Parliament cluster growing: Five staffers contract COVID-19
By J.T. de Silva
Five Parliament staffers have contracted COVID-19, Serjeant-at-Arms Narendra Fernando said on Friday (15). He said, relevant medical officers and public health inspectors have been informed.
Accordingly, one employee from the Food and Beverage Division, one from the Transport Division, two from the Parliament Police Unit and one from the Office of the Chief Government Whip have tested positive for COVID-19.
PCR tests were performed on 463 members of the Parliamentary Staff and 15 Ministers and Members of Parliament on 3 January. The MPs and the Speaker have not been diagnosed with the virus.
Some PCR test reports had not been received by 15 January and Parliament sources said that as the Secretary to the Office of the Chief Government Whip had contracted COVID-19, several staffers in the office are likely to be infected with the virus.
Fernando also said PCR tests were carried out on 478 Members of Parliament and 16 ministers and MPs on 15 January at Parliament premises.
Following this development, Samagi Jana Balawegaya’s (SJB) Ranjith Maddumabandara claimed the Parliament premise is not secure for both MPs and other staffers.
He suggested Parliament staffers should undergo PCR tests from time to time. “We hope that the Parliament Business Committee, scheduled to be meet on 18 January, would thoroughly discuss this,” he noted.