Cause for the sudden rise of covid-19 cases in Sri Lanka is the government’s mismanagement in controlling the pandemic and the unscientific decision made by the authorities, Dr. Prasanna Cooray said.
Speaking to Medialk, International Health Consultant and a Regional Epidemiologist, Dr. Cooray said the government’s responsibility is to take the right decisions at the right time but GoSL and its authorities have failed in doing so.
“The key position in this fight to contain and fight the virus is held by an Army Official. What message does this give to society? This whole situation is bound with people’s social and medical statures. The government is acting with no respect towards the citizens of this country.” Dr. Prasanna Cooray said.
He also emphasized that media outlets also have a huge responsibility in this regard but there seems to be a huge racial discrimination in their reporting.
Whom do you think is the most responsible for this sudden raise in positive cases to the virus? The Government or the Public?
There were several times in the recent past where the government put all the blame on people. I remember the Minister of Health Pavithra Wanniarachchi saying that they had done everything possible and then it’s on the shoulders of the public to take necessary measures. As professionals and experts in the matter, we have suggested and recommended many procedures to implement in order to contain the virus and I believe that our voices have fallen on deaf ears.
Everyone has a role to play, everyone has a responsibility under these circumstances. The first thing is the individual responsibility, which is to stay at home. But as we can see it is not practical at all the time but still people need to avoid going out as much as possible.
Government’s decisions are like Soda cans
Private Sector of the country is miles ahead than the public sector when it comes to adapting to the ongoing situation. The private sector has allowed and provided necessary facilities for most of the employees to work from home, which ultimately helps to control this pandemic. I said these things about a year ago when the Covid-19 pandemic broke out. If a country is governed by leaders of good knowledge and understanding, there should have made arrangements to operate the state-run institutes with a proportion of public employees working from home. No steps were taken to implement such procedures. Their methods are like opened soda cans. Everything prevails for only a short period of time. All the strategies the government adapted were very short lived. They do not address the issue in a proper way but implement solutions just for the situation.
Public events during a pandemic: Practical jokes by the Government
The other thing is maintaining the distance. We do not even have to talk about it, this whole idea is a practical joke by the government. During all these times, the government never set an example to the public by action. How many public events were held by the government last year and even this year with no absolute social distancing?
Last year, in New Zealand, which is one of the countries known for handling this pandemic most efficiently, the Deputy Health Minister was dropped from her position for not maintaining social distance. That is a fine example for leading the people in the right course with exemplary actions.
What is the government’s responsibility?