Delay in allocating land for Battaramulla bus terminus discussed | Daily News

Delay in allocating land for Battaramulla bus terminus discussed

Sectoral Oversight Committee on Energy and Transport Chairman MP Nalaka Bandara Kottegoda stated in the Parliament yesterday (25) that concerned parties including the Urban Development Authority would be called again in the next Parliamentary week to take a final decision regarding the allocation of land from Battaramulla city for the construction of a bus terminal.

The Committee expressed strong displeasure with the inaction of the Urban Development Authority officials who had previously been called to this committee to discuss building a bus terminus in Battaramulla.

It was also decided to appoint a sub-committee under the chairmanship of MP Yadamini Gunawardena to take further action in this regard and to speed up the work of allocating suitable land in the Colombo Fort area to park the buses at the Colombo main bus station until the next trip.

Also, the committee expressed its displeasure regarding not disclosing in the previous discussion the fact that there is a plot of land near the Battaramulla junction for this purpose. Officials said that because the land is located near the Battaramulla junction, there is a possibility of causing problems including traffic congestion.

There was a discussion regarding the future plans of the Sri Lanka Transport Board and matters arising from the 2021 annual report. Many administrative problems of the Sri Lanka Transport Board were also discussed here. It was also revealed that some who have no OL qualifications have become depot managers and there are many problems regarding accounting, technical aspects and other sectors.

The need to free the Sri Lanka Transport Board from political interference was also discussed. As pointed out, some unqualified trade union leaders are appointed to high positions including depot management after an election.

Also, in 2021, due to the circumstances including the Covid crisis, the board incurred a loss of 3,059 million rupees, but in 2022, the board recorded a profit of 485 million rupees, the officials said.

They pointed out that among the current problems, the shortage of drivers and conductors is the main issue. It was revealed that there are currently 26,561 employees while there are 800 driver and conductor vacancies. Accordingly, the officials said that arrangements would be made to make these recruitments under the approval of the government.

It was also revealed that nearly 500 conductors in 107 depots across the country have been accused of various misconduct and the officials pointed out that they are paid their salaries until the investigations are completed.

Officials pointed out that the salary scale is very low and it is a barrier for new recruitments. Nalaka Kottegoda, Chairman of the Committee, ordered to inform Parliament and the Finance Ministry Secretary regarding salary revisions.

He also advised the committee to provide a rough report on fuel usage and management.

MPs Dayasiri Jayasekara, Yadamini Gunawardena, Udayakantha Gunathilaka Kumarasiri Ratnayake, Isuru Dodangoda, Rajika Wickramasinghe and Jagath Kumara Sumitrarachchi and others participated in the meeting.

Add new comment