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Sri Lanka opposition leader blames crises on 20th amendment; faults Justice Minister

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka opposition leader Sajith Premadasa on Wednesday (04) blamed Finance Minister Ali Sabry for his role as then Justice Minister in passing the 20th amendment in 2020 which controversially restored a number of executive powers of the president, which Premadasa claimed contributed to the economic and political crises Sri Lanka is now facing.

“The 20th amendment that you brought created a one-man show establishing a dictatorship., Science was ignored for myth and farmers, fishermen, labourers, small and medium enterprises, lower, middle and upper classes, urban dwellers, self employed, and daily wage earners were all ruinedas a result,” Premadasa said speaking in parliament.

The opposition leader spoke after a speech by Sabry in which the latter acknowledged “mistakes” made by the government of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, particularly with regard to ill-advised tax cuts, not engaging the International Monetary Fund (IMF) sooner and not restructuring debt.

Premadasa said Sabry’s belated mea culpa was pointless, and that the government must at least now call it a day.

“Those responsible for this must definitely go home. The president, the prime minister and the government must go home,” he said.

Sri Lanka is going through the worst economic crisis in the country’s history, leading to unprecedented protests islandwide demanding the resignation of the government.

“Please, as demanded by the people of this country, resign and give them the opportunity to elect a new government,” said Premadasa. (Colombo/May04/2022)

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