Minister of Power Gamini Lokuge says a majority of employees of the Ceylon Electricity Board did not join the protest staged by several trade unions today.
Speaking during a media briefing in Colombo Minister Lokuge said Chief Secretary of the Ceylon Electricity Board United Trade Union Alliance Ranjan Jayalal informed him a week ago that they will stage a demonstration today.
The Minister said he was informed that there will be no power for 72 hours and the fuel supply will be halted so generators will also not be able to operate.
He added however the government remained silent.
Minister Lokuge said the working class decided they cannot allow the JVP to ruin the country in this manner and therefore today all engineers, technical officers and all other workers of the CEB reported to work.
He noted there was no power shortage, and the CEB has ensured an uninterrupted power supply.
The Minister claimed today Ranjan Jayalal is engaging in a trade union struggle alone.
Meanwhile, Minister Lokuge noted the government was not delighted to increase the prices of fuel, gas and milk powder.
He added there is also a cement shortage in the country.
He said although people are not realizing it the world is facing an economic crisis and due to the increase in the world market the government is taking various steps to face this situation.
On a separate note, Minister Gamini Lokuge claimed the opposition and groups affiliated to the government are attempting to spread false narratives pertaining to the Yugadanavi Power Plant agreement.
He said the JVP and several parties affiliated with the government are attempting to show that the CEB was sold to the American firm, although only 40 percent of the Yugadanavi Power Plant was handed over through the agreement.
The Minister noted the Kerawalapitiya Power Plant does not even add at least five percent to the national grid.
He added this situation arose when thermal power plants were privatised in the 1990s.
Minister Lokuge stressed the opposition must act responsibly adding the country will not develop if they act in an irresponsible manner.