Colombo, July 6 (DailyMirror) – The President’s Office last morning came under severe criticism after a tweet was released from President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s official Twitter account which claimed that Sri Lanka was the first country in South Asia to acquire a consignment of Pfizer vaccines.
Over 26,000 doses of Pfizer vaccines arrived at the Bandaranaike International Airport last morning and this is the first consignment from the 200,000 doses which the State Pharmaceutical Corporation will purchase.
Health officials said these doses which arrived yesterday will be administered to pregnant mothers who received the AstraZeneca vaccines as the first doses.
The government came under criticism on social media after a tweet was released on President Rajapaksa’s official Twitter account claiming that Sri Lanka was the first in South Asia to acquire the doses.
State Minister Channa Jayasumana who spoke to the media soon after the doses arrived also mentioned this statement which came under criticism later in the day.
This is because Sri Lanka is not the only South Asian country and neither is it the first to receive the Pfizer. Countries such as the Maldives and Bangladesh received Pfizer through the WHO’S COVAX facility which was administered to their local citizens way before Sri Lanka received it.
In fact Sri Lanka was way down the line.
The tweet which caused much embarrassment was soon deleted from the President’s Twitter account after the mistake was pointed out on social media but hours later a fresh tweet was released from the President’s account claiming that Sri Lanka became the first country in South Asia to ‘purchase’ a consignment of Pfizer vaccines.
However, Minister Jayasumana’s statement could not be retracted as his statement was made on video.