Finance Minister fully responsible for public suffering – Udaya

Udaya Prabhath Gammanpila

Parliamentarian Udaya Gammanpila says Minister of Finance Basil Rajapaksa must take complete responsibility for the public suffering having to stand in queues.

Speaking during a media briefing in Colombo today, MP Gammanpila said a majority of the public is in queues to obtain gas, fuel, and medicine due to the mistakes of the Finance Minister.

MP Gammanpila noted last year Sri Lanka spent USD 20.6 billion to import goods, adding that only USD 4.6 billion was spent on importing medicine, medical equipment, fuel, gas, and coal.

He added nearly USD 6 billion was spent on importing non-essential goods.

The MP claimed if any individual dies due to a shortage of medicine for cancer or heart illnesses Minister Basil Rajapaksa must take responsibility for their deaths.

He charged the Finance Minister of deliberately taking action to weaken the economy.

Joining the media briefing, Minister Vasudeva Nanayakkara claimed the government violated the agreement reached when passing the 20th Amendment to the Constitution, that no dual citizenship holder will be granted a Parliamentary seat.

Minister Nanayakkara claimed while he is technically still a Minister he distanced himself from his Ministerial duties apart from when his signature is required for approvals.

He added he does not attend Cabinet meetings.

Minister Nanayakkara said when agreeing to the 20th Constitutional Amendment they did not agree to allowing any individual with foreign citizenship to enter Parliament or to hold a Ministerial portfolio.

He said lengthy discussions were held with the President in this regard and they informed the President they will not vote in favour of the 20th Amendment based on the matter.

He said the President assured he only wanted to pass the 20th Amendment to reverse restrictions imposed on him regarding his citizenship and it was not to bring Minister Basil Rajapaksa or any other individual to Parliament.

Minister Nanayakkara said however after several days the President took steps to allow Minister Basil Rajapaksa to enter Parliament.

(Source: News Radio)