Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa has raised strong criticism over the decision taken by the former Government to hand over the Hambantota Port to China on a 99-year lease.
Speaking at an election rally in Mahiyangana, the Prime Minister accused the former Government of selling off property owned by Sri Lanka to a foreign country.
He also questioned the silence of some then Ministers when the Hambantota agreement was signed.
“They could have objected to the agreement at the time,” he said.
Speaking at a rally in Nugegoda, the Prime Minister said that some people received additional benefits as a result of the Hambantota deal.
“I will not name people. But there was no need to sell the port. The profits are now going to a foreign country,” he said.
Following the signing of an agreement in December 2017 the Hambantota port operations were handed over to Hambantota International Port Group (HIPG) and Hambantota International Port Services (HIPS).
Meanwhile, speaking in Mahiyangana, Rajapaksa further said that it is not easy to withdraw from international agreements.
However, he said that despite any obstacles the current Government is determined to reclaim national resources that were lost to international agreements.
He also said that Sri Lanka has been successful in controlling the spread of COVID-19 due to the initiatives implemented by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
The Prime Minister said that prior to the spread of the virus, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa launched a programme with the support of the Armed Forces and appointed a Presidential Task Force to combat COVID-19.
“We advice the general public to strictly adhere to the health and safety guidelines till this global pandemic is fully under control and eradicated,” he said.
The Prime Minister also request the public to support the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) to gain the two-thirds majority to implement the President’s programme ‘Vision of Prosperity’ for the betterment of the country. (Colombo Gazette)