Transparency International Sri Lanka joins millions of Sri Lankans to extend their deepest condolences to the families of the victims of the Tsunami disaster.
Without any preparation, Sri Lanka has been forced to face the devestating effects of the tidal waves which caused extensive loss and damage.
At this time of grief,Sri Lanka needs toshed political, racial,and religious differences in order to undertake the massive rebuilding and reconstruction effort that is needed.TISL believes that strong commitment to reconciliation indicated by all parties and individuals is needed,with a strong will to recover the nation at the earliest. We strongly urge the following:
A national strategy on relief distribution and reconstruction should be
planned and implemented with the participation of all sectors. The effort should be properly coordinated to achieve optimum benefit to the victims and affected areas. In addition, the Government should immediately ensure participation of all politicians, regardless of political affiliation.
Ethnic communities, religious groups,political parties and leaders of Sri Lanka need to unite with the utmost commitment to rebuild the country,while all organizations and individuals must contribute to make the reconstruction possible.
The LTTE and the Government should cooperate in all relief operations and reconstruction efforts in the North and East, without any short-term political agendas. The Government should ensure equal distribution of relief aid in all parts of the country.
The distribution of relief items received from the international community, religious groups, non-governmental organizations and private donors, should be facilitated without obstruction by the Government, LTTE and political parties. Normal restrictions imposed by the LTTE, including restrictions on free movement in the North and East,should be immediately lifted to permit this humanitarian effort.
The public should continue with their commitment and responsibility to support the reconstruction and distribution of relief aid, while cooperating with authorities to maintain law and order.
In view of past experiences,TISL strongly feels that corruption will raise its ugly head at all stages of relief operations, unless preventive measures are taken by the government.TISL urges the government and the public to be aware of the possible large scale corruption in reconstruction efforts,which will lead to an additional burden on Sri Lanka, unless prevented at initial stages with a clear political determination.