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 Post subject: Sri Lanka: NGOs hire local MPs
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 25, 2005 1:50 am 
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Date : 2005-04-08

Sri Lanka: NGOs hire local MPs

@ Asian Tribune
- Sunil C. Perera - Reporting from Sri Lanka

Colombo, 08 April, (Asiantribune.com); The Internationally and locally funded NGOs are now changing their strategies to win the hearts of the members of the Sri Lankan Parliament.

At present a heavy demand has been made to investigate the funds of the NGOs and other aid received by the NGOs due to the recent tsunami devastation.

According to the local news sources, the Parliamentary Select Committee on Disaster Management has obtained funds from an International NGO to maintain the expenditure on an overseas study tour.

The International Organization for Migration [IOM] has agreed to finance the study tour, which will commence this month, informed sources disclosed.

Meanwhile the agreement on IMO funds comes amidst the call to establish a Parliamentary Select Committee to investigate NGOs operating in Sri Lanka. The local Marxist party JVP and some members of the alliance have agreed to work on the investigation. According to a motion on the proposed select committee, activities of some of the international NGOs were detrimental to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country.

Some Parliamentarians who had endorsed the anti-NGO motion are in the Disaster Management Committee undertaking the overseas tour that would take them to Japan, Korea, Italy, Germany and Australia. The JVP, despite being fiercely critical of International NGOs, is likely to join the foreign tour. The Political Bikhkhus also represented in this committee, the sources said.

Earlier the head of the government has also alleged that the NGOs were getting big lump sum from the foreign donors. Nevertheless, the funds would not reach the tsunami victims, the government sources said. The President’s office has also directed the External Resources Department to monitor NGO activities.

However the NGOs also decided to hire foreign resource persons and experts paying high salaries to assist the tsunami related rehabilitation works. This is a game of the NGOs, said an official of the government of Sri Lanka.

At present an international NGO pays their staff over 2000 US$ ten per day when they attend in tsunami rehabilitation process.

It is a higher margin for the staffs of the NGOs who are also getting salaries and other perks.

However the JVP said on Wednesday in Colombo that they should spit on NGOs and stop them from walking on streets.

Donor countries and their NGO agents are holding this country to ransom, telling the government to set up a joint Tsunami relief mechanism with the LTTE.

It is something that can be done through the Sri Lankan state machinery. There is no need for a joint mechanism", said Mr. Wimal Weerawansa, propaganda secretary of JVP, speaking to a packed audience in Maharagama, to ‘expose the NGO Mafia that is against the land and the country’.

Meanwhile, Ven. Elle Gunawansa Thero, a co-President of the PNM in his address declared: "Even if they chop us into pieces, we will never accept federalism as a solution to the conflict. The Norwegians are attempting to create a Christian state.”

- Asian Tribune -

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