AIRSA in fasting campaign
by Kalinga Weerakkody
The All Island Relief Sisters Association (AIRSA) has resorted to a fast unto death campaign from November 1, demanding for permanency of around 250 of its members.
The campaign had been launched in front of the Ministry of Womens Affairs at Narahenpita.
The AIRSA blamed the permanent secretary of the ministry who had prevented them from gaining permanency and was trying to do away with their services by providing compensation of only Rs.20,000.
AIRSA states that a decision had been taken by the ministry to terminate the services of 174 members commencing from August 31, 2003.
Following the Satyagraha campaign, held in August by the AIRSA the service of the said workers had been extended by another two months.
In the meantime a committee headed by the Minister of Public Administration Vajira Abeywardene had given an assurance to them that they would look into the matter in due course.
The AIRSA states that whatever said and done, the appeals made by them had fallen on the deaf ears of the authorities of the Ministry of Womens Affairs.
Around 250 women employees had been recruited on contract basis on August 18, 2000 for a period of three years under the PA regime by the former Minister Hema Ratnayake.
This is in addition to the all-island welfare services of women and children of the families of the three armed forces affected by the war.
Though cabinet approval was received to recruit 300 employees in 2001 on contract basis, initially 250 were recruited. Their service officially began on August 14.
It states that in 2001, under public administration circular No. 27/2001 all relief contract basis workers in all ministries, departments and boards were made permanent.
As this was effected under the PA regime, in the latter part of the same year, the permanent appointment of their jobs came to a standstill with the election of the UNP government.
Sources said minister Amara Piyasili Ratnayake withdrew the letter of recruiting terms and the regulation papers.
All the members of the AIRSA worked for a monthly salary of only Rs.2,500 since it was a welfare service on behalf of children and women.
|FEATURES | OPINION | BUSINESS | EDITORIAL | CARTOON | SPORTS|