A former Sri Lankan lawmaker is making headlines after he biting into a raw fish during a news conference in an attempt to prove it did not transmit COVID-19.
Dilip Wedaarachchi, an opposition lawmaker who formerly served as the country’s fisheries minister till 2019, bit into the raw fish at a press conference in Colombo on Tuesday to encourage people to buy more fish.
Wedaarachchi said in the press conference that the COVID-19 pandemic had led to a slump in Sri Lanka’s fish industry, a major source of the country’s revenue.
“I brought this fish to show you. I am making an appeal to the people of this country to eat this fish. Don’t be afraid. You will not get infected by the coronavirus,” the 63-year-old said. He then bit into the fish.
Watch the video here:
According to a Reuters report, fish sales in the country have plummeted after a major COVID-19 cluster emerged in the Central Fish Market in the outskirts of the capital last month.
The outbreak in the main wholesale market led to thousands of infections and spread across the country. Tonnes of fish have been left unsold after the market was forced to close, and prices plunged as people refused to buy.
This isn’t even the first time a public figure in Sri Lanka has come up with an unusual appeal. A Sri Lankan minister had climbed a coconut tree to raise awareness about the shortage of coconuts on the island.
(With inputs from Reuters)
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