10 Apr 2007

Need for emergency supplies in affected parts of Solomon's Choiseul province

7:00 pm on 10 April 2007

Choiseul Province in Solomon Islands says it still waiting for more emergency supplies to be sent on from Gizo and Munda.

Western Province has airports that can take larger aircraft, but the airstrip at Taro, in Choiseul, can only take small planes.

It's Premier, Jackson Kiloe, says in one case a doctor and nurse from Australia had to wait three days before their medical supplies arrived.

Mr Kiloe says the people are not starving, but they do need help:

"We have enough food to distribute to the affected areas for this week. The main needs, beside food, are shelter, with regards to tents, cooking utensils, clothing and basic tools like bush knives so they can be used to build their own houses or shelters while they are in the bush ."

The Premier says proper checks of how many have been affected have been difficult as many of the people are too traumatised to leave their hill top camps to speak the assessment teams.

But the Red Cross field operations coordinator, Andrew MacAllister, who is based in the town of Gizo, in Western Province, says some people are returning to the town for part of the day:

In the last two days people coming back into Gizo during day, people feeling more confident and it is probably a similar scenario throughout the region. People are coming down and using beach throughout the day, but they are not really feeling that comfortable