LNP – President gets tough on cabinet over gas crisis

Appoints committee to look into incidents
Bandula Gunawardena says incidents may be a result of some manipulation
Police say 19 incidents of LP gas leak explosion within past 2 days
Fear spreads among consumers of Litro Gas

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, on Monday evening, urged his cabinet of ministers to immediately inquire into the incidents of LP gas-related explosions reported from various parts of the country, causing a wave of fear among consumers.

Political sources told Daily Mirror that when the matter was raised at the cabinet meeting, President Rajapaksa had inquired as to why these explosions were occurring, to which Minister Bandula Gunawardena had responded saying this maybe a result of some manipulation. Minister Gunawardena had also informed the President that the matter had been discussed in Parliament.

The President, clearly aware that the matter had rung off serious alarm bells among the consumers, instructed the Cabinet to urgently look into it and yesterday appointed a Committee to look into the reported incidents.

The Committee is advised to find possible causes of the problem in order to provide immediate solutions to the issue while President Rajapaksa has also instructed them to get the information from all the necessary parties and look into existing studies and various views and submit the report to him within two weeks. The police yesterday said that 19 incidents of LP gas-related explosions had been reported across the country within the past two days alone with the public now resorting to use various methods to check if their domestic gas cylinders are safe.

No injuries had been reported from the explosions but police said all the explosions that had taken place involved Litro gas cylinders. Parliament which has also been jolted over the explosions will summon a special consultative committee meeting today on the instructions of Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena to discuss the matter while the appointment of a special select committee is also on the cards. The government has already admitted that there has been an unusual increase in the incidents of gas explosions recently while the public has urged for an urgent solution to the matter before serious harm occurs as a result of the explosions.

Opposition Leader Sajith Premadasa has already called on the government to establish set standards and guidelines by the SLSI for the importation of gas and related accessories in order to make the citizens’ safety a priority.

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