(LANKAPUVATH | COLOMBO) – Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa today instructed officials of the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing to complete development projects for which the funds were already allocated before the end of the year instead of returning the funds to the Treasury.
The Prime Minister gave these instructions as the subject minister while addressing a progress review meeting as for the third quarter of the Ministry of Urban Development, Waste Disposal and Community Sanitation at Temple Trees.
Sirinimal Perera, Secretary to the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing stated that the focus is now on implementing housing projects through investments to save money from the General Treasury.
The official stated that the ‘100 Cities’ Development Project which was launched last July has now been successfully implemented and most of the development projects are expected to be completed before December 31 this year.
Retired Major General Udaya Nanayakkara, Chairman of the Urban Development Authority, disclosed that there is a plan to build 60,000 new houses by the end of 2024.
Accordingly, 40,000 houses will be constructed for low income earners and 20,000 houses for middle class and other classes, he said. In parallel to the 100 Cities project, 10,000 houses will be built in each town at the rate of 100 houses per city, he added.
Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa instructed the officials not to limit these housing projects only to Colombo but also to implement in the rural areas.
It was revealed that 3,000 middle class houses are planned to be built in the city of Colombo and another 2000 outside Colombo.
The Director General of the Urban Development Authority, Prasad Ranaweera said that steps will be taken to set up stalls selling rural products in conjunction with the construction of walkways that will be operational throughout the island.
The Colombo Metropolitan Urban Project and the Strategic Urban Development Project were also discussed.
At the end of the progress review, the Prime Minister presented to the Heads of Institutions the financial plan and human resource management models to be implemented in each of the institutions of the Ministry.
Dr. Nalaka Godahewa, State Minister of Urban Development, Waste Disposal and Community Sanitation and Sahan Pradeep, Member of Parliament also participated in the review meeting.