22nd February 2012, www.dailynews.lk
Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa yesterday instructed his Ministry officials to work with UN agencies, INGOs and NGOs on a Joint Action Plan of Assistance for the Northern Province in 2012.
This is in order to identify the priority activities, that must be undertaken during 2012, and to facilitate international assistance, so that the people of the Northern Province can recover, rebuild and return to a normal life.
The Joint Action Plan for Assistance (JPA) for the Northern Province 2012 was launched yesterday at the Economic Development Ministry, by the government together with the United Nations and the broader humanitarian community in the presence of Minister Rajapaksa.
Agriculture, shelter, livelihoods, fisheries, water and sanitation, electricity, education, health and nutrition and banking will be the key areas that would be focused on through the initiatives of this joint plan of assistance.
The joint plan for assistance for the Northern Province 2012 is the result of this consultative process led by the Economic Development Ministry through the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on assistance needed during 2012 to help people in the Northern Province to recover and rebuild their lives.
Upon the Ministry’s invitation this process was undertaken jointly with the United Nations and its agencies (UN), national and international Non-Government Organizations and International Organizations.
The successful experiences gained during last year in jointly providing humanitarian assistance to the people in the North through the 2011 JPA was considered a best practice and initiated the 2012 planning process.
The JPA was developed through a consultative process led by the government through the Presidential Task Force for Resettlement, Development and Security (PTF) and the United Nations, national and international Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and International Organizations (IOs).
The JPA provides a framework for meeting immediate needs of the resettled communities in the Northern Province while linking humanitarian interventions to longer-term development efforts including the priorities of building houses and shelters, supporting agriculture, food security and livelihood recovery.
Speaking at the JPA launch, Secretary to the PTF S B Divaratne appreciated the contribution made by the broader humanitarian community and the development partners to the government to make significant progress in the North.
The United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Subinay Nandy noted that “increasingly we are seeing a shift from pure humanitarian response interventions to collaborating with government on longer term development requirements for the same people. This will be the way to go, as we together ensure that we do not leave behind any individuals or groups who need direct assistance.”
The Government, UN and the humanitarian community calls upon donors to support this joint initiative which has been a monumental step forward in providing assistance to those most in need.
Delivering a message from President Mahinda Rajapaksa, the President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, Hon Basil Rajapaksa said that the government and the farmers associtions in Sri Lanka will give 500 mt of paddy to the World Food Programme (WFP) as government’s contribution to JPA 2012.
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