MAHAWELI AUTHORITY OF SRI LANKA ACT

Arrangement of Sections

1. Short title.

ESTABLISHMENT AND CONSTITUTION OF AUTHORITY

2. Establishment of the Mahaweli Authority.

3. Special Area of Authority.

4. Directors of the Authority.

5. Director-General of the Authority.

6. Term of office of Directors.

7. Disqualification for being appointed as Directors.

8. Vacancy among directors not to invalidate acts and proceedings.

9. Remuneration and terms and conditions of service of Directors.

10. Meetings and quorum at meetings of the Authority.

11. Seal of the Authority.

POWERS AND FUNCTIONS

12. Functions of the Authority.

13. Powers of the Authority.

14. Departments and agencies of the Authority.

15. Empowering of persons to act for Authority outside Sri Lanka.

16. Delegation of powers of Authority.

17. Staff of the Authority.

18. Appointment of public officers to the Authority.

19. Authority to ensure that financial assistance given for any purpose is utilized for same.

20. Authority not to transact business with enterprise in which a director has interest unless approved by the Minister.

21. Special powers of Authority in respect of certain Departments and Corporations.

22. Special powers of Authority in Special Area.

22A. Special power of Minister.

23. Compulsory acquisition of land in any special Area for the Authority.

24. Possession of land in any Special Area otherwise than under the Land Acquisition Act.

25. Effect of possession under section 24.

FINANCE

26. Funds of the Authority and payment to be credited to Authority.

27. Payments out of the Fund.

28. Power of Authority to call upon public Corporation to carry out certain functions.

29. Financial year of the Authority.

30. Exemption of Authority from payments of taxes.

31. Exemption from certain taxes of approved subsidiaries and investments therein.

32. Emoluments of experts to be free from taxes.

33. Borrowings of the Authority and Government Guarantees.

34. Accounts of the Authority.

ESTABLISHMENT OF CORPORATIONS

35. Incorporation Orders for establishment of Corporations.

36. Corporation to be a body corporate.

37. Functions of Corporation.

38. Powers of Corporation.

39. Board of Directors.

40. Government Directors.

41. Minister may issue special or general directions to Government Directors.

42. Capital of the Corporation.

43. Liability of shareholders.

44. Shareholder Director.

45. Chairman of Corporation.

46. Managing Director of Corporation.

47. Provisions applicable to Corporation where Authority is not sole shareholder.

48. Application of the certain enactments to Corporations.

49. Audit of accounts.

50. Power of Corporation to make by-laws.

51. Certain provisions of this Act to apply mutatis mutandis to a Corporation.

MISCELLANEOUS

52. Powers of Minister to order investigation upon activities.

53. Directions of the Minister.

54. Regulations.

55. Rules.

56. Authority and Corporation to be scheduled institutions within the meaning of the Bribery Act.

57. Members, officers and servants of Authority deemed to be public servants.

58. Local authority not to be constituted without concurrence of Minister.

59. Protection for action taken under this Act or on the direction of the Authority.

60. Interpretation.

SCHEDULES

23 of 1979,

59 of 1993.

AN ACT to establish the Mahaweli Authority of Sri Lanka which shall be the authority responsible for the implementation of the Mahaweli Ganga Development Scheme, to provide for the establishment of Corporations to assist in such implementation, and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.

[Date of Commencement: 19th April, 1979]

1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the Mahaweli Authority of Sri Lanka Act.

ESTABLISHMENT AND CONSTITUTION OF AUTHORITY

2. Establishment of the Mahaweli Authority.

(1) With effect from such date1 as may be determined by the Minister by Notification published in the Gazette, there shall be established an Authority called the Mahaweli Authority of Sri Lanka (hereinafter referred to as the "Authority”).

(2) The Authority shall, by the name assigned to it by subsection (1), be a body corporate having perpetual succession and a common seal and may sue and be sued in its corporate name, and may perform such acts as bodies corporate may by law perform.

3. Special Area of Authority.

(1) The Minister may, with the approval of the President from time to time, by Order published in the Gazette declare any area which in the opinion of the Minister can be developed with the water resources of the Mahaweli Ganga or of any major river to be a special area (hereinafter referred to as "Special Area”) in or in relation to which the Authority may, subject to the other provisions of this Act, exercise, perform and discharge all or any of its powers, duties and functions.

(2) Every Order shall as soon as it is convenient after its publication in the Gazette be brought before Parliament for approval. Any Order which is not so approved shall be deemed to be rescinded from the date on which it is not so approved but without prejudice to anything previously done thereunder.

(3) Nothing in the preceding subsections shall be deemed to preclude the Authority from maintaining any office or stores outside any Special Area or executing outside any Special Area any such work as may be necessary for the discharge of its functions under this Act.

4. Directors of the Authority.

The Authority shall consist of five Directors of whom–

(a) three Directors shall be appointed by the Minister, with the approval of the President; and

(b) two ex-officio Directors, namely—

(i) the Secretary to the Ministry charged with the subject of Finance; and

(ii) the Secretary to the Ministry charged with the administration of this Act.

5. Director-General of the Authority.

(1) The Minister may, with the approval of the President, appoint one of the Directors to be the Director-General of the Authority.

(2) The Director-General shall be the chief executive officer of the Authority.

(3) The Director-General shall preside at all meetings of the Authority and in his absence any Director elected by the Directors shall preside at such meeting.

