From the Sunday Observer (Sri Lanka)

Special officers to implement Language Policy

by Don Asoka Wijewardena

Obstacles have arisen in implementing the Official Language Policy (OLP) on a district basis. The main problems are the dearth of qualified staff and lack of institutional machinery, said Official Languages Commission Chairman Raja Collure at a workshop on "implementation of the Official Languages Policy in local government authorities in the Gampaha District held at Golden Star Hotel, Negombo on September 26.

Collure said that the recent survey conducted by the Official Languages Commission had revealed that a large number of vacancies in the post of Tamil typists and translators in several government institutions had not been filled so far.

He also said that in accordance with the provisions of the 13th and 16th amendments to the Constitution of 1978 Sinhala and Tamil were the official languages and English was the link language.

When asked about the implementation of official languages policy in local government authorities, Collure said that the Government had decided that Secretaries of every Ministry, Heads of Departments, Chief Secretaries of Provincial Councils, Heads of Government Corporations and Statutory Bodies would be designated as Chief Official Languages Implementation Officers (COLIO) responsible for the due implementation of the Official Languages Policy while Senior Assistant Secretaries (Administration) of every Ministry and Deputies (Administration) in every Department, Local Body, Provincial Council, Government Corporation and Statutory Body would also be designated as official languages implementation officers in their central and divisional offices.