19 Dec 2018

Bougainville airports shut down over law and order concerns

11:15 am on 19 December 2018

The two main airports on Bougainville in Papua New Guinea have reportedly been shut down by law and order concerns.

Buka Airport

Buka Airport Photo: facebook

The Post Courier reported the operator of Buka Airport, National Airports Corporation, has told the Autonomous Bougainville Government that the airport will be closed to aircraft operations for an indefinite period following law and order issues.

As well Aropa Airport, which was supposed to be open to the public this week, would stay closed until 8 January due to several issues.

The head of NAC, Richard Yapo, said the reason for the closure was the heightened safety and security risk that was imposed on aircraft operating into and out of Buka because of the lack of fencing.

He said interfering with and damaging runway lights, pedestrians and animals crossing, vehicles driving on the runway and the strip being used as a playground had become the norm.