President Mahinda Rajapaksa has directed the Defence Ministry to expedite the proposed recruitment of 50,000 personnel to the three armed forces to maintain the momentum of military successes in the east.
`Plans are underway to recruit 25,000 troops to the Army, 15,000 to the Navy and 10,000 to the Air Force in the biggest recruitment drive in the history of the country`s security forces,` a senior Defence Ministry official told the Daily Mirror yesterday.
The President had reportedly taken this decision following requests by armed forces commanders who said they needed more personnel to maintain security in newly captured areas in the east and elsewhere.
Since October, last year, government armed forces launched several major military operations to recapture Tiger held areas in the eastern province and succeeded in taking all LTTE strongholds in east except Toppigala.
Meanwhile, a highly placed government official claimed the President had directed his ministers to cut down all unnecessary government expenditure to fund the expansion of the three armed forces.
The President had reportedly asked the ministers not to provide jobs in their ministries or departments under them for at least one year.