Relief supplies for PNG village rotting away

11:06 am on 26 March 2015

Perishable food and relief supplies for flood-affected villagers of inland Gulf Province in Papua New Guinea are rotting away in a Central Province wharf, eight months after they were supposed to be delivered.

The Post Courier reports the Gulf Provincial Government had paid about US$410,000 to two shipping companies to deliver the supplies to Kerema after securing emergency funds from the National Government.

The food items, as well as vital services' repair equipment, are in eight shipping containers which the provincial disaster committee had bought last September as relief aid for the mountain people of Kerema electorate, whose food gardens and homes were destroyed by unseasonal rain and wind.

Some of the shipping containers have been raided and their contents scattered all over the beach or on the open deck of one of the two landing crafts, which the province had chartered to do the delivery run from a clearing near Tubusereia village, east of Port Moresby.

Attempts to speak to Gulf disaster relief officials on Tuesday were unsuccessful.

The governor at the time Havila Kavo, who has since been jailed on an unrelated misappropriation case but has since been released pending an appeal next month, could also not be contacted.