2021 BLACKOUT : CEB engineers sent non-cooperation email to GM 1 hour before outage

2021 BLACKOUT : CEB engineers sent non-cooperation email to GM 1 hour before outage

2021 BLACKOUT : CEB engineers sent non-cooperation email to GM 1 hour before outage

Written by Zulfick Farzan

04 Mar, 2022 | 2:38 pm

COLOMBO (News 1st); The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL), the country’s electricity regulation held its first-ever public hearing on Thursday (3), on the countrywide blackout that took place on the 29th of November & 3rd of December 2021.

The hearing was conducted by PUCSL Chairman Janaka Ratnayake and an expert committee, where they sought technical explanation and evidence from officials.

Though the Secretary to the Ministry of Power was summoned to the hearing, a Senior Assistant Secretary represented her and only provided documentation for the hearing.

However, the former General Manager of the Ceylon Electricity Board who testified at the Public Hearing revealed that on the 3rd of December 2021, the power outage that took place at 11:30 AM was only restored at 4:30 PM that day.

In a startling revelation, he said that one hour and 15 minutes before the blackout, that’s at 10:15 AM, the Engineers Union of the Ceylon Electricity Board had sent him an email noting that they are resorting to a move of NON-COOPERATION with the now-Former CEB General Manager.

The Former CEB General Manager also admitted that a very brief note on the blackout was produced to the PUCSL dated 5th December 2021, instead of revealing the reasons for the blackout that took place two days earlier.

In his explanation to the PUCSL, he said he spoke to his officers, while the CEB engineers were on a work to rule campaign, and he was notified that there was a setting change on the Kotmale – Biyagama Transmission Line, and if it was not rectified there could another power failure.

“I told them not to do that. I had already filed a complaint with Sri Lanka Police because I had my suspicions. Therefore, I told them NOT to change anything without the approval of Sri Lanka Police,” he told the PUCSL at the Public Hearing, adding that he was unaware of what happened thereafter.

The next hearing on Monday, 7 March will seek evidence from the public.

The PUCSL held the public hearing as prescribed under Section 18 read with Section 15 of the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka Act No. 35 of 2002 and according to the procedure approved by the Commission on public hearing.

Also Read : 2021 BLACKOUT: Committee calls for probe by law enforcement

Watch the Public Hearing Below :

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