Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Needed: A different war - The Island Editorial

It is heartening that a project has been launched to rehabilitate street children living in appalling conditions. Ven. Elle Gunawansa Thera yesterday spelt out measures to be adopted to deliver those unfortunate ones from their suffering. This noble cause deserves public support and State assistance.

IGP Jayantha Wickrameratna flanking Ven. Gunawansa at a media briefing yesterday viewed the rehabilitation of street children as an effective way of starving the underworld of recruitment in the future. One could not agree with him more!

More than one half of people in the Colombo City live in slums and shanties and some of their offspring also end up in the underworld. The rehabilitation of marginalized children is therefore not only a meritorious deed but also a prerequisite for preventing them from falling prey to anti-social elements and ensuring social well-being..

Underpinning the IGP's statement at issue is the age-old bromide that prevention is better than cure. However, the police must not lose sight of the pressing need to take drastic action against the prevailing crime syndicates which have made this country unsafe for children and grown-ups alike. Terrorism has been defeated and the long arm of the law is now without an excuse for its failure to combat crime and raise the woefully low conviction rate which stands at four per cent.

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