The first sitting of new Local Government Authorities will be held on March 2, Provincial Councils and Local Government Ministry Secretary Kamal Pathmasiri said.

Speaking to the Daily News yesterday, the Secretary said a fresh Gazette would be issued in this regard either today or tomorrow.

He said this decision was arrived at a discussion with Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya last week.

“Earlier the date for the first sitting had been fixed as February 15. However, holding the first sitting on this date is practically impossible as it takes time to finalise the members’ list of each LG body.We already know the members elected from the First-Past-the-Post system, but the respective political parties have to nominate the members for the seats they have won under the Proportional Representation system.This has to be done by the General Secretaries of respective political parties. It may consume time,” he explained.

He said a fresh Gazette would be issued extending the date of first sitting from February 15 to March 2. He said the Provincial Councils have already started improving infrastructure facilities in each and every LG body to house the increased number of members under the new electoral system. “Renovation of buildings and purchase of furniture have already started. If they need any additional funds, we will make arrangements to give them,” he added.

Colombo Municipal Council Commissioner V. K.Anura said a discussion would be held with the newly appointed Council members to decide on the location of CMC sittings due to space restraints at the Council premises.He said hiring BMICH is still an option and not finalised. 

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