Written by Tharushan Fernando
27 Nov, 2015 | 10:19 pm
Today is the fifth day of the second reading of the budget. Opposition Leader, R. Sampanthan opened the floor of the debate stating that this is a totally new situation which has never existed ever before. And that it gives the UNP and SLFP as constituent parties and alliance partners in government and opportunity to address all issues whether economic , political or social, on the basis of a consensus that would be in the best interest of the country as a whole and all its peoples.
He further stated:
The gravity of the country’s predicament can be better appreciated not merely from an awareness of the financial loss suffered – Rupees 158 billion – but it is a very large sum of money. But the equivalent practical loss caused to the people of this country in regard to matters vital to them, that is transport higher education, health and housing.
Leader of the House, Lakshman Kiriella stated:
This budget is one that will attract investments, and from 2009 to 2015, foreign direct investments to the country dropped. The reasons for that was despite there being peace in the country, there was no sense of good governance
UPFA MP, Ramesh Pathirana raised a question stating:
This is page 29 of the Central Bank report for October 2015 and F.D.I’s for the first two quarters of the year have dropped by 40 percent. So, how can you say that is was an increase?
The Leader of the House, in reply, stated:
The results of last year are released this year and you were in power the previous year, do you not understand this?
We proposed the name of MP Sunil Handunnetti to chair the Committee On Public Enterprises. We proposed the name of Bandula Gunawardena for the Public Accounts Committee but he did not accept it and we actually want to create a transformation. So I invite the remaining MPs from the Sri Lanka Freedom Party to join with us and I extend this invitiation to MP Ramesh Pathirana as well.
Minister of Tourism Development and Christian Religious Affairs, John Amaratunga stated:
Prices of a number essential food items were reduced whereas earlier you couldn’t even afford medicine.
He also stated:
These funds are allocated to make way for their provisions, so be patient. This is simply the start and do not panic please.
He further questioned:
Can you perform test at a dispensary?They give you a chit which says to do the test somewhere else and this program is done to put a stop to that because people who could afford, visit the private clinics for their tests. This is mainly aimed at the poor who are in the districts that you represent.
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