Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena received the newly appointed representative of the World Health Organization (WHO) to Sri Lanka, Dr. Alaka Singh on Friday at the Ministry.
Welcoming Dr. Singh to Sri Lanka, Minister Gunawardena recalled the close cooperation between Sri Lanka and the WHO, being the very first UN agency to be established in Colombo in 1952.
He appreciated the WHO’s assistance to Sri Lanka during the COVID- 19 pandemic, and requested continued support in securing COVID- 19 vaccines to the people of Sri Lanka.
Minister Gunawardena also recalled that Sri Lanka was among the first countries that stood in strong solidarity with the WHO in its efforts towards addressing the COVID- 19 challenges.
While appreciating Sri Lanka’s solidarity with the organization, representative of WHO, Dr. Singh assured the continued collaboration of the WHO in both addressing the COVID–19 pandemic as well as in ensuring the sustainable delivery of other health care services during this period.
She commended Sri Lanka’s excellent health care system producing impressive health care indicators and the country’s standing as an example to other countries in the region.
The representative of WHO to Sri Lanka Dr. Singh assured WHO’s assistance in securing COVID – 19 vaccines to Sri Lanka, and also in the post COVID- 19 recovery phase.
She expressed hope that the availability of vaccines would increase significantly in the 3rd quarter of this year.
Minister Gunawardena said that Sri Lanka looked forward to collaborating with the WHO among other things, to enhance the capacities of the health care system and research facilities in the Sri Lankan universities.