Colombo, Nov 13 (newsin.asia) – Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, has called for a national action plan to combat diabetes which he says has transformed into a major Non-Communicable Disease affecting millions of people globally.
Sirisena who took part in a special walk at the Galle Face Green in Colombo on Sunday, to mark the World Diabetes Day which falls on Nov 14 said diabetes had become a major concern for people in Sri Lanka and around the world, and thereby he proposed to implement a diabetes control month which would raise awareness against the killer disease.
During this month, Sirisena said programs would be implemented island wide with the participation of doctors and staff of all hospitals to raise awareness among people about the disease and ways to prevent it.
Sirisena said that today, in Sri Lanka, many people still continued to smoke and consume alcohol, even though they were aware of its consequences and the general public was not keen to stop eating unhealthy food which lead to non-communicable diseases like diabetes.
He said in the future, firm decisions would be implemented to discourage unhealthy food production in the country.
He further stressed the need to show the sugar content in various foods available in the market and implement the tax proposed in the budget proposals for sugary drinks.
In the Budget proposals for 2018, which was presented to parliament last week by Sri Lanka’s Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera, it had been proposed that in the ongoing effort to reduce Diabetes and obesity, especially amongst children, an Excise duty of 50 cents per gram of sugar contained in beverages would be charged.
According to official statistics available from the Diabetes Association of Sri Lanka, approximately 2 million Sri Lankans are living with diabetes while another 2 million have pre-diabetes.