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Former Sri Lankan PM casts ‘serious doubt’ on official COVID-19 figures

Ranil Wickremesinghe, Sri Lanka’s former Prime Minister and leader of the United National Party (UNP), has called on the government to “reveal the true impact of the coronavirus spread” as he maintains that there is “serious doubt” on the “accuracy of the COVID-19 figures given by the authorities”.

The Sri Lankan government have claimed that there has been zero community transmission of the virus.

This follows the government's rejections of findings from the University of Jayewardenepura. The university has subsequently withdrawn from conducting PCR tests. Wickremesinghe has stated on the matter that he is “confident in the university’s testing system”.

He further stated:

“The UNP along with many other stakeholders had continued to call on the Health Ministry to increase testing, benchmarking international best practices. Yet, the government claims the current testing facilities are adequate and the university testing facilities are not required”.

Sri Lanka is currently facing a second wave of the coronavirus, with a confirmation of 2,651 cases, reports Economy Next.

Sri Lanka’s College of Medical Laboratory Science (CMLS-SL) has warned against PCR tests being conducted by external research laboratories, including universities, which do not come under the purview of the Ministry of Health. Ravi Kumudesh, CMLS-SL President, has spoken out against it stating that ministry-affiliated diagnostic labs were better suited than university labs.

Read more from Economy Next.

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