Bureaucrats put paid to govt. efforts to make expatriate Tamils invest here

By Jehan Haniff

The government had extended an open invitation to all Lankans living in exile to return to their homeland but many of them had not taken the message seriously, MP and leader of the People’s Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), Dharmalingam Siddarthan said yesterday.

He said the expatriate Tamil community did not believe in announcements made by the President and top government politicians locally and internationally because their decisions were not carried out by bureaucrats.

“I’m personally aware of two cases where expatriates wanted to invest here were driven from pillar to post and discouraged from making an investment.

“More than thirty per cent of the youth population in the North and East are unemployed and it is obvious that all of them cannot be provided with government jobs. Hence, the government must remove the bureaucratic red tape and encourage the private sector to invest if they are to genuinely find a solution to the unemployment issue in the North and East.”

Asked whether the government was not taking action to remedy the situation, the Tamil militant turned politician said: “The government is taking some action, but things are moving at a snail’s pace. Our people want things to happen faster. Investments for large, medium and small industries are vital, but who will invest when the bureaucracy remains a stumbling block?

According to the PLOTE leader the TNA has taken up the issue with the President and concerned politicians on several occasions but in vain.