August 15, 2022
Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe at the house burnt down by the protesters

Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe at the house burnt down by the protesters

Wickremesinghe said that demanding him to go home is just a waste of time.

Colombo:

Referring to threats from protesters, Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe on Sunday said there was no point in demanding that they “go home” as they have no home to go to.

Speaking in Kandy, a city in Sri Lanka, Wickremesinghe said that some people have threatened to protest, demanding that he go home, Colombo Gazette reported.

In response, Wickremesinghe said, “I am appealing to you not to do this because I have no house to go to.”

Wickremesinghe said that demanding him to go home is just a waste of time, instead the protesters should try to rebuild his burnt house.

“There is no point in asking a person who does not have a house to go home,” he said, adding that after his house is rebuilt, the protesters may demand that he go home.

The president said the protesters should either rebuild the country or rebuild their home, the Colombo Gazette reported.

He highlighted that the unrest has delayed a possible deal with the International Monetary Fund to help the bankrupt nation out of its economic woes and urged political parties to address the issues facing Sri Lanka. Work together to find a permanent solution.

He further said that there is no point in blaming former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for the economic crisis, but urged all political parties to come together to get the country out of the economic crisis and repay the debt.

Wickremesinghe said the protests had delayed a possible deal with the IMF that was going ahead after he took over as prime minister.

“The instability in the island nation over the past few weeks has stalled talks as agitators stormed the country amid extreme fuel and food shortages,” he said.

The President reiterated that other countries are not willing to provide financial aid to the island nation until an agreement is reached with the IMF. Sri Lanka needs to find ways to repay its debt as the IMF will not fully resolve the issues facing the country.

Notably, on 9 July, protesters from Sri Lanka barged into the private residence of the then Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, angered by the unprecedented economic crisis.

A few hours ago with demands for the resignation of then-President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, they barged into the premises, broke the security cordon set up by the police, took a dip in the swimming pool and went around his kitchen and home.

According to the Daily Mirror report, several journalists were also attacked by security forces, after which more protesters gathered in the area.

Earlier, the police fired tear gas shells at the protesters but despite this they entered their house and set the house on fire.

Following this, Wickremesinghe, who was appointed as prime minister in May, announced his resignation from his post to ensure the continuity of the government and the safety of all citizens.

Following the resignation of the then President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on 21 July, Wickremesinghe was sworn in as the President of Sri Lanka in Parliament before Chief Justice Jayanta Jayasuriya. He was elected as the President in the Parliament elections held on 20 July.

Notably, Sri Lanka is facing its worst economic crisis since gaining independence in 1948, which comes on the heels of successive waves of COVID-19, threatening to undo years of development progress. and severely undermine the country’s ability to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). ,

The protests followed the deteriorating economic situation in the country and there were reports of several confrontations between individuals and members of the police force and the armed forces at fuel stations, where thousands of desperate members of the public queued for hours and sometimes days. fuel shortage.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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