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SJB blames delay in covid vaccine supplies on govt. antagonising India

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By Saman Indrajith

Chief Opposition Whip and Kandy District SJB MP Lakshman Kiriella, on Wednesday, told Parliament that if the incumbent government had not antagonised India by allowing China to consolidate its power here, there would not have been delays in obtaining Indian Covid vaccines.

Participating in an adjournment debate on the prevailing pandemic situation in the country, MP Kiriella said that the government had created problems with neighbouring India without giving thought to the possible repercussions. The government had allowed China to expand its power base here. That action upset India and her concerns. India has problems with China, Nepal and Pakistan, but did not have problems with us. Now, this government paved the way for that. If we had been on good terms with India, we could have obtained the vaccine easily. Now we have missed that chance.

“The government is asking for our support. We are ready to support the government to implement health related policies and decisions but not going to support them in implementing their political plans. The government is now in a difficult position. That is why it is asking for our support. If they go for a lockdown there would be an economic disaster. If they do not go for a lockdown, then there would be a health disaster. What do we want to choose – the health disaster or the economic disaster?

“Before extending our support to the government we must bring to its notice the way it treats the Opposition MPs. The government has arrested MP Rishad Bathiudeen. He is being used as a crowbar to be thrown out of the house whenever there is lightning. Whenever the government is in a tight spot, it gets Bathiudeen arrested. This time the government could not face the public opposition for its failure to arrest the mastermind of the Easter Sunday attacks. When pressure mounted, the government arrested Bathiudeen. Our MPs are harassed. You have appointed committees to deprive our leaders of their civic rights. Now, you are asking for our support. I like to tell the government if you are serious about securing our support then you should do it nicely and properly as a responsible government. When the government had 148 seats in parliament, it thought that it was all powerful and it could do anything. Now, it cannot do without out support.”



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Employees’ Trust Fund Act No. 46 of 1980 to be amended

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The Cabinet of Ministers approved the proposal presented by the Hon. President in his capacity as the Minister of Finance, Economic Stabilization and National Policies to instruct the legal draftsman to prepare a bill to amend the Employees’ Trust Provident Fund Act No. 46 of 1980 enabling to provide health insurance similar to Agrahara health insurance to private sector employees.

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Cabinet nod for MOU between the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Republic of Maldives on Cultural Cooperation

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The Cabinet of Ministers approved the proposal presented by the Minister of Buddha Sasana, Religious and Cultural affairs to sign a cultural cooperation agreement between the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Maldives. (The draft agreement has received the clearance of the Attorney General and the approval of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs).

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Outgoing Bulgarian Ambassador calls on the President

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(pic PMD)

Mrs. Eleonora Dimitrova, Bulgaria’s Ambassador to Sri Lanka, met President Ranil Wickremesinghe at the Presidential Secretariat on Monday (06), before departing for her home country upon completing her tenure in Sri Lanka.

 

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