Governor shoots down proposal | Daily News
Plans to import Rs 644,000 per chair for WPC

Governor shoots down proposal

Western Province Governor Hemakumara Nanayakkara yesterday ordered the Western Provincial Council Chief Secretary to cancel the order for the importation of chairs from Spain with immediate effect.

Addressing the media at his office in Rajagiriya yesterday, the Governor charged that the procedure followed to order chairs for the Western Provincial Council Chamber is a gross violation of accepted norms and procurement procedures.

“There is no evidence to say who has proposed to purchase chairs similar to that of Parliament,” he added.

The Governor further said that no one can estimate the cost of a chair in Parliament because all the fixtures and fittings in the Parliamentary building have been given as a gift by the Japanese Government to Sri Lanka.

“Investigations have revealed that the Rs.644,000 per chair was without the import duty and when included the tax, the price of a chair would be approximately Rs.844,000,” Nanayakkara said.

“The council needs only 104 chairs whereas the original plan was to import 150 chairs. Subsequently, it was reduced to 144 chairs. When I inquired from those involved as to the reason for importing more chairs, they said that there could be an increase in the number of Provincial Councillors in the future. But according to my knowledge, there will be a reduction in the number of councilors in the future and it will be 102 after the next election,” the Western Province Governor said.

“Following a written complaint received with regard to the decision of importing expensive chairs, from JVP Western Provincial Councilor Lakshman Nipunaarachchi, I ordered the WPC Chief Secretary to halt the order and commence an investigation into the matter. Then, the Chief Secretary voluntarily accepted the responsibility of conducting an investigation into the matter.

“Then he appointed a Committee headed by Western Province Deputy Chief Secretary Sirisoma Lokuvithana to prepare a comprehensive report after conducting a full investigation,” Nanayakkara said.

The Committee appointed is comprised of Director (Internal Audit) of the Western Provincial Council K.P. Sanath Prasanna, Director (Engineering) G.W.G. Perera, Director (Finance) W.L.N.I. Wijesundara and Provincial Road Development Authority- Western Province Deputy General Manager L.L.D.G. Liyanarachchi.

The Governor alleged that this four member committee has submitted an incomplete report and by submitting this report they have attempted to mislead the Governor.” I will take necessary action against them within the powers vested with the Governor”.

“Different groups are trying to take personal advantage by making various comments. But as far as I can fathom, this was done in a great hurry by flouting all accepted procurement procedures and the law of the land. As long as I am here, I will not allow these type of things to happen in the future,” the Governor said.

“If I get a reasonable complaint of any misappropriation of funds, abuse of power within the Western Provincial Council, stringent action would be taken. No one can put pressure on me. No Western Provincial Council minister nor officials can presurrise me. I work in an independent manner and with a clear conscience,” he added. Secretary to the Governor P. Somasiri and Advisor to the Governor Athula Perera were also present.



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