Former Minister Udaya Gammanpila has given an explanation on why fuel from Russia was not purchased during his tenure as Minister of Energy.
MP Wimal Weerawansa had inquired in Parliament on Wednesday (22) why attempts are not made to purchase fuel from Russia to resolve the current fuel crisis.
In response, Minister of Energy Kanchana Wijesekera said that MP Udaya Gammanpila had been the former Minister of Energy and had also not purchased fuel from Russia during his tenure.
Responding to the claims, MP Gammanpila said a limited trade ban was imposed on Russia by European countries on 26th February 2022 due to the invasion of Ukraine, which resulted in Russia opening up fuel sale to Asian countries following the loss of the European market.
He said the President had removed him from the portfolio of Energy on 3rd March 2022, which was just five days after the trade ban on Russia was imposed.
MP Gammanpila said thereby, he was not provided an opportunity to purchase fuel at a lower cost from Russia during his tenure.
Stating that several opposition MPs had warned of a fuel crisis in July 2021, he said loans from India and China had delayed the fuel crisis by 08 months.
Despite the price of fuel from Russia being reasonable, no measures have been taken by Sri Lanka to make the purchase as yet, MP Gammanpila added. (NewsWire)