Govt institutions should generate revenue - Minister

Transport, Highways and Mass Media Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardena, said yesterday (9) at the celebration held at the Postal Department on the occasion of the World Post Day that government institutions should act to increase the income of institutions by strategic planning apart from using traditional methods without becoming burden to the Government.

The Minister who said that the Postal and Motor Traffic Departments have already laid the foundation, also mentioned that all employees, trade unions and everyone else in those departments should co-operate to win those goals.

“The Department of Posts and the Department of Motor Traffic, which entered into new agreements, as government agencies, have already started to prepare a strategic plan after seeing and hearing something more realistic rather than thinking outside of the traditional ways to increase the government’s income.All employees and trade unions of the Department of Posts should assist in this. The income of this department has to be increased based on each person’s experience. What can we do to earn our salaries and we have to dedicate ourselves to it. It will lead to the benefit of your children and others who will work in this department after you in the future.

“It is necessary to earn at least adequate income so as to be able to maintain the department. But all those losses are borne by the people of the country, including the statutory boards of state corporations. No one else. Public finance is not the business of anyone else’s or the government or politicians.What the government does is distribute monies collected from the people for various purposes. There are a large number of assets that the Department of Posts received during the colonial era under the British. They are lands, buildings and other assets. A certain joint procedure should be implemented using these. Because there is no way of maintaining the department.

Today, it is risky to obtain bank loans and invest. Since it is a costly fact, we have to act to earn such income from other alternatives. When we do that, we will have to face activities of sabotage and other facts by many. There is no situation in the country where we can maintain institutions, without doing so. The economy of the country has become overheated, much more than what it should be. At the same time, for the first time in history, on three occasions in history, the economic growth has become negative in Sri Lanka.

This time, it has been estimated that the contribution to the national product from all sectors such as agriculture, industry and services will be around minus seven. We can believe that by the end of the year, the economy would have travelled to rock bottom. It is that pressure that all of us are feeling. Understand that situation with patience and tolerance. Everyone should get together, sans political parties and colour differences and work together to rebuild the country. I wish everyone strength and courage on World Postal Day to work together.

State Minister of Mass Media Shantha Bandara: We pay our respects to all those who worked for the development of the postal service with or without pay. During theCOVID pandemic period, our innocent villagers became helpless. They could not even go out to buy their medicine.If the Department of Posts had not been there at that time, it would not have been possible to send medications to people’s homes. Considering it as a national responsibility, the postal department carried out its respective tasks at great risk.

Everyone needs to get to know information. Although, at that time, people waited for letters to arrive at their homes, today with technology, methods to obtain information have been transformed drastically. There are honest and responsible people in the postal service. We need to move forward rather than saying we cannot do it and remaining aloof. There are about twenty-five thousand in the family of posts. The responsibility of the government and the President and Prime Minister is to formulate policies. Implementing these policies together with you all. If the mail is received, we as the political authority should also take responsibility for it.

“We should do the system change requested by those who fought in the Aragalaya fairly. The Department of Posts has a system. We need to make it relevant to today. The postal department should be taken forward with a business mindset, by increasing employee salaries and ensuring employee safety. It does not mean that the postal department will be privatized.But if the department continues to incur losses, it may join the list of privatized institutions. It is our responsibility to properly manage the resources of the department.

Postmaster General Ranjith Ariyaratne: It is essential to overcome obstacles as public officials. We are ready to fulfil that responsibility. We will act from today, from this moment onwards on behalf of that. We have already prepared plans and we are ready to submit them to the Cabinet. In the year 2023, the plan begins to usher in an era of transformation. Through that, we expect the post office to become not only a service providing institution but also a multi-service center. The Motor Traffic Department is joining hands with us today for that. In the future, we are preparing to bring the post office as a center for accepting applications for the immigration department and a place to obtain air tickets and take it forward.

Also, we are trying to reach such a situation where the national identity card can be issued.

Mass Media Ministry Secretary and Lake House Chairman Anusha Palpita and others attended this event.

by Daily News Sri Lanka

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