Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe today stressed the need to continue the national government with the participation of the United National Party (UNP) and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) despite the difficulties.
He said this at the foundation-stone-laying-ceremony for the Viyathpura Green Professional City in Pannipitiya last morning.
“Development projects such as this are not being implemented to get political advantage for the UNP or SLFP. It is a difficult task for two political parties to work together. It is the same when it comes to implementing a development project because you will not know where you end up if something goes wrong. However we need to work together for the sake of the country,” the Prime Minister said. “We formed the national government under President Maithripala Sirisena as we saw the need for major development programmes such as this and to provide a better future especially for those in the working class. We could have refrained from doing so but the main parties decided to work together instead. Let us continue to work together and try to solve the problems faced by the country. Let’s work together so that people will praise both parties and then they will choose suitable candidates when we hold elections. The world community has kept a close watch on this alliance and we receive the support from all corners of the world and it has helped us to control the debt issue.”
The Prime Minister said the total debt which the country has to repay within the next three years was Rs.4.2 trillion and stressed the need to build up a competitive market economy if the country was to be debt-free.
“We will have to increase our total revenue and the tax revenue in particular to pay the debts. Sri Lanka will be in a position to do so by at least 2020,” he said and added that the benefits of a competitive market economy should not be limited to a few who own industries.
“We need the market economy and social justice to go hand in hand,”