President Mahinda Rajapaksa had discussions today on the Weliweriya water issue.
The President’s office said that the discussion was held with government officials and public representatives from Weliweriya.
The discussion had focused on the water contamination alleged to have been caused by a gloves factory in the area.
After listening to detailed accounts from residents, factory representatives and other officials, the President offered the following solutions to help resolve the situation:
(1) The main priority of the authorities in this region will be to ensure that the people receive safe water.
(2) The Government Analyst’s Department will carry out testing of the water and issue a report.
(3) If the report reveals that the factory has operated in a wrongful manner, the factory will be shut down immediately.
(4) If the report reveals that the factory has operated within the regulations, the company will be given a stipulated amount of reasonable time to relocate to a BOI zone.
In addition to these specific aspects, President Rajapaksa also stated that any new factory that will be located in Sri Lanka must be constructed within a BOI zone to prevent these types of problems in the future.
The residents and the factory representatives, under the guidance of the President, agreed to allow the factory to make use of the items that have already been produced prior to ceasing of operations and to allow the factory administration to function until the report is published, the President’s office said.
The resident expressed satisfaction at the agreements reached and agreed to work with officials to help resolve the problem. President Rajapaksa urged the citizens to refrain from taking the law into their own hands if a problem arises in the future and requested all parties to try their utmost to resolve crises through discussion.
Minister of Economic Development Basil Rajapaksa, Minister of Water Supply and Drainage Dinesh Gunawardena, Minister of Social Services Felix Perera, Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga, Secretary of the Ministry of Defense and Urban Development Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, Gampaha District parliamentarians, Western provincial council members, senior military officials and several other high-ranking government officials were present at the discussion. (Colombo Gazette)