Security Forces – Jaffna (SF-J) Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe
on Tuesday (21) clarified the reality of the issue on taking over
lands in Valikamam North to top officials of United Nations Office
of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), Ms Agnes Asekenye
– Oonyu, Head of Office and Mr. Mark Prasopa – Plaizier, Deputy
Head of Office.
meeting, Maj. Gen. Hathurusinghe refused the allegation leveled
by some interested parties using biased media that Army is taking
over civilians’ lands, and showed that it is done by the government
for development activities in Jaffna such as expansion of the
Palaly airport and Kankesanthurai harbour. He further highlighted
the importance of maintaining an adequate number of troops in
Jaffna as a matter of national security and told that some lands
within the area earmarked to be taken over will be used for that
purpose. SF-J Commander enlightened the UN officials that there
is discrepancy on figures of people losing their lands, and actual
figure is lesser than what is highlighted by different sections
with political motives.
are made to resettle the displaced fisheries families to be resettled
in government lands on the coastal belt soon with directives of
the His Excellency the President and the Secretary Defence. And
they will be given compensations for their lands according to
the present value. However, most of the lands to be taken over
belong to government institutes”, he told the UN officials.
UN officials were educated on the present security situation in
Jaffna and they were also given a comprehensive idea on reduction
of troops in the peninisula, welfare works that Jaffna soldiers
carrying out at village level for civilians to improve their living
standard, livelihood development programmes starttted for reintegrated
ex-LTTE combatants, housing project and scholarship projects for
low income families initiated by this Headquarters and soldiers’
contribution to government development programme for Jaffna.
Head of OCHA
Office and her deputy, before their departure, commended the Army’s
role in post war Jaffna and congratulated the SF-J Commander for
his initiative and commitment shown to develop Jaffna and to improve
the life of Jaffna.