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Sunday, 6 November 2005  
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Galle Face not so green

It is sad to see the sight of dying palmyra trees (Borassus flabellifer) along the road in Galle Face green.

These palm trees were not growing well since they were transplanted a few years ago.

Although some types of palms tolerate transplanting, palmyra palm may not tolerate transplanting. These ugly looking dead trees should be removed and planted with specially selected sea breeze resistant trees.

Some of the suitable trees are Mudilla (Barringtonia asiatica), Gan suriya (Thespesia populnea) Domba (Callophyllum inophyllum) Lettacochcha (Pisonia alba) Casuarina equisetifolia.

I would suggest to plant Mudilla trees which are found easily around Colombo. Medium sized trees should be root balled and transplanted in wooden containers incorporating coir dust, sand and little top soil.

Allow the trees to be established well in the containers for 10-12 months. Watering and fertilising should be done regularly to form a good root system. After establishing well the trees can be transplanted in the ground at 10-12 meters apart incorporating well decomposed compost, sand, coir dust and top soil. Planting should be done during rainy season.

Trees should be supported by strong stakes to protect from strong wing.

by Henry Rajapakse, Horticulturist,

Bouquet to NSB Manager

The pass book of my savings account opened for me at the post office, by my mother about 35 years ago, was recently misplaced by me.

Though this account had been transferred to the National Savings Bank, I had no record of the number or to which branch this account had been transferred.

However, I spoke to the Manager of the Nugegoda National Savings Bank and he requested to send him a letter with whatever details I had.

He kindly undertook to try and trace my account number. Sometime after I furnished these details he traced the number and forwarded the requisite forms to be completed by me to enable him to issue a new pass book.

Once this was done, in a short time, he requested me to call over and collect the new pass book. I write to place on record the patient and courteous manner of this gentleman, and the efficient way he handled this difficult problem.

His helpful attitude and dedication to duty are greatly appreciated. Officers of his calibre are a boon to the general public and I wish him success for the future.

I might add that the staff of this branch, like their Manager, are also polite and obliging. Good luck to them too.

by E. G. M. C. de Silva,

More flowers for NSB

A few days ago I wrote to National Savings Bank (NSB) Chairman, Cyril Herath to bring to his notice certain shortcomings at the NSB.

The letter was posted by me during the week-end and to my surprise on Tuesday morning around 9 a.m., I received a telephone call from Cyril Herath the Chairman himself.

The Chairman thanked me for bringing the shortcomings to his notice which he said would be taken up with the Senior Managers. I am happy that there are persons such as Herath at the head of a government institution.

Usually, when some shortcomings are pointed out the management either finds excuses or justices what was done I wish there are at least a few more officers such as Herath in the State and Corporation sector.

Another point I wish to make that the Chairman was at his desk by 9 a.m. whereas some heads of corporations are having breakfast in their homes, at this time.

I also want to bring to the notice my own experience at the office of the Registrar of Companies at Union Place.

I recall reading a letter written by a member of the public that his matters were attended to within a matter of minutes. My own experience is that the application I handed over for a Business Registration over a month ago and I am yet to receive the certificate of registration.

Also the instructions for filling of applications are not clearly stated in the form itself. Some new requirements such as certification by a JP is said to be put on the notice board.

by Thilak Fernando,
Colombo o6.

Fair election

Now that two 'gentlemen' are competing the presidential election, can we hope (against better judgment) that we will have a fair and lovely election?

Can the future contestants to the highest post of this country follow the following codes of conduct: No mud slinging on the personality of the opponent, inform clear defined principles they hope to impose on the country, country first, party second attitude, no posters, no polythene decorations and both contestants appearing on the same stage all over the country.

We are sick and tired of dirty politics of today and sincerely hope this will be the dawn of clean, gentlemanly politics.

by Dr. Mareena Thaha Reffair,

Medium of Instruction

Hats off to President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga for her timely decision to make the English language medium of instruction in all schools from the beginning of next year.

It is indeed a highly laudable decision, which many teachers and parents welcome.

Since we switched on to medium of instructions in the National languages the standard of English in our schools began to decline. As a matter of fact, there are many students who have reached the credit standard in English at the GCE O/L Examination, can neither speak nor write a few lines of English without murdering the Queen's Language.

A thorough knowledge of English is very essential in our fast moving world of science and technology.

by D. G. Ratnayake,

LTTE ambition

Recently the LTTE killed two principals of two leading colleges in Jaffna. This everyone know. They killed them because the two principals did not allow the students to participate in the Pongu Tamil Carnival held in Jaffna recently.

Their cowardly acts wont take the LTTE anywhere to achieve its ambition. If they are sole representatives of the Tamils they couldn't have done a thing like that.

Earlier also they murdered two Hindu priests. The majority of the Tamils are Hindus. When the time comes they will teach the LTTE a lesson.

When Charles Wijayawardene was murdered the LTTE blamed the people of incivil for this. Why? They wanted the armed forces to kill and attack the people to take revenge. Luckily this did not happen, why? Everyone knew that the LTTE was behind the murder of Charles Wijewardene.

In the name of freedom struggle we let them grow. It is our mistake.

They are using us as shields.

Now the Presidential election has come.

Don't miss this opportunity.

The Tamils and Muslims in the North and East should vote for Mahinda and teach a lesson to the LTTE which is a one man army dancing to the tunes of Prabhakaran who is a dictator and a murderer.

He wont die now. He will kill the last Tamil and die.

by T. Nadarajah.

PMG and Postal Service

The service was superb with exquisite interior to go with smiling service and conveniently available mailing stationery to complete the picture with a well manicured garden gives a taxpaying patron much satisfaction.

A daily newspaper referred this suburban post office 'State-of-the-art' once years ago. The good work goes on.

Complaints even proved with many self-addressed letters, that mails even with the much popular modern e-mail and faxes are still wanting and inefficient and late.

Anyway, never can the system of 'stamp issue' of any post office so far can be ever encouraged or imagined.

When a simple imprest of stamps to all counters recoverable at day as an internal arrangement, why people have to hop from counter to counter, queues to queues just for getting stamps from the only counter provided to cater for all stamp valuation of the many other counters is just beyond belief and shows lack of initiative.

by W. Meadows,

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