One of the main objectives of the Government’s highly ambitious Mega City Project is to minimize the huge gap in income, education, health, living standards and social status of Sri Lankans and to create an opportunity for future generations to live as equal partners of the country’s multifaceted development, President Maithripala Sirisena said yesterday.
Addressing the launching of the Western Region Megapolis Planning Project (WRMPP) he said the best example was the difference of living conditions of those occupying high rise luxury apartments and those living in the vicinity.
“Those lucky enough to have access to all good, beautiful and opulent things in life live a life of affluence with utmost comfort in the luxury apartments and those not so fortunate live in a slum nearby in abject poverty struggling to make ends meet. The government’s intention is to find a sustainable solution to this atrocious disparity through the WRMPP and give each and every Sri Lankan family a decent and dignified living by 2030,” the President said.
“The Mega City Project will not develop only Colombo but all other cities in the country equipped with all modern amenities like IT, new road networks, green parks for recreation, sports complexes, etc. The newly developed satellite cities will prevent people travelling to Colombo for their health and education needs and in search of employment.
“The government has marked 2016 as the year of the beginning of a new era that will achieve upper income group status for Sri Lanka by 2030 and the Centre of Excellence in Asia. We have the ability and skill to meet this goal through unity, harmony, cooperation and understanding among all Sri Lankans,” the President said.
He said when he and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe were selecting the ministers they mulled on the person to be selected to the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development and the first name that came to mind was that of Minister Ranawaka. The President said Minister Ranawaka had shown his colours when he was in charge of the Power and Energy Ministry and the Environment Ministry.
“He is a highly qualified professional with a clean sheet and the most qualified and suitable person to undertake this historical and national duty of taking Sri Lanka from an island to a continent,” the President said.
Minister Ranawaka and his Deputy Lasantha Alagiyawanna presented the WRMPP plan to the President, the Prime Minister and other dignitaries. (Sandun A Jayasekera)