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CEO of De La Rue, Martin Sutherland presents the first 5000 rupee note signed by Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera.

Rejects the Dr. de Silva report outright

The Government Medical Officers Association (GMOA) informed that they totally rejected the report of the Presidential committee appointed to resolve issues relating to the South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) and would be continuing their combined protest actions.

The GMOA, the general committee of which met over the weekend, whilst warning the Government to not go ahead with the implementation of the said report’s recommendations, will be going ahead with their proposed protest action including token strikes, which will also have the support of all health sector trade unions including those in the nursing services and minor staff, and elsewhere, education sector trade unions (university lecturers, school teachers and principals), with the view of achieving the abolition of the SAITM.

The five member committee chaired by Deputy Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva proposed the abolition of the current shareholder and management structure of the SAITM, the creation of a new entity that is not-for-profit with a broad-based ownership structure (may take the form of a public-private partnership) that conforms to the minimum standards and other quality control measures, the gazetting of the minimum standards for medical education and training by the Ministry of Health (the process to be completed by November 30), the expediting of the establishment of an Independent Quality Assurance and Accreditation Authority (IQAAA) which will work in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) on the evaluation and accreditation of medical degree programmes (on the basis of the minimum standards and the provisions of the IQAAA Act), to determine an appropriate legally binding time bound mechanism to inform the SAITM to suspend the admission of new students until proposed restructuring is complete and fresh approvals are granted, and to appoint a high powered committee to oversee the completion of the report’s recommendations.

The GMOA also rejected the President’s media statement, made following the release of the said report by the politically motivated committee. A GMOA appointed committee headed by Vice President of the GMOA, Dr. A.D.T.M.S.S. Tennakone too produced a report rejecting the de Silva report.