Kotte Municipality in dispute with Football Federation

Published : 11:25 am  October 29, 2015 | No comments so far |  |  (1091) reads | 

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TEXT & PICS BY MUDITHA DAYANANDA

A land leased out to the Football Federation by the Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte Municipal Council will no longer be leased out if investigations reveal the Federation has violated conditions in the agreement or has constructed illegal building in the premises, Mayor Janaka Ranawaka said. Investigating the issue on a complaint made to the Council by UPFA Councillor Premalal Athukorala, Ranawaka said the Legal Department had been directed to look into the matter. In his complaint to the Council, Athukorala said the Football Federation had not made the deposit stipulated in the agreement to the Municipality, nor paid rates thereafter. The Councillor also said the buildings constructed in the premises had not been approved by the Municipality. The land which originally belonged to the Urban Development Authority (UDA) was given to the Municipality in 2002 and leased out to the Football Federation for 30 years in 2003. Under the agreement the Federation was to pay Rs. 2.5 million as a deposit and a further payment of the deposit with an additional one percent of the deposit. The Mayor has also taken measures to inform the Sports Minister of the Council’s decision to investigate the matter, in writing. When contacted Chairman of the Federation Anura de Silva denied such claims and said they had made the necessary payments to the Municipality. “We have even paid the amount for the coming years,” he said. Silva said allegations against the construction of buildings without proper approval was false. “These are not true. The former Mayor participated in the opening ceremony as well to lay the foundation stone in the premise. They would not have been a part of the process if this was illegal,” he said. Renovations in the land were being conducted with aid from the International Football Federation. “We don’t have any other income. As this is a national training centre we cant allow the youth in the area to use the facilities. However, the facilities can be used by any one playing in the national level. Allegations that we have not acted in accordance of the agreement that we signed is false,” he said.