Warm greetings for an active, energetic and joyous 2007.
On the 26th of December 2006, disaster struck our land causing destruction as never seen before. The extent of the destruction and the pain caused was there for all to see.
The emotional wounds caused will be very difficult to heal for years to come. The sad thing however is that the physical wounds still remain and the people continue to suffer the ignominy of being homeless, hungry and desperate.
To say nothing has been done will be wrong. Many organisations both local and foreign, the government, all religious establishments and many others all did do something to help and many communities who were affected have been able to get back on their feet.
However what was done was far from substantial. It is clear that while certain areas thanks to the weight of some of the politicians involved in those areas, other areas have been left to rot...
A decent portion of the south are getting close to being back on track. However many areas in the east (Ampara in particular) are still as desolate as could be.
It is indeed disappointing to note how politicians have maneuvered funds to their strongholds and left other areas to scrounge for scraps from the table. Absolutely no justice has been done for the amount of funds received for relief and reconstruction. It is no secret that a good portion of this money has ended up in the pockets of our country's leaders. Due to the misappropriation of funds some of the pledged sums of money have not been received.
It is also interesting to note how our great leaders have all the money in the world to spend on a massive number of billboards exalting themselves all over the country which are of no benefit to the nation, but people displaced by the tsunami are still in refugee camps.
What was amazing immediately after the Tsunami in 2004 was how the entire nation rallied round to give their support to those who were affected. The enthusiasm with which everybody pitched in to help slowly faded away with time. The media and other commercial organisations who made a tremendous effort soon after the Tsunami slowly lost the drive which they used to spur up the country to help their citizens.
Now there exist very small groups of people who still help those whose lives were torn apart by the waves. They too are frustrated by the lack of financial and material assistance available for them to help.
It is indeed upto each one of us to look to do our part to bring normalcy back into the lives of our fellow citizens. If those in authority aren't interested in the people, we in our small way will have to help in whatever way we can.
For those who lost their loved ones, their homes and their livelihood after the 26th December 2004, days have turned to months, months to years and possibly years to a lifetime...