1 December, 2020

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Unemployed Graduates; The Worst Affected Are Tamil Youth

By R. Sampanthan

R. Sampanthan

Having moved my Adjournment Motion, Sir, may I have your indulgence to make a few comments in regard to that. According to figures available, in the Northern Province, there are 4,429 unemployed graduates while in the Eastern Province, the number is around 4,500. I might say that the number of unemployed graduates in the Northern and the Eastern Provinces is much higher than the number of unemployed graduates in other provinces in the country. Comparatively, the Northern and the Eastern Provinces are in a much worse off position than the graduates in the other provinces. I will give the Government some details in regard to unemployment, particularly in the Eastern Province. My Colleagues, who will speak after me, will be furnishing some details in regard to unemployment in the Northern Province.

Full text of the speech made by R. Sampanthan in Parliament on the 24th of May 2017:

ගරු රාජවරෝදියම් සම්පන්දන් මහතා (විරුද්ධ පාර්ශ්වයේ නායකතුමා)

(மாண்புமிகு ராஜவரோதயம் சம்பந்தன் – எதிர்க்கட்சி முதல்வர்)

(The Hon. Rajavarothiam Sampanthan – Leader of the Opposition)

Mr. Deputy Speaker, I move the following Adjournment Motion:

Whereas unemployment amongst youth both males and females, after qualifying as graduates has been an acute problem in the Northern and Eastern Provinces in Sri Lanka.

And whereas this problem has been accentuated in the Northern and Eastern Provinces over a period of time as a consequence of (i) diminishing employment opportunities (ii) lack of regular recruitment to public service (iii) lack of employment opportunities in the private sector.

And whereas this situation had come about, as a result of the violence and instability that has prevailed in the Northern and Eastern Provinces consequent to the armed conflict that had prevailed for almost three decades.

And whereas it is now eight years since the armed conflict came to an end but this issue of unemployment amongst educated youth has remained unaddressed.

And whereas thousands of youth both in the Northern and Eastern Provinces have in the past several weeks continued to stage demonstrations to emphasize their plight and to urge that their grievances be suitably addressed.

And whereas the Chief Ministers of the Northern and Eastern Provinces, other Ministers and officials of the said provinces have had discussions with His Excellency the President, the Hon. Prime Minister, other Ministers and officials of the Central Government to address this issue in a meaningful way.

And whereas there are vacancies and unfilled positions in both the Central Public Service and in the Provincial Public Services of the Northern and Eastern Provinces, which if filled could address this issue of unemployment amongst unemployed graduates in the Northern and Eastern Provinces at least to some extent.

And whereas youth from all ethnic groups are amongst the unemployed graduates, the worst affected were Tamil youth who were the most victimized as a result of the war and as a step to promote reconciliation and return to normal life, employment of these unemployed graduates should be addressed as a matter of urgency in the Northern and Eastern Provinces.

I therefore urge that the Government meaningfully addresses and resolves this issue at the earliest, also in consultation with the Chief Ministers of the Northern and Eastern Provinces.”

Having moved my Adjournment Motion, Sir, may I have your indulgence to make a few comments in regard to that. According to figures available, in the Northern Province, there are 4,429 unemployed graduates while in the Eastern Province, the number is around 4,500. I might say that the number of unemployed graduates in the Northern and the Eastern Provinces is much higher than the number of unemployed graduates in other provinces in the country. Comparatively, the Northern and the Eastern Provinces are in a much worse off position than the graduates in the other provinces. I will give the Government some details in regard to unemployment, particularly in the Eastern Province. My Colleagues, who will speak after me, will be furnishing some details in regard to unemployment in the Northern Province.

According to the information available, Sir, there are 4,784 vacancies for teachers in the Eastern Province. I discussed this matter with the Chief Minister this morning and I was told by him that approval has been granted by the Management Services Division and the Finance Division to recruit 1,700 graduates immediately as teachers and they are expecting financial approval for yet about another 900 graduates shortly. The approval for the employment of the balance 1,535 of the cadre is expected to be received shortly and that should be expedited. If these vacancies, the vacancies that exist in regard to teaching in the Eastern Province, are filled, Sir, the number of unemployed graduates in that province would be substantially reduced. Apart from that, there are vacancies in the different Ministries in the Eastern Province. In the Chief Minister’s Office, there are 351 vacancies; in the Ministry of Health, there are 341 vacancies; in the Ministry of Agriculture, there are 558 vacancies and in the Ministry of Education, there are 1,535 vacancies, totaling in all to 2,785 vacancies. The Chief Minister has discussed this matter with the President and he has been given the assurance that this matter will be dealt with early.

