Private security entities an integral part of Sri Lanka’s national security apparatus: Defence Secy
The private security industry is an emerging industry and the support given by the Industry is immense as they are contributing to national security, said Sri Lanka’s Defence Secretary Gen. (Retd) Kamal Gunaratne.
“Besides contributing to the economy and creating job opportunities for citizens; most importantly for personnel who used to serve in the Armed Services of Sri Lanka, the private security companies are contributing a greater share in ensuring the national security of the country which has evolved into a wider spectrum of security needs in the recent past”, he stated.
The Defence Secretary made these observations while addressing Sri Lanka Security Service Providers Association’s Annual General Meeting – 2021 as the Chief Guest.
He also said “holding the responsibility of ensuring the national security as the Secretary Defence, it is my strong belief that the members of the private security entities of almost 150,000 have become an integral part of it, as stakeholders in the national security apparatus in Sri Lanka”.
Referring to the President’s Election Manifesto, he said that it has given the lion’s share to national security. He said the Secretary of Defence is responsible for national security whether it fails or succeeds, adding that the command, authority, responsibility and accountability relating to national security also lie on his shoulders.
Further speaking to pioneers in Sri Lankan private security services, he said it is an emerging industry which shows development across the country despite the current economic crisis experienced due to COVID-19 pandemic.
This development is driven by diverse factors including the increased pressure for risk mitigation by businesses and corporate entities, he reasoned.
Illustrating the numerous challenges faced by this industry, such as adequate knowledge of multitasking and technology to perform security and safety functions, he stressed “the development of skills becomes a crucial factor where investment in human capital becomes vital in preparing it to take on greater responsibilities”.
Citing the poor benefits, lack of compensation packages, absence of proper insurance policies and career development avenues for employees as the main causes that have led to weaken the industry, Gen. Gunaratne opined their managements to dispose appropriate measures to curtail such lapses in order to uphold the quality of their services.
The Defence Secretary also highlighted the crucial need of shifting to sophisticated technology, specialised security academies and training in order to meet the advancement of technology and growing security threats.
“In support of all the Security Service Providers’ entities in Sri Lanka and to enhance their coordination with the government, the Defence Ministry as the line Ministry and the State Ministry of National Security and Disaster Management under my purview have set certain parameters to regulate the process of registering the Private Security Agencies and expect that all agencies adhere with these regulations to maintain harmony and sustainability of this industry”, he said affirming a web based registration system that would be introduced from year 2022.
President of the Sri Lanka Security Service Providers’ Association (SLASSPA), Office Bearers along with members of SLASSPA along with and distinguished invitees were present at the event held adhering to healthcare guidelines.