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Health Ministry fails to deliver Sinopharm to Viharamaha Devi Park

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Army sees attempts to sabotage its vaccination drive

By Rathindra Kuruwita

Thousands of people who arrived at the Viharamaha Devi Park to get vaccinated had been turned away yesterday as the Health Ministry had not delivered Sinopharm vaccine, a spokesman for the Army said.

The officer said that the Epidemiology Unit of the Health Ministry was responsible for distributing the vaccines.

It was the latest in a series of attempts to sabotage the Army’s vaccination drive, the spokesman said.

“From the beginning senior ministry officers and some powerful unions were against the Army being involved in the inoculation process.

The health system was in serious trouble but health officials had not sought the support of the military to help the public,” he said.

Images are being circulated on social media about the state of COVID-19 wards, he said. A number of people are being treated outside.

“We could come in and build temporary shelters to treat the patients. This is not something we have seen before. It’s time we work together to fight the pandemic. This is no time to undermine each other,” he said.



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So far no side effects among Pfizer vaccinated 15,000 A/L students

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By Rathindra Kuruwita

Over 15,000 GCE AL students had been vaccinated with Pfizer and there had not been any side effects, Colombo District Director of Health Dr. Dilip Liyanage told the media yesterday.

He said that the Ministry of Education had given them a list of 20,688 that needed to be vaccinated.

“We would like to assure parents that there is no need to worry. Over 15,000 children have been vaccinated and there have been no problems so far. Trust the health professionals and vaccinate your child at the first opportunity you get,” he said.

Dr. Liyanage added that children who missed their chance to get vaccinated on weekdays, can get vaccinated at the MOH office near their home.

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Govt. approves prohibition of cattle slaughter

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The government has approved the prohibition of cattle slaughter. The decision was announced at the weekly Cabinet meeting at the Information Department yesterday (19). The government said the relevant laws and regulations, including those passed by Local Government authorities would be amended for that purpse.

The Legal Draftsman has drafted Bills to amend the following acts and ordinances.

• Authority 272 of the Cattle Slaughter Ordinance No. 9 of 1893

• Act No. 29 of 1958 Concerning Animals

• Municipal Councils Ordinance – Section 252

• Section 255 of the Municipal Councils Ordinance

• Ordinance No. 15 of the Urban Council Act of 1987

The Attorney General has certified that the said Bills do not clash with the provisions of the Constitution.

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CHR condemns intimidation of striking teachers

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The Centre for Human Rights (CHR) yesterday condemned the continuous threats against striking teachers and principals by government politicians. During the various phases of the strike, the government had tried to mobilise mobs, often pretending to be parents, to intimidate the strikers.

CHR Executive Director Surangi Ariyawansha said that those threats violate the provisions of the Constitution. Commenting on media revelations that mobs,backed by Ministers, have been calling principals and teachers, to force them to come to school on October 21, she said that such actions had set a dangerous precedent.

“Principals and teachers boycotted online teaching for close to 100 days demanding the resolution of a long standing salary issue. The government initially attempted to quell union action by using quarantine regulations. Later these tactics have devolved into direct intimidation,” she said. (RK)

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