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Johnston slams Opposition for blowing crises out of proportion

22 Dec 2021

Blowing crises out of proportion has become the order of the day for Opposition parties, Chief Government Whip and of Highways Minister Johnston Fernando said yesterday (21). Addressing a ceremony held at the Kottawa Interchange to launch the LankaQR app that enables toll payments for expressway users, the Minister said that crises have become the pet subjects of speeches of Opposition parties. “Whenever they open their mouths, nothing but harangues of this or that crisis come out from them. Take a look at the recent speeches by some of our Opposition politicians. They speak of nothing but crises. Most of them speak only of imminent dangers and possible crises, thereby instilling fear and uncertainty in the minds of people. None of them speaks of how to better the status quo. Their objective is panic-mongering, thinking it would lead to instability which would enable them to return to power again,” he said. The Minister added: “Suppose they were in the Government right now; what would have happened to this country in a situation like this? The difference between them and us is that we never back down in the face of a crisis. We neither retreat nor surrender. We continue to develop this nation amidst challenges. One such example is the introduction of this new app to cut down the time wasted at toll gates of the expressways. Today, we introduce a cashless payment method at toll gates. It is introduced with the help of the Ministry of Digital Infrastructure. There had been a time when the Ministry was nothing but a signboard under the Yahapalana Government, which did nothing for the development of digital infrastructure. “Through the new facility at the interchange, drivers of expressways may scan a QR code through a LankaQR mobile payment app at the toll gate by indicating the relevant amount on their mobile phone. This will take a maximum of 10 seconds to process the payment and reduce the congestion at toll gates.” Associated with Minister Fernando were Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal, State Minister of Digital Technology and Entrepreneur Development Namal Rajapaksa, Ministry of Highways Secretary R.W.R. Pemasiri, and officials of the Road Development Authority (RDA). 

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