Now, Jt. Opp. warns of hybrid health service


By Harischandra Gunaratna

Colombo District UPFA Parliamentarian and former Minister Bandula Gunawardena yesterday said the government was bent on introducing a hybrid health service in the country with India holding the whip hand.

Addressing a joint opposition meeting at the Dr. N.M. Perera Centre at Borella, he said Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, was the main architect of the scheme and it was a prelude to the controversial Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ECTA).

The government had destroyed and degraded the credibility earned by the country’s health service , which was the best in South Asia a few years ago, he said.

Gunawardena condemned the government’s plan to introduce an ambulance service in Sri Lanka with an Indian NGO called GBK Emergency Management and Research Institute under which 88 ambulences and 600 Indian personnel would be employed here initially in the Western and Southern Provinces.

"Already an MoU had been signed to this effect and the Indian NGO is allowed to operate with a free hand where it would not be governed by our labour laws," he said.

The former UPFA Minister said, when questioned about the deal , the Prime Minister’s answer was that all local companies were manned by rogues.

Gunawardena asked whether Wickremesinghe considers Birlas and Tatas saints.

The former Minister flayed the Indian government for trying to falsely implicate the Sri Lankan doctors in a kidney transplant racket so that that the Indian doctors could have the monopoly in conducting kidney transplants in the region and added that it was a carefully orchestrated move to undermine the country’s health service.

He said the government had deliberately not passed the benefit of reduction of oil prices in the world market and the saving Sri Lanka made in 2015 was USD 2.5 billion

Former External Affairs Minister G.L.Peiris said ECTA was one way that the government was repaying its debt to India in helping the Wickremesinghe- Sirisena government to come to power and the MoU with the Indian NGO was part of it where the Indian government is helped by our government to ease its unemployment problem.

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