COLOMBO, March 13 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa on Friday urged the nation to remain calm saying all steps are being taken to prevent the COVID-19 spread, after the second case was reported in the country.
In a statement, President Rajapaksa said a well thought out plan has been put in place to contain the spread of COVID-19 in Sri Lanka and requested all citizens to act responsibly.
"I request all citizens not to panic unnecessarily and disregard rumors and fake news, as we have not left any room for disruption of day to day life," the president said.
"I urge every citizen to recognize the risks faced by the country and fulfill their national duty and responsibility as a Sri Lankan," he added.
The prime minister, in a statement, also urged the public not to panic over COVID-19 related developments in Sri Lanka and added that recent decisions by the government were taken as a precautionary and preventive measure to keep all citizens safe.
"If we all work together and stay calm, we're certain we can get through this global crisis with minimal impact," the prime minister said.
Hours after Sri Lanka confirmed its second positive case of COVID-19 on Thursday, there was panic buying as supermarkets were crowded with people buying everything off shelves.
Fuel stations were also crowded with long queues whilst the government assured there would be no shortage in basic items and fuel.