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Govt.’s borrowing spree plunging country into a vicious debt cycle

(September 05, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Speaking to the Media yesterday , UNP Gen. Secretary Tissa Attanayake, showed grave concern over the indiscriminate massive short term borrowings of the Govt. at exorbitant interest rates in its desperation to cover up its bankruptcy and debt repayments with no development programs or progress in sight. Already, U.S. $. 230 million has been borrowed by the Govt. and another U.S. $ 70 million is in the pipeline.

In other words, every single individual of this country due to these reckless borrowings is made a debtor to the tune of Rs. 175,000.00 from local and Foreign Banks. These loans, to mention just a few are taken over and above those mentioned and passed in the last Budget. Besides, no mandatory Parliamentary approvals have been obtained in this respect. No country in the World approves this type of borrowing at prohibitive interest rates as they are aware of the frightful consequences. But, the President exploiting the Presidential powers is fast plunging the country and the people into an irretrievable mortgage. This desperate plight of the Govt. has arisen because the Govt. has lost its credibility with Donor and aid granting countries .It is because of this financial bungling and retrograde fiscal policies that the Govt. cannot stop its price and tariff hikes; control inflation which is now at an unprecedented 30 %. The Govt. falsely blames the war while unendingly burdens the masses.

The President is centralizing all the powers to himself by not implementing the 17th amendment. He is deliberately delaying the appointment of the Constitutional Council (CC) under the amendment, because, if he does that he will be bound to appoint the Independent Commissions, namely, the Police Commission, the Elections Commission, Public Service commission and other commissions, whose existence would deprive the President of politicizing and controlling them at his whim and fancy as are being done now, he exhorted.

The President’s inordinate and inferior avarice and desire for selfish self glorification and power centralization is further testified by his making the new elected provincial Councilors to take oaths before him instead of the usual practice of they taking oaths before the Governor of the area, he exclaimed.

The Govt. is also manipulating the State media so much so that they these Institutions have lost their sense of professional ethics and duties publishing only whatever lies the Govt. wants them to. He showed an article in the Lankadeepa (Sinhala medium daily based in Colombo) publishing an absolute falsehood about the UNP, and regretted that this is the first time in the country’s history the Media has been made to descend to this level.

It is a pity that this country has been brought to this abysmal mess in every sphere .In any event the UNP will not stop its relentless campaign against the Govt.’s misdeeds, reckless borrowing and corruption, he emphatically stated.

Answering questions as to whether there are no solutions to the Govt.’s actions, he said, the UNP is in the process of enlisting the support of all parties, civil organizations and societies to make a concerted effort to implement the 17th amendment and rectify the Govt.’s indifference to people’s needs.
- Sri Lanka Guardian

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