Committee appointed to discuss steps to form UPFA Government

A committee has been appointed to discuss steps to be taken to form a United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) Government.Joint opposition Parliamentarian Dinesh Gunawardena and UPFA member and Minister Susil Premajayantha will head the committee. The joint opposition says it will support forming a UPFA Government without taking any Ministerial posts. (Colombo Gazette)

Responding to UN appeal Japan pledges humanitarian aid for Afghanistan

The Japanese contribution of $410,000 is earmarked for the Poverty Eradication and Community Empowerment (P.E.A.C.E) programme of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Afghanistan and came in response to a UN appeal for humanitarian aid.Despite considerable progress in recent years to re-establish water supplies, inadequate stores of safe drinking water still remains a serious problem, particularly in drought affected areas where groundwater levels have dropped severely, the UN Coordinator said.The goal of the water and sanitation service is to improve the health and quality of life of Afghans through access to safe drinking water facilities, community awareness of health, hygiene, and sanitation. Sustained and equal access to quality services will support refugee returns to Afghanistan as well, the UN Coordinator said.Providing safe drinking water is also expected to cause a drastic reduction in the number of water-born diseases such as cholera, typhoid, dysentery and gastroenteritis, thus lowering the morbidity and infant mortality rates in Afghanistan, which are amongst the highest in the world. read more