Major Development projects at a standstill

Published : 12:06 am  November 27, 2018 | No comments so far |  |  (0) reads | 

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  • We were in the process of calling for tenders for some of these projects but that has been stopped at the moment
  • We had approval for the project and were about to call for tenders for the feasibility study. When the government changed we had to put the project on hold
  • The Urban Regeneration Project was another major endeavour by the UDA that has come to a standstill due to the political crisis

 

By Indika Sri Aravinda   

Major projects initiated by the Urban Development Authority (UDA) have come to a standstill due to the current political crisis with no signs that it may resume in the 
near future.   


UDA Chairman Dr. Jagath Munasinghe speaking to the Daily Mirror said major projects such as the Light Rail Transit (LRT), Urban Regeneration Project and the acquisition of land by the state have come to a staggering halt.   
“We were in the process of calling for tenders for some of these projects but that has been stopped at the moment. We need cabinet approval for these projects and under the current circumstances we are unable to do anything,” he said.   


Munasinghe went on to say the Authority would have to submit a proposal for a feasibility study for the project, setting the project back by months.   


“We had approval for the project and were about to call for tenders for the feasibility study. When the government changed we had to put the project on hold because we need to get approval once again and ADB bank which was supposed to fund the study did not release the funds,” the helpless official said.   


The Urban Regeneration Project was another major endeavour by the UDA that has come to a standstill due to the political crisis. The construction of 5,000 housing units for low income families has been halted due to the need for cabinet approval.   


“We had to stop other smaller projects such as the renovation and repair of markets and bus stands that were planned as we have no approval,” Munasinghe concluded.   


Meanwhile, speaking to the media on a previous occasion senior government officials confirmed that the progress of several ongoing projects in Colombo as well as other parts of the country was slowly grinding to a halt due to the prevailing political crisis.   


The source said that a number of state institutions were facing a series of issues related to the approvals and funding for ongoing projects as well as those that were to be started.   


“A number of unofficial discussions have been held between the heads of several authorities where this has become an unavoidable stumbling block for the day-to- day functions. We are all in same boat and it is impossible to move forward in this manner,” the official had said.   


The official explained that it was not only mega projects which were slowly grinding to a halt but also projects as minor as the construction of gulleys were facing a similar fate.   


“We have been unable to make some crucial decisions with respect to the projects that are yet to commence. It has become difficult for us to allocate funds for the ongoing projects and upcoming projects 
as well.   


Some bidders and the investors are hesitant to invest because they fear that they would not receive any payments in return.   


We are in a dilemma as to what to do and what not to do. Hence, we urge the necessary authorities to end this turbulence so that these institutions can function as they should,” the official concluded.      

 


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We had to stop other smaller projects such as the renovation and repair of markets and bus stands that were planned as we have no approval
-Dr. Jagath Munasinghe