Dec 04, 2020

Justice ministry to relocate to WTC for a rent of Rs. 4.7b Featured

According to a cabinet proposal submitted by the Minister of Justice - Ali Sabry, preparations are underway to temporarily shift the Justice ministry to the World Trade Center for a period of two years until the completion of the "House of Justice" project.

The ministry will span across 05 floors of the WTC and the relevant Cabinet paper has already been submitted on November 14 and subsequently approved. 
A cabinet Memorandum on observations made by the Ministry of Finance in this regard, has also made no objection. 

It is said that allocating furniture and partitioning of the building has already commenced, reports add.

A total of Rs. 4.7 billion (4,071,162,245) is to be paid as rent for the 24-month period from 2021-2022.

The company Overseas Realty (Ceylon) PLC has offered these prices for a 35,071 sq. ft. area.

Accordingly, the Justice Ministry will be shifted to the 20th, 21st, 22nd and 23rd floors of the East Tower and the 22nd floor of West Tower at WTC after January 01, 2021.

Booking of a floor at WTC costs around Rs. 26 million, and the shifting of furniture would cost around 02 million per floor, internal sources say.

It is reported that the belongings of the ministry are already being shifted by a company called 'House Movers'.

The decision to shift to WTC takes place despite a previously stated govt. policy decision not to move government offices to rented buildings, and also despite the possibility of finding space in state owned buildings in Battaramulla or Narahenpita. It is therefore said that the decision is met with internal disapproval.

Meanwhile, reports say that it has been compelled to discard the air conditioners presently owned by the Justice Ministry, since office spaces of WTC are already connected to a central A/C system.

Reports also say that 352 employees of the ministry will be severely inconvenienced due to the move.

Even drinking water will have to be supplied at an extra cost while staffers will also face issues regarding affordable cafeteria facilities and parking, 'Sri Lanka Mirror' learns.