(4) Where the Director-General is temporarily unable to perform the duties of his office on account of ill health, absence from Sri Lanka or any other cause, the Minister may appoint any Director to act in place of such Director-General.

6. Term of office of Directors.

(1) Every Director shall hold office for a period of five years from the date of his appointment, unless he earlier vacates office by death, resignation or removal.

(2) Any Director may resign his office by written communication addressed to the Minister.

(3) The Minister may, if he thinks it expedient to do so, by Order published in the Gazette, remove, with the approval of the President, any appointed Director of the Authority from office without reason stated.

(4) A Director in respect of whom an Order under subsection (3) is made by the Minister shall vacate his office on the date of the publication of such Order in the Gazette or on such other date as may be specified in such Order.

(5) A Director who has been removed from office shall not be eligible for re-appointment as a Director of the Authority or to serve the Authority in any other capacity.

(6) Upon the vacation of office by any Director the Minister may appoint any person to fill such vacancy and such person shall hold office for the unexpired period of the term of office of the Director whom he succeeds.

(7) Where any Director is temporarily unable to perform the duties of his office on account of ill health, absence from Sri Lanka or any other cause, the Minister may appoint any person to act in place of such Director.

7. Disqualification for being appointed as Directors.

A person shall be disqualified from being appointed or from continuing as a Director if he—

(a) is a Member of Parliament or a member of a local authority; or

(b) is under any law in force in Sri Lanka or in any other country found or declared to be of unsound mind; or

(c) is a person who, having been declared an insolvent or a bankrupt under any law in Sri Lanka or in any other country, is an undischarged insolvent or bankrupt; or

(d) is serving or has served a sentence of imprisonment imposed by any court in Sri Lanka or in any other country.

8. Vacancy among directors not to invalidate acts and proceedings.

No act or proceeding of the Authority shall be invalid by reason only of any vacancy among its Directors or any defect in the appointment of any of its Directors.

9. Remuneration and terms and conditions of service of Directors.

The Directors of the Authority shall be remunerated at such rates and in such manner and shall be subject to such term and conditions of service as may from time to time be determined by the Minister.

10. Meetings and quorum at meetings of the Authority.

(1) Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the Authority may regulate its procedure in regard to the meetings of the Authority and the transaction of business at such meetings.

(2) The quorum for a meeting of the Authority shall, unless the Authority otherwise determines, be three members.

11. Seal of the Authority.

(1) The seal of the Authority shall be in the custody of such person as the Authority may decide from time to time.

(2) The seal of the Authority may be altered in such manner as may be determined by the Authority.

(3) The seal of the Authority shall not be affixed to any instrument or document except in the presence of the Director- General of the Authority, and one other Director, both of whom shall sign the instrument or document in token of their presence:

Provided that where the Director-General is unable to be present at the time when the seal of the Authority is affixed to any instrument or document, any other Director authorized in writing by the Director-General in that behalf, shall be competent to sign such instrument or document in accordance with the preceding provisions of this subsection.

(4) The Authority shall maintain a register of the instruments or documents to which the seal of the Authority is affixed.

POWERS AND FUNCTIONS

12. Functions of the Authority.

The functions of the Authority in, or in relation to, any Special Area shall be

(a) to plan and implement the Mahaweli Ganga Development Scheme including the construction and operation of reservoirs, irrigation distribution system and installations for the generation and supply of electrical energy:

Provided, however, that the function relating to the distribution of electrical energy may be discharged by any authority competent to do so under any other written law;

(b) to foster and secure the full and integrated development of any Special Area;

(c) to optimize agricultural productivity and employment potential and to generate and secure economic and agricultural development within any Special Area;

(d) to conserve and maintain the physical environment within any Special Area;

(e) to further the general welfare and cultural progress of the community within any Special Area and to administer the affairs of such area;

(f) to promote and secure the participation of private capital, both internal and external, in the economic and agricultural development of any Special Area; and

(g) to promote and secure the co-operation of Government departments, State institutions, local authorities, public Corporations and other persons, whether private or public, in the planning and implementation of the Mahaweli Ganga Development Scheme and in the development of any Special Area.

13. Powers of the Authority.

Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law and without prejudice to the generality of the powers conferred on the Authority by this Act, the Authority shall in or in relation to any Special Area have the power—

(1) to construct, maintain and operate such dams, channels, drainage systems, and other irrigation works and structures for the purpose of achieving its objects;

(2) to construct such hydro-power installations as may be necessary for the purpose of the generation and supply of electrical energy:

Provided, however, that the function relating to the distribution of electrical energy may be discharged by any authority competent to do so under any other written law;

(3) to take such measures as may be necessary for water-shed management and control of soil erosion;

(4) to promote, assist in, and secure the settlement of persons on lands, farms and properties in any special area and to make, advance to and pay for or contribute to the expenses of, and otherwise assist persons settling, farming or otherwise developing any such lands, farms and properties or are desirous of so doing and to take all such steps as are necessary or are connected therewith;

(5) to manage farms and to engage in farming, agricultural and horticultural activities of every kind;

(6) to manage, improve, farm, cultivate, maintain, lease, purchase, sell or otherwise deal with all or any part of lands;

(7) to provide advisory and farmer training services to improve cultivation techniques, water management, soil management and the preservation of the physical environment;

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