The government has decided to resolve all appeals submitted last year by ‘Aswesuma’ beneficiaries by January 31.
The decision was taken at a special discussion held at the Temple Trees regarding the implementation and recovery of the ‘Aswesuma’ welfare benefit scheme, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said in a statement.
At the meeting presided over by PM Dinesh Gunawardena, it was also decided to call for new appeals for the second round by the first week of February, to set up a special appeals unit for each divisional secretariat and to appoint an officer for it at the village level.
Addressing the attendees, the Prime Minister said:
“A large number of people had doubts and fears that they would not get Aswesuma benefits. Everyone, including the district governors, implemented the resolution well, despite many problems. All the concerned officers including the district coordination committee chairpersons and village officials supported it. There were technical flaws. The Board of Directors worked to clarify them.
“The Aswesuma appeals program allows for several opportunities for future appeals. District governors and divisional secretaries resolve the problems arising during the appeal hearings. The technical problem came from the beginning. The capacity is not enough. Now there is a proper plan for the relief program. There are specific steps.
“In the two months of October and November, the village officials finished preparing all the voter registers. According to the constitution, there is a date on which the voting lists must be announced, so the village officials took steps to finish all the work on the voter registers accordingly. The relief program also needs such support. So far, the government’s poverty alleviation program has made great progress.”