Sri Lankan President invites opposition parties to join government to tackle crisis
COLOMBO: Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has invited all political parties in the country to accept ministerial portfolios and work together to find a solution to the national crisis.
In a letter, the President said that the current crisis was the result of several economic and global concerns and that a solution needs to be found within the democratic process of the country. As one of the leading democracies in Asia, it needs to be addressed within the framework of democracy itself, the President’s letter stated, adding that “together we must work together in the national interest for benefit of citizens and future generations.”
Sri Lanka is battling a severe economic crisis with food and fuel scarcity affecting a large number of the people in the island nation. The economy has been in a free-fall since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to a crash in the tourism sector. On Sunday, 26 Sri Lankan Cabinet Ministers resigned en masse from their positions amid rising public anger against the government over the economic crisis.
All 26 of them signed a general letter, consenting to resign paving the way for a new Cabinet to be formed, the English language newspaper Daily Mirror reported.
Mahinda Rajapaksa will continue to be in the office and all other members of the Cabinet have tendered their resignations to the PM, News Wire reported.
Meanwhile, a 36-hour long curfew that was imposed on Sri Lanka on Saturday evening at 6 pm was lifted on Monday morning at 6 am but the country is still under a state of emergency.
The country’s government on Saturday blocked access to social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp and YouTube, but lifted the ban on Sunday afternoon after the PM’s son Namal Rajapaksa spoke against it.
Earlier on Saturday, India delivered 40,000 MT of diesel to Sri Lanka to help ease the power crisis in the island country. As part of the US 500 million oil line of credit (LoC) extended by India to Sri Lanka, this was the fourth consignment of fuel delivered to Colombo.
Further, India has supplied around 200,000 MT of fuel to the island nation over the last 50 days. (ANI)