Colombo: The Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) has admitted before the Human Rights Commission (HRC) that it had neither licence nor authority to reclaim land from the sea in the Colombo Port City Project.
The SLPA, Central Environmental Authority and two environmental organisations were summoned before the HRC; and the SLPA admitted that the project had been started without taking the required environmental clearances.
The HRC has now instructed CHEC Port City Colombo (Pvt.) Ltd to submit all reports on the issue, and another writ application has been filed before the Supreme Court in connection with the landfill at the port, even as all work connected with the port city project has been suspended.
“The company will be taking all necessary steps to provide these requested documents as instructed by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Aviation, to abide by the notification received, without prejudice to the legal rights of the company under the Agreement entered into with the government of Sri Lanka on September 16, 2014 to develop the Port City Project,” an official release said.
The Beijing Stock Exchange listed China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) has pumped in $1.4bn for the creation of the Colombo Port City Project, which is estimated to generate 83,000 local jobs.