Ministry seeks to retake Estate Housing funds
[TamilNet, Monday, 25 October 2004, 10:43 GMT]
Vice President of the Ceylon Workers United Front, Kanapathy Kanakaraj, condemned the decision of the Estate Infrastructure Ministry of Sri Lanka's United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) to retake a sum of Rs. 150 millions that had been placed in deposit by the Sri Lanka Government to put up houses for the benefit of people living in huts in the plantation sector, in a media released issued Sunday, sources in Kandy said.
In 2000, Rs. 30,000 per family for 5,000 families living in temporary huts was deposited in the People’s Bank by the Peoples Alliance (PA) Government. However, after the change in Government in 2002, it was not possible for the workers to obtain this money from the Bank.
Nevertheless, at the request of the Ceylon Workers United National Front the former Minister of Estate Infrastructure, C. B. Ratnayake, endeavoured to get this money back to the workers.
As the Ministry has again changed hands, the new Minister, Mutthu Sivalingam, has sought Cabinet approval to secure this fund to the Ministry.
The statement in question further points out that after Ceylon Workers Congress (CWC) joined the UPFA Government, it has become impossible not only to obtain the housing fund referred to but also for over 3,000 youth from the plantation sector to secure employment.