President Maithripala Sirisena emphasized the need of active implementation of the Soil Conservation Act to protect the soil while preventing the increasing soil erosion day by day, as a result of the natural disasters as well as the results of the activities of the various illegal sand trading activities.
He made these remarks during a meeting with the officials of the Soil Conservation Board held at the Presidential Secretariat, yesterday (28th Sept.).
The President drew the attention of the officials regarding the dreadful situations occurred due to the blockage of water resources caused by rivers and streams bank erosions due to the sand and soil smugglings and he also emphasized the need to strengthen the legal system in order to prevent such situations.
The President pointed out the flaws in the technology used to prevent the leaking of soil from the mountains when constructing the highways and explained the importance of implementing the projects in the future giving priority to prevention of soil erosion.
The President instructed the officials to carry out programs on prevention of soil erosion not only in the Central Hills but also throughout the country, and instructions were also given to issue relevant circulars vesting the legal powers of the Act with the Districts Secretaries and Local Government Institutions.
He also instructed the relevant authorities to implement awareness programs on prevention of soil erosion in parallel to the battle of the national food production program which will be commenced from next month.
The Act aims at the conservation of soil resources for the prevention or mitigation of soil erosion and at the protection of land against damages by flood and drought.
The Soil Conservation Board, which was established under this Act, held this meeting after a lapse of two years, and the President emphasized the importance of carrying forward the work of the Soil Conservation Board in an efficient and novel manner to fulfill the national responsibility of protecting the soil for the future generations. He also advised the officials to summon a meeting in every six months headed by him.
Heads of all the Institutions including the Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture participated in this meeting.