The Committee on Public Accounts (COPA) Chair Hon. Lasantha Alagiyawanna instructed the Department of Probation and Child Care Services to identify the problems related to children at the local level, district level, provincial level and national level and prepare a solution for them.
State Minister Hon. Lasantha Alagiyawanna gave this instruction when COPA met (04) under his Chairmanship to examine the Auditor General's report and current performance of the Department of Probation and Child Care Services for the years 2019/2020/2021. Speaking further, Hon. Lasantha Alagiyawanna said that it is necessary to maintain a data system to identify children who do not attend school. As a result, he pointed out that a system should be developed to get information by the school at least once a month or every once in two months.
Moreover, the state minister also stated that it is necessary to prepare a program in this regard with the Ministry of Education. Furthermore, the COPA Chair pointed out that it is important to quickly find out about children who do not come to school.
Attention was also drawn to the non-utilization of the UNCRC data system provided to this department in the year 2018 for the need to submit timely and accurate reports to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child in relation to the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child at a cost of 2350000 rupees. Officials present said that there are some practical concerns pertaining to this data system. Thus, the Chair instructed to make arrangements for the implementation of this data system as soon as possible.
The Committee on Public Accounts also inquired from the officials present about the updating of
the ordinances and COPA advised to give a date-bound report on the said by August 08 th .
It was also disclosed that this department does not have an audit committee. Therefore, by the 25 th of this month, the COPA Chair gave instructions to establish the committee and inform COPA about its composition.
Furthermore, there was a discussion about the vacancy of the post of Legal Officer and the appointment of an officer for the same.
It was also discussed how to protect children's rights when it comes to media reporting of incidents involving children and how to work for the future welfare of the child, steps to be taken to prevent abuse of children on the Internet and delay in hearing complaints received regarding children.
State Ministers Hon. (Dr.) Suren Raghavan, Hon. (Ms.) Diana Gamage, Members of Parliament Hon. (Dr.) Major Pradeep Undugoda, Hon. (Dr.) (Ms.) Harini Amarasuriya were present at this Committee meeting held.