Cyprus Mail

Minister assures that private reservoir poses no danger

Agriculture Minister Costas Kadis assured on Friday there was no cause for concern over a private reservoir in Ha Potami, Paphos, whose embankment looks like it has partially collapsed.

Kadis said the private company is drafting an action plan and has put measures in place.

“There does not seem to be any problem at the moment,” he said.

As a precaution, however, the authorities, including the police, are on stand-by.

“The situation is under control, it is manageable and is being monitored continuously,” he said.

Reports emerged on Thursday evening that the earthfill dam was leaking and there were fears the water could affect the Limassol to Paphos motorway if it burst. Police issued a warning to motorists that there might be road closures as a private dam could overflow during the night.

According to Green party MP Charalambos Theopemptou the reservoir was constructed to provide water for a golf course nearby.

The party said the dam was illegal for years, an issue raised in past reports by the auditor-general.

The Greens said it had been built without the necessary environmental studies and planning permits.

A planning permit was issued in 2006 on condition that the applicant would also secure permission to intervene on government land. In 2008, the cabinet rejected the company’s application for the permission. The Paphos district administration asked the company to demolish the dam by the end of May 2009.

Eventually, it was granted a permit in 2012.

“Today’s events are a continuation of the improper legitimisation of illegal facilities constructed without planning and studies,” Theopemptou said.

The dam in question was approved by town planning in an “unorthodox way” despite the strong disagreements of environmental groups.

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