The Auditor General as soon as practicable after the 31st day of December annually prepares a report on the administration of the affaires of the Presidentís Fund. The Auditor General also prepares a statement of the income and expenditure of the Fund and of the investments of the monies belonging to the Fund. These details are forwarded to the Parliament via the Minister in charge of the subject of Finance. A Helping-Hand to the Health Sector
medical units for Hospitals
In view of the increasing incidents of heart disease extensive funds were provided for the improvement of cardiothoracic facilities at the Colombo National Hospital and the Galle General Hospital. A further Rs. 65 Million was released for the improved facilities for cardiothoracic surgery and treatment at the Karapitiya hospital.
President's Fund granted Rs.10 Million to upgrade facilities of the
Government Ayurvedic Hospital in Pallekelle and Rs.12 Million to the
Ministry of Health to improve the facilities for the mentally ill who seek
treatment from state hospitals.
Supply of Medical Instruments
medical equipment enables quick and accurate diagnosis of illnesses, and
subsequently prompt and effective patient care. A sum Rs.40 Million from the
President's Fund was made available for the purchase of 2 MRI scanners for
the Colombo National Hospital. A further Rs.6 Million was granted to the Sri
Jayewardenepura General Hospital to purchase equipment for a new scoliosis
(spinal deformity) unit. A sum of Rs. 3 Million to purchase mammogram
machines for the Colombo National Hospital was granted. Rs.10.3 Million
was given to the Health Ministry for the purchase of 6 dialysis
machines for use in the Colombo National Hospital, the Kandy General
Hospital and the Karapitiya Teaching Hospital. A further Rs.110 Million was
released to the Colombo National Hospital, to equip the new cardiology
Financial Assistance for Needy Patients
During the period 1995 Ė 2004 the President's Fund disbursed a sum in excess of Rs. 2.5 Billion to an increasing number of patients suffering from life threatening diseases such as heart disease, kidney failure and cancer.
Fund also provides financial assistance to cancer patients to obtain costly
drugs. Kidney patients too have gained immense benefits from the President's
Fund. It is estimated that around 700 new cases of kidney failure occur
annually in Sri Lanka and each kidney transplant surgery costs more than
Rs.300, 000. The Fund granted Rs. 315.5 Million to kidney patients between
1995-2004. This has provided immense relief to hundreds of poor patients who
would have otherwise been unable to meet such high costs.
Religious and Cultural activities
President Chandrika Kumaratunga also expanded the Fundís scope to grant facilities for religious, sports and cultural activities. Thus, a sum of Rs.40 Million was granted to set up a welfare fund for low income performing artists, who will benefit from a monthly allowance. The Fund has also granted Rs.5 Million to the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports to set up 500 libraries in all electorates, to encourage the reading habit among youth. After alcohol and tobacco companies were prohibited from sponsoring sports events, the Presidentís Fund allocated Rs.40 Million for sports activities.
President's Fund has also provided much assistance in relation to religious
activities and institutions. The Buddha Sasana Ministry was granted Rs. 5
Million to construct a pilgrims' rest in New Delhi and a further Rs.10
Million was granted to the Ministry of Religious and Cultural Affairs to
provide desks and chairs for use at Sunday schools. Grants are also given
for urgent repairs to religious sites. For example, Rs.800, 000 was provided
for the renovation of the Tissamaharama Rajamaha Vihara Chetiya.
Developing the Education Sector
The Fund granted Rs. 100 Million to Sri Lankan innovators in order to encourage them to turn out devices utilizing local raw materials. Loan facilities are available under the Innovators Fund for creative persons who design equipment especially for use in the fields of agriculture and industry.
School activities such as
exhibitions are also supported by the President's Fund. For example Rs.100,
000 was granted to the "Pulathisi
Daruwo" exhibition held at Polonnaruwa Royal College.
The Presidential Scholarship Scheme for post graduate studies
Scholarship Scheme was revamped to grant 175 scholarships to University
Lecturers, Public Sector employees and their children and other bright youth
to follow academic and training courses in fields that would meet the
development needs of the country.
The Millennium Scholarship Scheme
A new scholarship scheme for G. C. E. A'Level students who excel in academic
and extra curricular activities, was launched with the new batch of A' Level
students in 2000.
Scholarship scheme for grade 6-11 students in Northeast Province
In 2002 a scheme to help the less affluent children in the Northeast to continue their studies
These disbursements are few among the many other grants made by the President's Fund in recent times. The selective disbursement of President's Fund monies has enabled the funding of worthy humanitarian causes, thereby affording much needed relief, particularly to the poorer segments of the population. The President's Fund has indeed shed a bright ray of hope illumining the lives of thousands of the less fortunate people of this country.
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