Minister Johnston Fernando says that the government has decided to extend the islandwide travel restrictions currently in effect, until the 07th of June.
However, he said that the travel restrictions will be temporarily relaxed tomorrow (May 25), May 31 (Monday) and June 04 (Friday) for the people to purchase essential items from the nearest shop to their homes.
However, the public will not be allowed to travel by vehicle to purchase essential goods as they will only be allowed to walk to nearest shop.
Only grocery shops, pharmacies, bakeries, fish and meat shops are permitted to open tomorrow while liquor stores will remain closed.
Army Commander General Shavendra Silva said a meeting presided by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa was held this afternoon in regard to the recommendations made by various specialists in the medical field pertaining to COVID-19 and how the country should proceed during this period.
He stated that during that meeting certain decisions were made and accordingly this briefing was summoned to announce the said decisions.
Clarifying further on this, the Army Chief said that the travel restrictions enforced since 11.00 p.m. last Friday (May 21) will be “eased to some extent, but not completely removed” at 4.00 a.m. tomorrow (25).
The travel restrictions will be enforced across the island once again from 11.00 p.m. tomorrow (25) until 4.00 a.m. the next Monday (May 31).
Thereafter travel restrictions will once again be enforced with effect from 11.00 p.m. on May 31 and will continue until 4.00 a.m. on June 04 (Friday).
Travel restrictions will come into effect again at 11.00 p.m. that same day (June 04) and will continue until 4.00 a.m. on June 07 (Monday).
“The government of Sri Lanka has decided to have these travel restrictions in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Sri Lanka,” he said.
He said that considering the present situation, the President and the government has decided to enforce these travel restrictions while considering the fact that the majority of the people require to purchase food items and medicine.
He said that a time period of about 17 hours will be given for this purpose on May 25, May 31 and June 04.
Police Spokesman DIG Rohana emphasized that only one member from a family will be permitted to go out to purchase essential items from any outlet within walking distance as traveling by vehicle will not be allowed.
This was announced during a special press briefing at the Government Information Department attended by Ministers Johnston Fernando, Prasanna Ranatunga, Army Commander General Shavendra Silva and Police Spokesman DIG Ajith Rohana.
The press conference was held to brief the public on the current Covid-19 situation in the country and the maintaining of essential services.