New laws to use uncultivated lands for agricultural purposes: Minister

Colombo, May 21 (Daily Mirror)- New laws are being introduced to facilitate the use of uncultivated land for agricultural purposes as land is vital for social empowerment, State Minister for Social Empowerment Anupa Pasqual said today.

The State Minister also said that the government has decided to incorporate a Skills or Professional stream into the G.C.E (Ordinary Level) Examination syllabus to promote social empowerment.

He made these remarks during a media briefing under the theme “Collective Path to a Stable Country” held at the Presidential Media Centre (PMC) today.

“A fundamental ideology we have advocated is the need for educational system reforms to uplift society. Hence, individuals should not be labelled as failures in examinations solely due to struggles in subjects like Maths, religion or language at the G.C.E (O/L) examinations. Therefore, the government has resolved to integrate skills-based or vocational streams into the G.C.E (O/L) Examination syllabus. 

“This concept reflects societal acceptance. Accordingly, the Ministry of Education plans to implement this initiative from the beginning of next year. It is imperative to note that forthcoming educational reforms aim to cultivate skilled professionals.

"We have recognized numerous uncultivated lands across the country. These lands should be utilized for agricultural purposes. Land holds a pivotal importance in social empowerment. Steps are underway to enact new legislations facilitating the utilization of uncultivated but arable land.

“Our stand is that pensions should be given to all to empower the entire country. To achieve this, we propose a contributory pension scheme encompassing not only the public and private sectors but also all self-employed individuals. 

“Simultaneously, we must devote ourselves to fostering an entrepreneurial culture within the country. Additionally, access to vocational education should be extended to all as part of our efforts to drive the country towards development," State Minister Anupa Pasqual said.

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