The Samagi Jana Balawegaya has questioned the government over how it plans to protect tourists from the coronavirus when the government cannot protect its citizens from the virus.
Speaking during a media briefing in Colombo today, Parliamentarian Kabir Hashim raised concerns over a statement by Minister of Tourism Prasanna Ranatunga that travel restrictions and quarantine curfew is not valid for visiting tourists.
MP Hashim said Sri Lanka has lost trust before the international community.
The Parliamentarian said hotels in Maldives have been filled to capacity as their vaccination drive is 85 percent complete adding that the Maldivian government invested in vaccinations from the inception.
MP Hashim said tourists are travelling to the Maldives without any incentives adding people thinking straight will not visit Sri Lanka.
The Parliamentarian said Sri Lanka is ranked fourth in the world in coronavirus fatalities.
He said the government must first get its affairs together, in order to resolve the country’s issues.
Commenting on the economy and the rising cost of living, MP Hashim said the public is further oppressed while the government continues to provide tax relief to its allies.
The Parliamentarian said the present administration reduced the annual interest rate of pensioners to 5.5 percent claiming interest rates must be slashed.
He said the country’s inflation is at 7 percent which results in a negative interest rate for pensioners.
MP Hashim charged commercial banks of providing large companies low interest rates of 6.5 percent adding that interest rates provided to small scale businesses are 15 percent.
He said there was an excess in paddy last year adding the government introduced a control price in order to ensure rice is sold at a reasonable price.
The MP however said vendors are selling rice over the government’s stipulated control price.