Education Minister says President Jayewardene, an example to politicians

Late President J. R. Jayewardene was a pragmatic and farsighted leader who enabled the country to keep pace with modern international trends. Present day politicians have much to learn from his biography. The manner in which he steered the country overcoming problems and obstacles with patience and finesse was a fine example to present day politicians, Education Minister and UNP General Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said.

He was addressing the gathering at the 112th birth anniversary commemoration of late President J R Jayewardene held at the Jathika Sevaka Sangamaya headquarters at Pitakotte yesterday( 17).Minister Kariyawasam said late President Jayewardene was instrumental in introducing the free market economy to Sri Lanka after the UNP victory in 1977.

“Since the beginning of his political life, President Jayewardene believed that the country should keep pace with international trends if it was to attain economic and social development.President Jayewardene was also an internationally acclaimed world leader. Japan in particular fondly remembers and holds him in high esteem for the historic speech he made at the San Francisco Peace Conference as Finance Minister of Sri Lanka,” the UNP General Secretary said.

“The UNP oriented Jathika Sevaka Sangamaya was the brainchild of late President Jayewardene. He had a very soft corner in his heart for the Jathika Sevaka Sangamaya and always endeavoured to safeguard the rights of its membership,” he said.Minister Kariyawasam said that UNP re-organisation work would be undertaken in a democratic manner in order to strengthen the party and help it forward march. The party had already made vast strides and moved forward after the setback it suffered at the last Local Government elections.

The party machinery will be strengthened at all levels by opening new branch offices countrywide,” Minister Kariyawasam said. “The party’s future programme of work would be decided at the Party’s Working Committee meeting. Their target was to win the election in 2020,” he added.Earlier Minister Kariyawasam paid floral tributes at the J.R. Jayewardene statue at the Jathika Sevaka Sangamaya headquarters. Floral tributes were also placed by JSS General Secretary and Parliamentarian Sirinal de Mel and JSS Vice President and Media Secretary Sunil de Silva.