Feb 07, Colombo: The Presidential Committee appointed to inquire into the damage caused to life and property due to the collapse of the Meethotamulla garbage dump has recommended establishing a central institution to manage waste disposal in Western Province.
The final report of the Presidential Committee was handed over to President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday (06) at the President's Official Residence by the Chairman of the Committee retired Appellate Court Judge, Dr. Chandradasa Nanayakkara. The Secretary of the Committee D.M. Karunaratna and the Legal Officer Mr. Palitha Abeywardena were also present on this occasion.
A section of the mountainous landfill in Meethotamulla collapsed on 14 April 2017 causing a landslide that buried dozens of low-income homes and killed 32 people.
The short-term and long- term recommendations regarding the disposal of Meethotamulla waste were included in the Committee report and it has pointed out the importance of out the importance of establishing a central institution to manage the process of disposing of waste in the Western Province, the President's Media Unit said.
The report has highlighted the importance of establishing garbage incinerators and the President has said that he will give instructions in the future to the relevant Ministries and Institutions to implement the recommendations and proposals of the Committee report.
The Committee report revealed that there was an unusual increase of the expenses paid for the external organizations for the waste disposal process of the Kolonnawa and Meethotamulla areas during the period of 2015 -2016.
The expenses show a gradual increase of allocations by the Colombo Municipal Council and according to the statistics in 2014 the Colombo Municipal Council had paid 64 million rupees and 182 million rupees and 232 million rupees respectively in 2015 and 2016.
The report further revealed that the causes for the tragedy include the fact that Colombo Municipal Council from its initial stages failed to follow a proper method for the purpose of waste disposal as well as not properly implementing the proposals suggested in this regard.