The province is asking Nova Scotians to help recognize provincial public servants who are leading in the delivery of French-language services. Nominations for the fourth annual Bonjour! Awards for Excellence in French-language Services open today, Sept. 19. The awards recognize outstanding contributions by Nova Scotia government employees to develop and deliver programs and services in French. “What better way to promote the availability and accessibility of French-language services than to honour those who are leading the charge within the provincial public service,” said Acadian Affairs Minister David Wilson. “Nova Scotia’s public servants go above and beyond to ensure Acadian and francophone Nova Scotians receive valuable services in their first language — and they deserve to be recognized. “I encourage Nova Scotians to take a few moments to nominate an individual or group who you know is making a difference bringing valuable services in French to your community.” Members of the public and government employees can submit a nomination to Acadian Affairs in three categories: Excellence in Service Delivery to the Public, Excellence in Leadership and Excellence in Program Development. Last year, award recipients were recognized for developing and launching a licence plate celebrating Acadian heritage, for ensuring that Acadians and francophones have access to legal support services in French and for greeting Acadians and francophones in their first language, making it known that French services are available at the office. Nominations will be evaluated by a selection committee that represents the Acadian and francophone community, as well as the provincial and federal public service. To download or submit a nomination form online, go to www.gov.ns.ca/acadian/excellence/. For more information, call 1-800-670-4357 or contact firstname.lastname@example.org . The deadline for nominations is Oct. 31. Successful nominees will be honoured at a ceremony in February. Follow the province’s French-language Twitter account @gouvNE.
The monks forced the police to seal the premises on Friday and issued a deadline for the authorities remove the mosque saying if it is not removed by Monday then they will remove it themselves.In a move seen aimed at defusing the tensions Prime Minister Jayaratna on Sunday ordered that the mosque be relocated to another suitable location. The government today assured it will protect religious freedom in the country after a demand by Buddhists monks to remove a mosque in central Sri Lanka had created controversy.Prime Minister D.M Jayaratna said that while the Sri Lankan constitution calls for the promotion and protection of Buddhism, it does not encourage one to harm the rights of other religions. Monks and protestors had last week converged on a mosque in Dambulla and demanded that it be demolished on the basis that it has been constructed near a Buddhist Temple. “Doing such a thing is not right. As Buddhists we cannot do that. If there is a problem it should be discussed and resolved instead of creating rifts between religions,” the Prime Minister’s media unit quoted him as saying at an event in Kandy. However the decision drew flak from some government Muslim Ministers who insisted that the mosque had every right to operate at the previous location.The monks who protested against the mosque said that it was an illegal construction however the Premier admitted today that it was not and the mosque was at that location for some 10 years.Jayaratna warned that if rifts and clashes occur between various religions in the country that will force the government to react and in turn it will also give the international community a chance to raise allegations against the government similar to the allegations raised after the war with the LTTE. (Colombo Gazette)