The government says the Commissioner General of Essential Services has necessary powers to advise District and Divisional Secretaries.
The Department of Government Information issued a clarification in response to certain claims made by the opposition in Parliament yesterday.
The Secretary to the President, PB Jayasundera said according to Article 5 of the Public Security Ordinance, the Commissioner General of Essential Services has been vested with powers to advise District and Divisional Secretaries and other relevant officials.
The President last week issued a Proclamation invoking articles under the Essential Public Services Act, No. 61 of 1979.
The President issued the Proclamation considering a scarcity of paddy, rice and sugar in the market and to prevent persons from hoarding such items to create an artificial shortage.
Accordingly, under Article 9 of the Emergency (Essential Food Supply) Regulations, the President also appointed a Commissioner General of Essential Services to coordinate and ensure an uninterrupted supply of essential food items.