ASIA/SRI LANKA - Cardinal Ranjith: international aid is urgently needed for the country, especially in health care

Saturday, 9 July 2022 economy   poverty   humanitarian aid   politics  

Colombo (Agenzia Fides) - Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, Archbishop of Colombo appealed to the international community to assist in providing Sri Lanka with medicines and equipment for hospitals amid its economic crisis and in recent days invoked once again also the help of the Holy See.
"We need to support the children’s hospital in Borella and the cancer hospital in Maharagama, especially for medicines and equipment", said the Cardinal, touching on the issue of corruption: "There will be investigations in the future into the disappearance of the national gold reserves: people have a right to know how they have squandered the country's wealth". Due to poor management of the economy, essential goods are scarce in Sri Lanka, which is experiencing its worst economic crisis since 1948. "Doctors working in hospitals find it difficult to come to hospitals on time due to the fuel crisis. We are with the people in their grief", the Cardinal noted. Due to the disruption in the distribution of fuel across the country, the government closed schools from June 27 to July 1 and other closures regarding universities, government agencies and private institutions are expected due to the lack of fuel. Transport and distribution of vegetables to wholesale markets could also collapse.
According to the government, it was not possible to announce the arrival dates of the ships carrying fuel for banking and logistical reasons.
In the midst of the crisis, the Church does not forget the case of the Easter attacks three years ago: Cardinal Ranjith filed a written petition at the Court of Appeal asking for an order ordering the government to implement the recommendations contained in the Final Report of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into the 2019 Easter Sunday Attacks. That report calls for investigations of gross negligence and errors by numerous public officials, including officials serving in the Sri Lankan police, and advocates disciplinary sanctions, as well as the withdrawal of passports so that suspects do not flee abroad. (SD/PA) (Agenzia Fides, 9/7/2022)