ECONOMYNEXT – If the epidemic situation in Sri Lanka calls for it, the country might have to go into lockdown, State Minister Dr Sudarshini Ferandopulle said.
“Lockdown decisions are never political. They’re taken based on epidemiologic findings,” the State Minister of Primary Health Care, Epidemics and COVID Disease Control told reporters today.
“We cannot agree to a lockdown unless there is an express scientific need for it,” she added.
At the Grama Niladhari level, Fernandopulle said, the authority to impose lockdown or isolate the area is with the Regional Director of Health Services who must consult the relevant government agent. The decision must then be communicated to the Director General of Health Services, after which the locality can be locked down, she said.
“We shall see how it goes. We might have to lock down the country if there is a need for it,” Fernadopulle said.
Calls for a total lockdown or at least tightened movement restrictions have increased over the past week as daily COVID-19 cases in Sri Lanka have neared 2,000.
As of this morning, Sri Lanka has isolated over 100 Grama Niladhari divisions in 45 police areas and six complete police areas where a high incidence of cases have been recorded.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa said at an event this morning that Sri Lanka cannot afford to go into a full lockdown.
“While fighting the virus, we must also think about the economic situation of the people,” he said. (Colombo/May07/2021)