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Committee recommendations come into effect today

Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva at yesterday’s press conference. Picture by Rukmal Gamage

The recommendations of the Nine Member Committee appointed to resolve the issue surrounding the South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) in Malabe, will come into effect from today (January 22), National Policy and Economic Affairs Deputy Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva said.

This includes the maintaining of minimum standards for medical education, and the setting up of two institutes one of which will aborts all SAITM students and the other which will consider new enrolments for a fully fledged MBBS degree, Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva who chaired the nine member committee said at a press conference held at the World Trade Centre yesterday.

They had now succeeded in funding a solutions to the issue with the blessings of the President and the Prime Minister, the conference and approval of all parties concerned. The committee recommendations are legally binding and the gazette notification regarding its implementation will be published today (January 22).

Dr. Harsha de Silva said accordingly SAITM would be abolished forthwith. All students enrolled in SAITM for Medical degree programme of one to five years would he enrolled to the new not for profit “sunrise” institute which will cease to exist once the current batch of students graduated.

Apart from this, a new institute afflicted to Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT) will be set up encompassing all assets, liabilities, staff and other resource which belonged to former SAITM. Both these institutes will be affiliated to SLIIT.

He said SAITM encountered opposition on two accounts. One was that it did not conform to minimum standards of medical education and the other was that its sole objective was the profit motive.

As such the President appointed a Committee of nine members headed by him (Dr.de Silva) to the issue. The nine members represented all parties to the issue. The committee report submitted to the Attorney General had received legal approval and it would come into effect with the gazette notification issued today.