Identify grievances of Mahaweli settlers - State Minister Gamalath

Five decades have passed since the commencement of the Mahaweli Accelerated Development Project but we are compelled to admit in bitter unison that it has failed to achieve its projected goals so far, said State Minister of Mahaweli Zones Canals and Settlement Infrastructure Development Siripala Gamalath.

The State Minister points out although one third of the land area of the country is situated within the 10 zones of the Mahaweli Project, the country has failed to gain profit sufficiently out of such huge land sources.

State Minister Siripala Gamalath was addressing officers of the Mahaweli ‘E; Zone and the Rambakan Oya Zone in the Ampara during a special training program held recently.

The aim of the training session was to guide the officials of the two Mahaweli Zones to enable them to assist Mahaweli farmers to increase the productivity of the agricultural production activities in the area.

The State Minister further said: “People the world over, including us in Sri Lanka have been facing numerous challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are now compelled to lead our day to day lives with this deadly virus. The world may have to face a food shortage as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, we too should expect the impact of a situation that may result from any food crisis. The Government has taken the necessary measures to face the situation. One of the steps, among them is to make the 10 Mahaweli Zones into worksites. Not only that, we have been marching towards such goals’.

“Fifty years have passed since the Mahaweli Accelerated Development Project was commenced but it is not a secret that the lifestyle of the majority of Mahaweli settlers has not improved. Nevertheless, the consequences of its lethargy have impacted a slow progress towards the expected development goals of the country. President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has tasked me not only to improve the lives of the Mahaweli settlers but also to contribute the share of the Mahaweli project to national development,” he said.

“It is compulsory that we start journeying towards new goals with the advent of 2021. You all should start visiting door to door of the Mahaweli farmers with effect from tomorrow and draw your attention to their grievances. The majority farmers should be given a target,” he said


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