I also wish to mention, Sir, that while graduates are recruited, the vacancies for graduates in the fine arts sector related to the culture of the Tamil people – music, both vocal and instrumental, and dance and drama, which are important aspects of education – also need to be addressed.            

One problem that we have, Sir, in the recruitment of graduates is the age limit. Presently the age limit is 35 and under. I think this should be altered given the conditions that have prevailed in the North and the East over the past 30 years. This age limit should be increased to at least 40, if not a little beyond that, because the number of persons who are qualified to be appointed and who are unemployed are not in a position to apply for an appointment in view of the fact that their age is a barrier to recruitment.

I think, Sir, it would not be wrong to state that there is a responsibility on the part of the Government, on the part of the State to provide employment to educated youth. Of course, this will also depend to a large extent on the level of development that has taken place in the country and it may be on account of the conflict that we have had for 30 years we have not developed to the extent to which we should have developed. We are, therefore, somewhat seriously handicapped in the matter of being able to provide employment to our educated youth and consequently, educated youths are being deprived of leading a decent life and making their own contribution towards the development of the country. I think, Sir, the Government should address this issue as a very serious issue, particularly when the Government is committed to a process of reconciliation and return to normal life in the war-affected, conflict-ridden areas, the Northern and the Eastern Provinces. The Government, I think, is under obligation to address this matter meaningfully and purposefully, to deal with this question in an effective and meaningful way.

I want to mention the fact that on two prior occasions – one is during the time of President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga and again during the time of President Mahinda Rajapaksa – a large number of graduates were recruited from throughout the country. They were paid a nominal salary to start with, but they were given a training and according to the training given to them, they were absorbed into the Public Service later, after that training had been completed. The Government should seriously consider adopting a step of that nature where people are recruited, given some training and thereafter they are provided with employment consistent with the training that they have undergone.

We would appeal to the Government to regard this issue as a very serious issue because the people in the Northern and the Eastern Provinces  who  have been  the victims of the war for several decades have many complaints to make in regard to missing persons in their families, in regard to their lands being occupied by the armed forces and not being released, in regard to persons being held in custody, in regard to rehabilitation, resettlement, housing, employment – various matters, and the demonstrations being carried out by educated youth, graduates in the Northern and the Eastern provinces are yet another sad phenomenon. I do not think that should continue and we would appeal to the Government to take some action to bring about some alleviation in the situation at the earliest.

Thank you, Sir.

ගරු නියෝජ්‍ය කථානායකතුමා

(மாண்புமிகு பிரதிச் சபாநாயகர் அவர்கள்)

(The Hon. Deputy Speaker)

The Hon. Gnanamuthu Srineshan will be seconding the Motion and after that the Hon. Sagala Ratnayaka will speak.

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Latest comments

  • 9
    8

    When will these Tamil leaders realize that employers of a country, where 85% of the population is Sinhalese , will seek employees who are fluent in Sinhalese? Why don’t these Tamil leaders highlight the importance of learning Sinhalese to improve their lives rather than play discrimination and brain wash Tamils, so that they can stay in power??

    • 3
      0

      CT what the hell is going on with your new look news comment board??
      Cannot get previous comments ! No mention of earlier comments and where to click!!
      Come on CT
      I don’t like the new look column!!
      Cat whose side are you now?? For us the people or have you been bought or suppressed by the Parliament Mafias or been bought by the Fallen Mafias ???
      Help!!!! Please reply!!!!

    • 1
      3

      Nuisance the racist pariah is back.

      • 3
        1

        Tamil from the north

        Unless learning Sinhalese and improving their lives, Tamils will be foolish pariahs for ever.

    • 0
      0

      Because Tamil IS THE TOPMOST Language in the world!
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7GC8mwFimo

      • 1
        0

        Good for you. So, what? People of which language have progressed the most?

    • 3
      0

      I totally agree, young unemployed Tamils must learn to speak fluent English and Sinhala languages; instead of wasting their times on protesting for jobs. I spoke to the people in Jaffna who protest for jobs. Their English knowledge is very poor; I wouldn’t employ them.

