Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today stressed the need for a national program to control diabetes, one of the most common non-communicable diseases in the world today.
The President made these remarks while joining a special walk at the Gall Face Green in Colombo to mark the World Diabetes Day which falls on Tuesday, November 14. This is the eighth consecutive year of the President’s participation in the walk on World Diabetes Day started in Sri Lanka in 2010.
The walk was organized by the Non-Communicable Diseases Bureau of the Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka Diabetes Federation and the Sri Lanka Endocrinologists Association.
Speaking at the event, the President proposed to declare a diabetes control month and implement island wide national programs throughout the month with the participation of doctors and staff of all hospitals to raise awareness among people about the disease and ways to prevent it.
The President also 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.
He said the people still continue to consume alcohol and smoke even though they know of the bad consequences and the general public is not keen on refraining from unhealthy food that lead to non-communicable diseases like diabetes.
The President said in the future he would take firm decisions to implement measures to discourage unhealthy food production in the country.
The President who walked to the Galle Face Green, opened an Arts Exhibition there. Exhibition stalls have been setup at the Galle Face Green to educate people on Diabetes. Dr. Noel Somasundaram presented the President with Arogya Magazine complied in connection with the National Diabetes Day.
Minister of Health Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, IGP Pujitha Jayasundera, Specialist Doctor Prasad Katulanda, Doctor Manilka Sumanathilaka, nurses and the heads of government institutions were among those who joined the walk.