04th March 2017 20:27:47 Hours
HE the President Maithripala Sirisena, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, together with a few Cabinet Ministers, Acting Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Tri-Service Commanders, Inspector General of Police (IGP) and senior government officials from Colombo flew to Jaffna on Saturday (4) to attend a series of meetings.
The Commander-in-Chief arrived in Palaly in the morning and was received by the CDS, Tri-Service Commanders, IGP, tri-service formation Commanders and senior Police officials in Jaffna to a warm welcome.
Troops of the Security Force Headquarters - Jaffna (SFHQ-J) in line with military traditions accorded a drive-past Guard Turnout to the visiting Commander-in-Chief who was making his first formal visit to the Jaffna Security Force Headquarters upon assumption of office as the 6th Executive President of Sri Lanka, in January 2015.
Soon after the military formalities, the visiting Commander-in-Chief was invited to plant a ‘Naa’ sapling at the SFHQ-J premises as a symbol of memory of his visit.
The first item in the agenda was the cordial meeting the President has had with a representative gathering of ex-servicemen resident in Jaffna.
The visit was made more memorable, just minutes after the meeting by awarding each of them with a cash gift of Rs 10,000/- plus a gas cooker.
HE the President afterwards posed for a group photograph with those representative ex-servicemen at the invitation of those retired servicemen.
Minutes later, CDS, tri-service Commanders, IGP and all officials sat together for a brief meeting and discussed matters of security and general concern in the peninsula.
President Maithripala Sirisena then went to the Sri Lanka Air Force hangar where an estimated gathering of 4000 tri-service troops and Police personnel were awaiting to listen to the visiting Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.
Major General Nirmal Darmarathna, General Officer Commanding, 55 Division of the SFHQ-J saluted the day’s Chief Guest and reported the gathering to him.
Major General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander, Security Force - Jaffna (SF-J) delivered the formal welcome address on behalf of Jaffna tri-service troops and Police personnel and opened the floor for the President.
In his address to those four digit numbers of service personnel and Policemen, the President insisted the significance of raising the standards of the services and the Police to match with international standards through enhanced professionalism and training.
He also underlined the need for everyone to maintain the hard-earned peace for the country’s prosperity and assured that the government would do all possible to sustain the status-quo.
The President told the gathering that he would do everything possible to make the Sri Lankan Armed Forces one of the best in the world in future.
Towards the end of the formal troop address, a group of 200 Army, Navy, Air Force and Police personnel sat together with their Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces for lunch. During the same time, HE the President moved freely and shared a few thoughts with some of the servicemen and Police personnel present there.
SFHQ-J added memories to the President’s visit to the SFHQ-J by presenting him with a special memento. Major General Mahesh Senanayake, Commander, SF-J made the symbolic gesture.
Before his departure from the SFHQ-J premises, he left his signature in the Visitors' Book at the SFHQ-J.
President Sirisena also took part in a number of other state programmes in the peninsula during the course of the day.