      • 0
        2

        Antany Peter ————— Its you Peter. How are you?

  • 3
    1

    Didn’t Dr Ranil do anything after listening to Vellala CM’s demands to absorb those graduates to the NP council gigs and the rest as ASPs?……

    • 3
      4

      KASmaalam K A Sumanasekerak————————————————— If you really care about your brethren show and train Vellala CV Wigi, Trinco Sam, Vellala Abraham Suma, ……………………… how to steal from the state coffer and cook the books. Once they are house trained they will work hard and keep their mouth shut. You also mentally train them to be greedy all the time. They need on the job training, case studies, Clan, Dutta Gamani, Basil, 10%, 20%, 30% …….. Introduce them to a few b***s carriers who will keep the Vellalas interested in money and money alone. ——————— Will you accept the offer if you are invited to carry their b***s?

  • 5
    4

    Eusense.

    So,if these unemployed grads learn Sinhalese they will be given employment eh?
    Or to put it in another way,these graduates are unemployed because they are Tamils eh?
    Eusense,what ever said and done you do not hide your prejudices!

    • 7
      4

      Plato
      You consider this as prejudice ? Why not as some advice? This is the problem with stupid Tamils, they consider everything SL does as prejudice or discriminatory! Get rid of your foolish habit. If you take this path Tamils will never achieve anything. Look what happened to your terrorism.
      Nobody will give employment just for nothing because you are Sinhalese or Tamil. You need to sell your self by showing what you can do to increase productivity of your employer.
      If I am employing I will look for a candidate who can deal with all 3 language. I am not stupid to employ someone who speaks only Tamil.
      Don’t be foolish to look at everything as Tamil vs Sinhalese!

    • 3
      3

      Plato: YOu Tamils live all over thr world. What is the language that use inthe work place ? IS it Tamil ? You Tamils are not 100%. what is the percentage of Tribalists Tamils who want every thing free, a separate country, separate language, separate govt and the govt provided employment too ?

      • 2
        3

        Jim Softy the Dimwit—————————-“what is the percentage of Tribalists Tamils who want every thing free, a separate country, separate language, separate govt and the govt provided employment too ?” —————————————The Tamils probably would have learnt it from their Sinhala brethren. —————Free rice from moon, Sinhala only separate language, a Separate Sinhala/Buddhist kingdom or exclusive Sinhala/Buddhist ghetto in the deep south, exclusive right to mis-rule, …..

    • 3
      3

      Why Mr. Sambanthan did not write the article in Tamil ?

    • 2
      2

      Plato.————- How determined are you to get yourself insulted by a geriatric, bigoted, …..stupid? Now you will see the other geriatric, bigoted, …..stupid sach will appear from nowhere.

      • 3
        2

        Stupid Vedda

        Why don’t you give some kind of rebuttal rather than vomiting garbage?

    • 2
      1

      Plato: what do you want every thing free and not because of the market needs or work places needs. Why you people don’t understand that your stupid logics do not work ?.

      Ask wiggie to provide employent to all of them because, he is talking with his big mouth.

  • 7
    2

    Why the hell the the government is planning to bring teachers from India to teach science and maths to Tamil students in the central part of Sri Lanka. Why Vignashwaran or Sambandan object to that. I am wondering whether Jaffna Tamils are not willing to go and teach plantation Tamils who belong to low caste. This is happening even before signing ETCA. What will be the situation after signing ETCA?

    • 1
      0

      The plan to bring Indian teachers is promoted by the Minister of Resettlement, Reconstruction and Hindu Religious Affairs D M Swaminathan. He is worried that N&E Tamil teachers may influence the minds of so-called plantation Tamils.

      Swaminahan is extra keen on the ArcelorMittal steel sheds that Moratuwa and Peradeniya universities declared unsuitable. Sampanthan and Vigneswaran had absolutely no say in the two matters. By the way why the hell you bringing this non-existing caste divide?

  • 7
    2

    Mr. Sampanthan must be telling Tamil unemployed graduates that there are no unemployed Sinhala graduates. Only the Tamils have the problem. He is the Leader of the Opposition but always talk only the problems of Tamils. Has he ever raised a problem or issue related to all the communities in Sri Lanka?

    • 1
      1

      Eagle Eye: No no no. Sampanthan is saying that the percentage-wise Tamil unemployed graduates is much above national average. With such blurred vision how do you hunt your prey Eagle Eye?

