29th June 2018 15:46:17 Hours
At the invitation of the Commander, Security Forces - East (SF-E), Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander of the Army as one more segment of his itinerary in the East on Thursday (28) went to the 24 Division Headquarters in Ampara and spoke to the troops serving there during his first formal visit.
Major General Mahinda Mudalige, General Officer Commanding, 24 Division warmly received the visiting Army Chief and conducted him to the assembly area where 700 of All Ranks, including more than 50 Officers were awaiting to listen to him.
In his elaborate address to the occasion, the day's Chief Guest spelt out his vision and the mission and wanted everyone to act accordingly while performing their share of responsibilities to the best of their ability. “We are in a fast changing context as the most sought service provider of the country since the Army is now dedicated to reach its ‘capacity-based’ formula to better serve our nation. As I have repeatedly pointed out, you all need to contribute one third of your service for ‘nation-building’ while the remaining two third should be for ‘combat training’ and ‘administration’ respectively. You are members of a proud organization and it should always maintain its dignified image by practicing the highest standards of discipline at all times. It is the essence of our forward-march where the common people judge us”.
“Similarly, the role of NCOs in the Army has come to the fore as one more essential segment of the organization and efforts are being made to expose them to different aspects of their career training including even overseas assignments. While serving in a district where all three major ethnic communities are living in harmony, we have a lot to learn and share. Such experiences undoubtedly would provide the organization with an inspiring motivation, through which you would strongly be able to serve better as you go on collecting more and more mature exposures”, the Commander added.
A little later, Major General Mahinda Mudalige, General Officer Commanding, 24 Division awarded a special memento to the Commander of the Army, appreciating his arrival at the 24 Division Headquarters. In return, the Commander also made a symbolic donation for construction work inside the premises.
His stay there was made more memorable afterwards when the Commander of the Army was invited to make the inaugural warming of the newly-erected accommodation building for Officers in the premises. As in the previous instance at the CTS Ampara, the Commander of the Army invited one of the Majors in the 24 Division Headquarters to cut the ribbon for opening after the Commander unveiled the main plaque, giving memories to the occasion.
Before his departure, the Commander as another segment in the programme, planted a mango sapling in the premises. An All Rank tea table brought the arrangements at the 24 Division Headquarters to end.
Major General Santhusitha Pananwala, Commander, Security Forces - East, all Brigade Commanders, Commanding Officers and Staff Officers also participated in the series of events.