Planters Association to find alternate land for new houses in landslide prone areas

Tuesday, 4 November 2014 02:16 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Planters’ Association of Ceylon in a statement said yesterday that it will soon identify alternate land for the construction of new houses for estate residents living in landslide prone areas. Following is the full text of the PA statement: The Planters’ Association of Ceylon expresses its deep regret over the loss of lives caused by landslides in the Koslanda area last Wednesday (9 October) and reaffirms its steadfast commitment to assist other estate residents living in areas facing the danger of landslides, with the co-operation of the relevant government authorities. Following a Cabinet decision arrived at after President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s visit to the disaster site, the roles of the various stakeholders have been defined, in which the Regional Plantation Companies (RPCs) have been tasked with identifying alternate land for the construction of new houses for estate residents living in areas demarcated as landslide-prone by the National Building Research Organisation (NBRO). According to the Cabinet decision, the construction of the houses will be undertaken by the Urban Development Authority (UDA) under the 50,000 housing units development scheme referred to in the Budget proposals. The Planters’ Association, which represents the Regional Plantation Companies (RPCs), welcomes the decision and pledges its cooperation in support of this endeavour. While by no means devaluing the lives that were lost, the Planters’ Association notes however that the true scale of the number of casualties and those unaccounted for is significantly lower than initially reported. The Disaster Management Centre (DMC) has now revealed the casualties of the incident; six people are dead, and 32 unaccounted for (according to a Special Situation Report released on 3 November at 12 noon). The Association also expresses its deep gratitude and appreciation to all those who ensured that the needs of people displaced by the incident were met, and those assisting in the search operation for people who may have been buried by the landslide.