COPE looks into performance of Mahaweli Authority

The Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) has directed the Mahaweli Authority to examine its policy and practices and re-invent the fundamentals of the body itself to reflect the modern world.

COPE chairman Prof. Ranjith Bandara gave these directives while taking exception at the outdated ‘Vision’ statement and Key Performance Indicators (KPI) of the Mahaweli Authority following consistent failure to deliver its services with integrity and quality.
The committee further looked into the lack of digital infrastructure in the land reservation process and directed the Mahaweli Authority to take measures to strengthen it.

Regarding the conveyance of lands, the COPE directed the Mahaweli Authority to submit the following: (1) Report on existing land conveyance procedure to be submitted within 02 weeks. (2) Report on how lands conveyed for investment purposes was completed including details of the investor, purpose of investments, etc. to be submitted within 02 weeks. (3) Report on illegal constructions taking place within the purview of the body to be submitted within 01 month.

Following an incongruence between the annual report submitted to parliament and the data sought out by the Auditor General’s office, the COPE called for an urgent report of all lands released in 2022. This comes on the heels of the President’s directive where a stay order was made on the issuance of lands.

The COPE, upon scrutinizing the Recruitment Process Management, found that there were vacancies that had not been filled up owing to suspected reservations for promotions to the existing staff internally. The Chairman of COPE immediately directed that the vacancies be filled within the next 60 days.

The committee directed the Mahaweli Authority that all issues be revisited for review and accountability on July 21, 2023.