Head of the National Operation Centre for the Prevention of COVID-19 and Commander of the Army, General Shavendra Silva appealed to the public to act diligently and not jeopardize the gains made through great sacrifice.
Speaking to the media at the Army Hospital in Narahenpita, where Army officers were being administered the booster dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, the Army Commander urged the public to wear face masks and adhere to all health safety guidelines as there is a risk of new variants emerging.
“Around 18 deaths were reported on Sunday, between 15-25 deaths are reported daily and under such a situation, I expect the public to act diligently to safeguard the gains we have made after immense sacrifices,” he said.
“There are around 14,000 receiving treatment for Covid and with the infections between 500-600 per day, we cannot afford to let our guard down. If we are careless and fail to adhere to the health guidelines, then we run the risk of the cases rising again,” he also said.
The Army Commander said several variants entered the country in the past, despite various measures to prevent it.
General Silva also noted that while inter-provincial travel restrictions were lifted from yesterday, the lifting of travel restrictions does not mean the country has overcome the COVID-19 danger.
He also said that inter-provincial travel restrictions were lifted after several months, and several limitations were eased for the sake of the people.
Therefore, he urged the public to adhere to health regulations and act with the understanding that Covid is still present in the country and poses a great danger.
At the request of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the National vaccination fleet is assisted by the Sri Lanka Army Medical Corps along with the Army personnel as per directions of the Head, National Operation Center for Prevention of COVID-19 Outbreak, Chief of Defence Staff, and Commander of the Army General Shavendra Silva.
The Army Commander said that while the booster vaccine for frontline workers commenced yesterday, this would be followed by the booster shot being administered to those over 60 and then to the above 30 category. Those who have received their second dose of the vaccine six months ago would be eligible to receive their booster shot under their specific age categories. They will be vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine as their third (booster) dose.