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Government should make farmers aware of fertilizer supply plans: Maithripala Sirisena

  • Sirisena notes farmers unsatisfied; warns of major blow to food production

BY Buddhika Samaraweera

Former President and incumbent Government Parliamentarian Maithripala Sirisena has stated that it is very important to make farmers aware of the Government’s plans to provide fertiliser to farmers in the future.

Speaking in Parliament yesterday (17), he said that it is the responsibility of the Government to explain its plan to provide fertiliser to farmers who are currently in a dire situation due to the fertiliser crisis.

“Nano fertiliser and organic fertiliser were imported and such fertilisers have been distributed by now. But when we talk to the farmers, it appears that they are not satisfied. Therefore, the Government should make farmers aware of how it intends to provide fertiliser to the farmers during this Maha season as well as in the coming seasons,” he added.

Speaking further, Sirisena said that the present situation of the farmers is a very serious tragedy. He also said that if the fertiliser crisis is not resolved, there is a risk of a sharp decline in food production in the country.

A proposal to ban the use and importation of chemical fertilisers and agrochemicals, such as pesticides and herbicides/weedicides, was submitted to the Cabinet of Ministers by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and the same was granted approval, following which the relevant gazette notification was issued in May 2021.

However, throughout the past few months, farmers in several areas were seen charging that there is a serious shortage of fertiliser for their cultivations. A number of protests have also been organised by farmers’ organisations and various parties demanding that the Government provide a solution to the fertiliser shortage.