Sugathadasa track re-laying commences | Daily News

Sugathadasa track re-laying commences

The Sugathadasa Stadium running track ready for the new redress.
The Sugathadasa Stadium running track ready for the new redress.

Training possible from January - Sports Minister:

The re-laying of Sugathadasa synthetic running track which was delayed for about a year due to tender procedure issues commenced yesterday at 9.15 a.m. under the patronage of Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara. The Access-Konika Joint Venture was offered the contract of re-laying the 200m and 400m tracks recently after the facility was closed in 2013.

According to the Sports Minister Jayasekara, the new track will be completed in December. He also said that local athletes were greatly affected by the closing of the Sugathadasa Stadium running track for three years and that they will be able to start training by next January.

"I regret for the damage caused to Lankan athletics by wasting too much time as we had to call for tenders twice," the Minister said.

The tender has been given to a Rs. 269 million bid to Access-Konika Joint Venture. The same company was offered with the contract after the very first tender calling. But following complaints to the Presidential Procurement Board, blaming that the tender board has acted in a bias manner to approve a company far below the minimum standards for the task, Sports Ministry had to recall for fresh tenders last January.

After a more transparent second tender procedure the same company was given the contract, as they have fulfilled all requirements. The original synthetic running track at Sugathadasa Stadium was completed at a cost of Rs 113 million, but the only big event conducted on it was the 2012 Asian Junior Athletics Championship. After few months the track was in a very dilapidated condition with damages surfacing and the authorities had to stop using it from 2013.

The first tender for the re-laying of the track was called following an inspection visit by the Sports Minister last October. The inauguration ceremony of relaying the Sugathadasa Stadium running track was attended by a large number of ministers and politicians.

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