On February 4th, 2012, the High Commission of Sri Lanka in Singapore celebrated the 64th Anniversary of Independence of Sri Lanka at The High Commissioners official residence.
The celebrations took place in the morning for the Sri Lankan expatriate community living in Singapore which consisted of various professionals, representatives of the business sector as well as scholars and members of the clergy.
All invitees were welcomed at the entrance by Sri Lankan children in their respective traditional greetings unique to each ethnicity and religion, symbolizing unity and harmony amongst Sri Lanka’s multi religious society. The event also included a multi-religious ceremony with the participation of the clergy of all four religions practiced in Sri Lanka.
Delivering a speech on the occasion, High Commissioner Ferial Ismail Ashraff welcomed the guests in all three languages. She highlighted the positive results of the re-development policies of His Excellency President Mahinda Rajapaksa, stating that “After the successful elimination of terrorism of three long decades, our nation is now moving towards social and economic development that will benefit the whole country. The government of Sri Lanka under the able leadership of our president His Excellency Mahinda Rajapakse has been able to create an environment of equal opportunities to its people – which was not available during the last three decades. Sri Lanka is proud to have ended terrorism, rehabilitated and reintegrated those misguided, reconstructed infrastructure and rebuilt lives within the last two years.’’
In her concluding remarks, High Commissioner Ferial Ismail Ashraff recognized the task at hand for Sri Lankans. She stated that “Protecting the freedom regained remains to be the new challenge of the hour. It is imperative to remember at all times that the true strength of the nation would be judged not by the challenges it faces but by its responses and hence it would be important to be patient and be focused on our responses to all new challenges. In this, I appeal to all of you, living outside the shores of Sri Lanka, to engage more in the activities and steps taken by the government of Sri Lanka to bring back sustainable peace and harmony to our motherland.’’
The guests enjoyed traditional Sri Lankan food, sweet meats and Ceylon tea at the reception held after the event.