillors, many of whom are not competent to hold office are only interested in their own welfare. To add insult to injury, the number of members elected was doubled from this year, further wasting public funds which could have been far better used to overcome the many other shortcomings the people are facing today.

It is proposed that the Government holds the Mayor/ Chairman of these Municipal/Urban Councils accountable for the huge public funds allocated by requiring the publication of an annual report with financial accounts to be audited by the Auditor General and also establishing a Committee like COPE to monitor and report their progress to Parliament.

J.Kudahetty  Nugegoda

You taught us how to care for our brethren

Four Thai Navy Seals give the thumbs up sign after leaving the cave safe following the rescue mission. (This photo was obtained from social media. Thai Navy Seal/via REUTERS)

To the heroic divers of Tham Luang

I can’t imagine what compels a man

To propel into darkness without command

Putting one’s life in peril and at serious harm

Enter the great unknown, arm in arm

For some reason I can’t find a proper word

Brave, courageous, superhuman seem a bit bland

Into the deep labyrinth as you descended

We watched an act of valour, surely unprecedented

The world owes you gratitude not just the children

For you taught the world how to care for their brethren

Regardless of race, relationship or nationality

You showed we are all part of the same unique family

Gentlemen, we bow to you in honour and praise

Sadly with time such heroics go out of phase

But remember this, my dear friends

For seventeen days we prayed for your strength

To brave the elements and overcome the odds

For good fortune to be with you and favour of the gods

As is our most human of traits

Your feats as such we will quickly forget

But nature will reckon no matter how it tried

The human spirit for once could not be subdued

Jayanka De Silva   Moratuwa

 Media coverage of school functions should be about the children

My intention in writing this is not to blame anyone but to highlight the need for appropriate coverage. This is occasioned by reading the press coverage of school events. School events such as a school prize giving or Founder’s Day are held to felicitate children who are high achievers-  top scorers in internal as well as external examinations and other school competitions.

Yet in most of the media reports after such events,  we see priority given to the VIPs – a political leader, a Minister or even a relevant head of the department etc.The reports focus on what the chief guest says, what the Principal said about him /her and what he said on the occasion. Everyone forgets the event is for the children, the audience is predominantly children, the prize winners are children, the contributors are children, and even some of the speeches like the vote of thanks are made by a student.

But hardly any word is found in the media about them. Even if a picture of the prize distribution, where the prize winner is receiving the prize from the chief guest is published, only the chief guest and the principal are referred to. Neither the prize winner nor  the other teachers on the stage have a place

Please spare the children this heartbreaking blackout.The mention of a few names of prize winners will be a boost for them.

R.Suntharalingam   Urumpirai

Brain drain: A problem in all professions

I refer to Dr. Channa Ratnatunga’s letter in the Sunday Times of July 1, and agree with his concern about the brain drain of qualified doctors. The eminent surgeon and former Professor of Surgery has mentioned only about the brain drain of doctors. However, there is a similar problem with the qualified professional engineers too who are leaving the country seeking greener pastures. Most of them are also willing to come back to Sri Lanka now and offer their services to the Government to carry out the development projects now in progress. They too would experience the same problems mentioned by Dr. Ratnatunga.

Therefore, I feel that the Government should consider this brain drain problem of all professionals and not only that of doctors.

Eng. Cecil B. Abeykoon  Anniewatte, Kandy.



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