Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka: Cabinet sub committee to find ways to minimise flood-threat

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Mass Media and Information Minister, Anura Priyadharshana Yapa addressing the media at the Cabinet Press Briefing this morning (June 5), announced that a Cabinet Sub Committee will be appointed soon to prepare a sustainable flood-prevention programme.

Meanwhile, Rohitha Abeygunawardena, Minister of Nation Building said that the amount allocated for each flood victim per day has been increased from Rs. 70 to Rs 100 and that the allocation for rebuilding a damaged house has been raised from Rs. 50,000 to Rs. 100,000.

He further stated that areas such as Bulathsinhala, Kalutara and Millaniya had suffered much as a result of the recent floods. Helicopters had to be deployed to reach the victims since all other access routes were under water, he said.

In particular, Millaniya had to be reached using speed boats belonging to tourist hotels, he said, adding that infant milk food, medicines and dry rations had been provided to the victims. He expressed gratitude to the World Food Programme for providing continuous assistance to the ministry in this regard.

Although it had been proposed that the mouth of the Kaluganga be expanded, this would cause much damage to the town as well as the Sacred Bo Tree at Kalutara, he pointed out.

Thirteen persons have been reported dead in Kalutara as a result of the floods. Over 30,000 families and around 119,000 people have been adversely effected, he said.

Already steps have been taken to minimize the threat of water-borne diseases breaking out in the post-flood scenario, he said.

The minister in particular expressed his thanks to the fisher folk in the Beruwala and Kalutara areas who had voluntarily provided their vessels for relief operations.