  • 3
    4

    It is interesting to see the comments of some Sinhala readers who seem to make fun of the plight of unemployed Tamil graduates and their leader Sampanthan. They don’t realize that downfall of one region or one sector can drag the whole country down. Poverty will breed crime,disease and all other antisocial elements. If you neglect a wound in your foot you may end up losing your leg or your whole life. So will be the fate of srilanka.

    • 2
      2

      James
      The Moda Singhle can only see up to their feet no further, they’re dumb and blind ,
      So don’t waste your breath.
      They’re good at plundering the state wealth not realising what the effect of the country and people.
      Literacy level has gone to the level of no return.the country is left with Dumbs like Eusence and other Racists

      • 3
        2

        Analyst————-“the country is left with Dumbs like Eusence and other Racists” ———Are you determined to insult dumbs?

        • 4
          3

          stupid vedda

          why don’t you contribute something worthwhile. Stop dumbing yourself down!

      • 4
        3

        Not so smart analyst,

        Explain what is racist and dumb about my advice to plato and other stupid Tamils who write here. Using words like bigot, racist are not arguments it only shows lack of intellect.

      • 4
        2

        Analyst,

        May be the Moda Singhle can only see up to their feet no further, they’re dumb and blind but they were great in fighting against the rouge South Hindian armies who invaded Sri Lanka including the latest one launched by Prabhakaran and chase them back to where they belong. If Tamils are smart as they claim, Tamil Nadu should be the most prosperous place in the world. But that has been the poorest place in Hindia. That is why British took Tamils as slaves to their colonies. British brought part of that cesspool and dumped them in Central part of Sri Lanka.

        “Literacy level has gone to the level of no return.” In 2015, Maldives 99%, Sri Lanka 93%, India 72%, Nepal 64%, Bangladesh 61%, Pakistan 58%. In Sri Lanka, literacy rate is low because of Dalits and Muslim women.

    • 2
      1

      We really sympathize with the plight of the unemployed Tamil graduates. I myself went through that hell. Unemployment among graduates is a national problem. There are protest marches from unemployed Sinhala graduates. I do not think that Tamil TV show any of these things. We have a problem with Wellala politicians who provide distorted information for their political gains. One reason for graduate unemployment is mushrooming of universities all over Sri Lanka using public funds and providing free education to produce unemployable graduates. There may be vacancies in schools but the unemployed graduates have the qualifications to fill those vacancies is an issue. That could be the reason why the Government decided to bring teachers from India to teach Science and Maths to Tamil students in plantations. If there are Tamil graduates who can do this job, tell your politicians to protest. According to my information they are going to pay Rs.100,000 a month for these teachers when they can hire two Sri Lankan Tamils with that money.

      • 0
        0

        At current Exchange rates, Indians have to at Rs. 100,000/- whilst Sri Lankan at Rs. 50,000/-.
        Is this correct?

  • 2
    1

    The fundamental problem is in the Sri Lankan education system. Large number of graduates who are unemployed are Arts degree holders. Sri Lanka does not need this many graduates with Arts degrees. Instead we should focus more on Science, Technology, Commerce and vocational training.

  • 4
    2

    That’s why they should have done their studies in SINHALA medium, the only official language in Sri Lanka. If anyone wants to study in TAMIL medium, then enroll in a TAMIL NADU university, find a job in TAMIL NADU,and settle down in TAMIL NADU. If anyone wants to find employment in Sri Lanka, they must be fluent in Sinhalese.

    • 0
      2

      Johnny Dumb
      Another Dumb racist

  • 0
    0

    Sampanthan Aiyya……Now…. Now ComE Out With Facts ,Because You People Are World Famous As A Race Of True Pure Bred Human Beings…Always YELLING the Truth ……..UNEMPLOYED TERRORISTS-WORST EFFECTED ARE THE TAMILS

  • 1
    2

    Native.
    Your line……..
    Plato— How determined are you to get yourself insulted by a geriatric,bigoted— stupid?

    You may have noticed that I do not respond to the comments of Jim Softy.
    It would be infradig to do so!

  • 2
    0

    So, how many Tamil graduates are employed? Can Sampanthan give a figure for that too. How exactly are the Tamil youth more affected than the other youth by this problem? Can he give us statistics about this too.

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