Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe warned that the country's deep economic woes could worsen further if a solution to end its current political crisis isn’t found “urgently.”
Speaking to reporters in Colombo today (11), Dr. Weerasinghe said he had taken the job in April with expectations that political stability would be established within two weeks. However, little has been achieved in the last month, he said, adding that he would not remain as the Governor if political stability is not achieved.
Nandalal Weerasinghe’s comments follow the resignation of Mahinda Rajapaksa as prime minister and the dissolution of the cabinet. President Gotabaya Rajapaksa is currently without a finance minister as the country, on the brink of bankruptcy, looks to the International Monetary Fund for help.
No PM or Cabinet for 48 hours!
It has been 48 hours since Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned amid mass protests at the government's handling of a deepening economic crisis. However, political authorities have so far failed to appoint a new Prime Minister or Cabinet of Ministers.
A special Party Leaders' meeting to discuss the current situation of the country will be held virtually via Zoom at 3.00pm today (11), Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena said.
The meeting had been scheduled to be held in Parliament physically but the Speaker said last night that it had been cancelled owing to safety concerns of MPs.
Weeks of overwhelmingly peaceful demonstrations against Sri Lanka's crippling economic crisis boiled over on Monday (09), with at least nine people killed and furious mobs torching the homes of government lawmakers.
The island-wide curfew imposed with effect from 7.00 p.m. on May 09 has been extended to 7.00 a.m. on Wednesday (May 11).
IMF to continue talks with Sri Lanka
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said technical level discussions between its officials and Sri Lankan authorities will continue in order to be ready for talks once a new government is formed though it is concerned about the “rising social tensions and unrest.”
The IMF is closely following developments in Sri Lanka and “concerned about rising social tensions and violence,” Masahiro Nozaki, the fund’s mission chief for the country, said in a statement.
“Technical level” discussions between IMF officials and Sri Lanka authorities have started, and will continue in order to be ready for policy discussions once a new Sri Lanka government is formed, Nozaki said.
“On our virtual mission during May 9-23, discussions at the technical level have just started and continue as planned so as to be fully prepared for policy discussions once a new government has been formed,” the IMF mission chief added.