- Requests Government to consider health and safety of citizens.
- Asks what regulations will be imposed on visitors entering the country.
- Calls on Government to be transparent in their plans to promote economic recovery
The United National Party (UNP) said yesterday it is concerned about the Government’s decision to open the borders to tourists in the New Year. The recent days have seen an increase in the number of cases reported throughout Europe, with many countries choosing to re-impose lockdowns in the lead-up to the New Year.
Former UNP Provincial Councillor Kithsiri Manchanayake told the media that the party was asking the government to be more transparent in their plans to re-open the country. “We do not oppose measures that will help recover our economy, but we ask that the Government clearly presents what their plans are.”
He added that Sri Lanka was currently seeing an increase in the spread of COVID-19 cases in the country, “as a country we have undergone many hardships due to the outbreak of the virus. We ask that the Government does not act hastily which will only see the country threatened with yet another outbreak of the virus.”
The UNP has continually called on the Government to present their plans regarding the usage of a vaccine to combat the COVID-19 virus. Countries around the world have purchased the vaccination and are administering them to their patients. The Health Minister has refused to present any plan for purchasing a vaccine, simply stating that they will await World Health Organisation (WHO) approval.
Manchanayake questioned the Government on what regulations will be in place to ensure that the new arrivals in the country would not infect the public. “Will visitors be expected to have been given the vaccine before they arrive? Will they undergo the mandatory 2-week quarantine period before being allowed to travel around the country? Will visitors be restricted to only certain areas in the country? These are questions that the Government must answer before they take such a decision.”
Drawing attention to the fact that both Netherlands and Belgium have banned flights from the UK, the UNP asks the Government on whether or not visitors from countries undergoing partial lockdowns will be allowed to travel to Sri Lanka.