Monday, January 24, 2005

Coir Products Manufacturers Association

Coir Products Manufacturers Association

We have a good contact (through Mano/Rajan of IRC) a senior Engineer Lakshman. Tillakaratne who works through the coir producers association (Coir – is from coconut and the coastal belt is full of coconut trees). That network of the coir producers association is well positioned to support. Their intentions to resurrect livelihoods with funds to make repairs to equipment and support with low-cost housing is appropriate. They cover quite a span of territory particularly in the Southern coastal belt.

I went to Katunayake Airport via Colombo to meet with Lakshman Tillakaratne - he was gracious enough to meet even though I was late 8.45 pm or so. We chatted a bit – getting to know each other – he is of the view point that the national interest is being lost in many of the post-Tsunami operations – that data is being collected by foreign operatives in Sri Lanka which shall then not be made public - that reconstruction was being organized to profit vested interests – we had discussed earlier by telephone that the Coir Products Manufacturers Association could be useful in resurrecting livelihoods and providing households to those affected. He shall also provide support for the “net to people” – the IT person in his Colombo office is willing to volunteer time for the IRC operations.