BALANCING ACT Responding to questions during a Central Bank of Sri Lanka webinar titled ‘State of the Economy, Challenges and Outlook…’ in mid-May, its Governor Deshamanya Prof. W. D. Lakshman conceded that “everything has gone against our expectations because of this pandemic situation [the third wave]…” He was also asked whether the economy should be prioritised ahead of locking down to stem the rise in caseloads at the time. To this end, Lakshman called for unity among opposing camps on what is a vexed question plaguing even the richest nations on Earth. “Both have to be done simultaneously – one cannot be abandoned for the sake of the other because there are issues of the survival of people’s jobs and incomes,” he asserted, adding: “I hope there will be a consensus on how we should handle this third COVID-19 wave.” Since then, we have witnessed a gradual easing of ‘travel restrictions’ with the trend of cases and deaths seemingly past their third wave peak – although we’re by no means out of the woods at this juncture. Be it our politicians or the citizenry, this may well be the time to unite in the interest of the nation and people.