June 01, 2020
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    Voice of America Relay Station to be converted to Covid-19 treatment centre

    March 27, 2020

    The building of a former Voice of America relay station in Iranawila, Chilaw will be converted into a COVID-19 hospital to treat Coronavirus infected patients and Health Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi engaged in an inspection tour of the facility yesterday (26).

     Army Commander Lt. Gen. Shavendra Silva and the Health Services Director General Dr. Anil Jasinghe also joined the Minister in the inspection tour of the hospital which could accommodate 50 patients.

    The Health Minister expressing her views subsequent to the inspection tour said, “The President had instructed the Army Commander to utilise the Voice of America facility to establish a treatment centre for Covid-19 patients. Accordingly, the Army Commander had this facility transformed into a hospital for Covid-19 patients in no time with the coordination of the Health Ministry. This facility can accommodate around 50 patients. It is noteworthy that the Parliamentary, provincial and Local Government representatives are working in accordance with the President’s decision.

    The Voice of America Relay Station was initially planned to be established in Mahakumbukkadawala in the Puttalam District in 1980. However, due to stiff opposition by the residents, it was shifted to Iranawila, Chilaw in 1991. This Relay Station 400 acres in extent was obtained from the government on government lease. It was later handed over to the government in 2017. The Voice of America Relay Station broadcast in 47 languages reaching around 236.6 million people around the world. It comprised of four large buildings.

    Former MP Arundika Fernando, Priyankara Jayaratne, Sanath Nishantha, Puttalam Health Services Director Dinusha Fernando and several others participated in this inspection tour.

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