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Covid upsurge: JVP blame govt.’s disregard for expert opinion, Dr. Fernandopulle’s warnings

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JVP politburo member Bimal Ratnayake addressing media yesterday. Former Kalutara District MP Dr Nalinda Jayatissa looks on

 

By Saman Indrajith

The government’s callous disregard for expert opinion was the main reason for the spread the of COVID-19 virus at an alarming speed in the post-New Year period, the JVP said yesterday.

Addressing the media at the party headquarters in Pelawatte, JVP Central Committee member and former MP Dr Nalinda Jayatissa said that the situation would have been different and the country would not have been in the present predicament if the government had listened to the warnings by State Minister of Primary Health Care, Epidemics, and COVID Disease Control Dr Sudarshini Fernandopulle.

“There are four ministers for health. Among them is the State Minister Dr Fernandopulle and the Covid control comes under her purview. She is a specialist doctor. We demand to know under whose instructions her warnings had been disregarded. We are sure that it was not the Army Commander who did that. It should be the President and he should understand that there are things he knows as well as things he does not. If he acts in a manner that he knows everything then the country will have to suffer. If the government had listened to Dr Fernandopulle the present situation would not have been this worse.”

JVP Politburo member and former MP Bimal Ratnayake said the government had closed the stable door after the horse had bolted. “For example, restrictions for the movement are imposed only after the explosive increase of infections.

He warned that the country was likely to face a shortage of medical oxygen. There were only two factories that produced oxygen. They produced 100 tonnes a day. As per the needs of an emergency, the health sector officials alone would need 25 tonnes daily. “The government must act fast without waiting for the last moment. Doctors and medical experts have already warned of a possible oxygen shortage. But still the government does not give two hoots about the possible danger.”

Ratnayake said that the super-rich would not have any problem as they could migrate elsewhere as now seen in India. “Most rich persons have left India for other countries and some have come to Sri Lanka too. The rich owners of Indian factories have left the country. Here too we see that the factories operate without giving any regard to the health of the workers. For example when a Covid-19 infected worker is found, that worker is given leave and is replaced by another to continue the work of that line. There are boarding places with a large number of factory workers. Those are like time-bombs waiting to explode. Yet, the government has no concern about such dangers.”



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(pic PMD)

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