Fuel shortages; Schools closed in Sri Lanka, government employees not to attend work | Fuel shortages; Schools closed in Sri Lanka

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Colombo: Schools have been closed in Sri Lanka amid continuing fuel shortages amid a financial crisis. The Ministry of Public Administration has also ordered that government employees not attend work except on essential services. Government officials were asked not to come to work because they could not drive vehicles due to lack of diesel.

Thousands have been queuing for fuel for days. The country is in debt without paying for recently imported fuel and cooking gas. Protesters have blocked all major roads demanding fuel.

For the first time in the history of Sri Lanka, the repayment of foreign debt was suspended yesterday. Wednesday was the last day to repay $ 7.8 billion in interest on two foreign loans. In 1999, for the first time since Pakistan, an Asian country stopped paying off foreign debt. The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) has said that the failure to repay the loans was “technical” in the face of the fact that it could not be repaid without restructuring. The central bank said it would not be able to repay any debt for the next six months and warned that inflation could rise to 40 per cent.

Nine ministers took office

Nine ministers have been sworn in in the new government for political stability. The ministers took office a week after President Gotabhaya Rajapaksa appointed Ranil Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister. Vikram Singh came to power after the resignation of Gotabhaya’s brother and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Members of the cabinet include members of the main opposition Samagi Jana Balavegaya and Rajapaksa’s Sri Lanka Pothujana Peramuna party. Parties who had earlier resigned from the Mahinda government were also represented in the cabinet. Last week, the president appointed four ministers. No decision has been taken in the case of the finance minister.

Read Also  Sri Lanka has severe crisis. Schools are closed. Asking civil servants to work from home to save fuel - Post Today Around the World

The decision was made to include 25 members in the cabinet, including the president and prime minister. Former minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, independent MPs Sushil Premajayantha, Vijayadasa Rajapaksa and Tiran Allis were sworn in. Nimal Siripalak was given the port department, Naval was given aviation service and Sushil was given education. Keheliya Rambukwella is the Minister of Health. Vijayadasa Rajapaksa will also be in charge of the law, prisons and constitutional reform departments.

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