Carrying forward the procedures executed by the Former Minister Late Lalith Athulathmudali to develop the Sri Lanka Ports Authority is a responsibility of all of us, Minister Arjuna Ranatunga told. Minister Ranatunga expressed these concerns while addressing the commemoration ceremony of Late Lalith Athulathmudali today on 24th of April, held in the Administration building premises of Jaya Container terminals of Sri Lanka Ports Authority. This commemoration ceremony was organized by the Democratic National Worker’s Union. During a time period, party based politics was prominent the way Former Minister Lalith Athulathmudali render his service by giving the priority to the country is an ideal to all of us. Chairman of the Sri Lanka Ports Authority Mr. Dammika Ranatunga, Managing Director of SLPA Mr. Sarath Kumara Premachandra and a group of employees and officials of the Sri Lanka Ports Authority attended this ceremony. A floral tribute was paid to the Lalith Athulathmudali monument at this occasion.
“Former Minister Late Lalith Athulathmudali gave strength to educated children from poor families by providing Mahapola Scholarships. All of you know about the service rendered by the former minister Lalith Athulathmudali to the port. Sometimes, I would not be able to carry out the same procedures carried out by the Former Minister Lalith Athulathmudali. But, continuing the development programmes carried out by the Former Minister Lalith Athulathmudali is our responsibility. But now we are facing to various challenges that weren’t faced by former minister Lalith Athulathmudali. When we move forward with a national government various leaders have various beliefs. But HE owns the policy; profit owning institutions should not be privatized. I have the same policy. If there are unprofitable firms, developing these firms to profitable ones by bringing the investors according to the built operate transfer method is a good thing.
Development of the Eastern terminal will be another controversy like Hambantota Port. I couldn’t protect these institutions alone, as the minister. All of you should come forward to attain that goal. Normally, I’m against the policy of privatization. I’m very proud to say Sri Lanka Ports Authority and other institutions under ministry of ports earned profits in large quantities, in the previous year. Employees have done their job well. Through that we could convince the cabinet these institutions do not need privatization. Employees could protect the state owned institutions without let them to be privatized.
Now 24 years has passed after the death of Former Minister Lalith Athulathmudali. But we are still speaking about the Minister Lalith Athulathmudali. People who know the history, respects Former Minister Lalith Athulathmudali. I don’t see him as a politician. Former Minister Lalith Athulathmudali didn’t use political power in wrong manner as a member of UNP. I could remember when he was serving as the minister of defense his main objective was to protect this country from terrorists. That’s why he was assasinated........” Minister Arjuna Ranatunga added.
(Maritime in SriLanka - 26042017)