By Ajith Siriwardana
It was revealed at the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) that Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) had spent Rs.5, 220 million (Rs.5.2 billion) for emergency power purchasing during 2016 and July, 2019. When inquired, CEB officials had said that emergency power purchase has to be done as required power plants were not being constructed according to the power generation plan. The COPE said however, it was observed that the emergency power purchasing has become common occurrence without adhering the proper tender procedures. They pointed out the need to implement the long term power generation plan to avoid this situation.
The COPE also pointed out that it was not suitable to make emergency power purchasing when the CEB had obtained Rs.296,238 million as loans from the Treasury by 2018. The matters came up during the COPE meeting convened at Parliament Complex on Tuesday with the participation of its Chairman Sunil Hadunnetti.
The COPE also questioned regarding the non-operation of the 50 mobile diesel generators purchased at a cost of Rs.3 billion and ordered to submit a report within a month on how the purchasing took place and the prevailing situation of the generators.
It was observed that the emergency power purchasing has become common occurrence without adhering the proper tender procedures