Written by Zulfick Farzan
13 Feb, 2020 | 4:02 pm
Colombo (News 1st): A video that went viral on Social Media has caught the attention of the Cabinet of Ministers and has brought much-wanted praise for honest government officers.
Earlier, this week a Forest Department Officer refused to bow down to pressure from State Minister Sanath Nishantha and Negombo Residents to release land for the construction of a playground.
The Forest Department Officer defended her position not to release land on the request of the locals and the State Minister citing the importance of having a balanced Eco-system, especially in a mangrove forest area.
PRESS CONFERENCE BY THE STATE MINISTER
Yesterday, State Minister Sanath Nishantha resp
He said though the area in which a playground is proposed to be built is owned by the Government, he requested for the Forest Department Officer to allow the 700 Million Rupee development project to go ahead without causing any further delay.
The State Minister was determined to state the project will go ahead no matter what adding the land in question was already being filled with soil.
MINISTER OVER RULES STATE MINISTER
S.M Chandrasena, the Minister of Wildlife speaking thereafter at a separate press conference stressed, land owned by the Forest Department cannot be released for any purpose unless approved by the Parliament of Sri Lanka.
He said the law will be enforced against anyone if the Fauna & Flora Protection Ordinance was violated and if lands are filled in an unnecessary manner.
He further defended the Forest Department Officer noting it was her duty to educate the state minister who was obviously unaware of the legislation.
He said if nominations are denied to such politicians, there would be no issue at all.
The Government announced today the President, Prime Minister and the entire Cabinet of Ministers stand-by with the Forest Department Officer who refused to bend the rules and allow the construction of a playground.
Joint Cabinet Spokesperson & Minister, Bandula Gunawardena speaking to reporters today, said the Government will protect any public officer who acts according to the provisions of the law.
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