The Government will conduct a full investigation on the MV X-Press Pearl ship incident and accordingly take action against those who are responsible, State Minister Dr. Nalaka Godahewa yesterday (28) said.
State Minister Godahewa also denied the allegation that the Government allowed the ship to enter Sri Lankan waters despite having prior knowledge about the disaster that would occur in the ship.
Dr. Godahewa made these observations at a press briefing held at the Government Information Department yesterday evening.
State Minister Godahewa noted that even after the ship entered the Sri Lankan waters, the ship gave no prior notice of any fault, thus there could have been no way for the authorities to know that the ship was having an internal compilation. However, the inquiry will also include the actions taken by the relevant authorities who allowed the ship to enter into the Sri Lankan Waters, he noted.
Meanwhile, Dharshani Lahandapura, the Chairperson of the Marine Environment Protection Authority who was present at the media briefing stated that the full compensation for the damage caused by the New Diamond ship incident has already been obtained.
Commenting on the current situation of the MV X-PRESS PEARL, Navy Commander Vice Admiral Nishantha Ulugetenne stated that there is no risk of the ship becoming a wreck. Since this ship has commenced operations only for a short period of time, it was able to hold on without wrecking, it was noted. He also said it would take around two more days to fully douse the fire. He further said that the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) has a special capability on managing oil spills and Sri Lanka will request their support in the event of any oil spill. Ulugetenne further stated that the Navy and the Air Force are working together to douse the blaze.