Jul 17, 2020 (LBO) – President Gotabaya Rajapaksa invited the local engineers to take part in a revolutionary transformation in the construction sector which will fulfill the needs of the urban and rural populations.
“People in many parts of the country suffer due to lack of water for drinking and irrigation purposes. Tanks and irrigation systems have nearly collapsed. The development of the road network in rural areas should be expedited. Development projects serve no purpose if they fail to meet the basic needs of the people. My assumption to the office as the President will also become futile if I am unable to deliver the primary needs of the people of this country”, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa said.
President made these remarks during a meeting with the members of the Institution of Engineers, Sri Lanka held at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday (16).
For many years, preparation of feasibility reports of development projects, construction supervision, and decision making has been done by foreign engineers. Projects led by them have failed to meet the needs of the people.
President said the culture of assigning development projects to foreign companies will be reverted and future development programmes will be entrusted upon the local engineers.
The Government placed faith in the youth in the battle against terrorism. In the same manner, President said that he will place his trust on the local engineers in the expected revolution in the construction sector adding that the past era of renowned engineers from Sri Lanka should usher in again.
The engineers assured that they would shoulder the task of putting in place a local mechanism in the country, reciprocating the confidence placed on them by the President.
The President said that he was deeply saddened regarding the current status of the State Engineering Corporation and the Government Workshop and added that the responsibility of rebuilding these institutions better than before lies with the engineers.
The President noted that the challenges faced by the country at present due to the COVID-19 crisis are ten times greater than the challenges encountered when he took over the administration and stressed that he would face the situation with more vigour.
The President also highlighted the importance of the contribution of local construction companies and engineers in resolving the housing problem of low and middle-income earners.
The importance of renovating the tanks and irrigation system without damaging the original structure was also discussed.
“Developing the economy means raising the living standards of the people”. President Rajapaksa said that a development plan should be drafted with the aim of achieving this target.
Secretary to the President P.B. Jayasundera, Secretaries to Ministries and Heads of State and Private Institutions were also present at the discussion.