Wutung Border Complex unacceptable: Maru

Minister for National Planning and Monitoring, Richard Maru, has labeled the Wutung Border Post as totally unacceptable.

He said this during a visit to the Wutung Border Post at the PNG-Indonesia Border on the third and final day of his official visit to West Sepik Province.

The Minister has urged colleague Minister for Inter-Government Relations, Kevin Isifu, to take charge of a technical team to furnish a full report into issues currently stopping the office complex from being used.

Minister Maru and his delegation visited the Wutung Border Administrative Office Complex, which has been lying idle since it was completed in December 2014.

The complex was built under the K90 million Wutung Trade and Investment Programme managed by the Border Development Authority (BDA).

The complex was built to house customs, police, defen2018ce, immigration, the National Quarantine and Inspection Authority (NAQIA) and commerce.

It is understood the building currently has a few defects and needs installation of necessary utilities such as water and electricity.

“This place has been sitting like this since 2014 and it’s totally unacceptable. We left it in the hands of BDA and we thought it would happen but it hasn’t happened. Minister (Isifu) I think you need to take control of this now and provide the leadership and we will definitely support you,” said Maru.

He added “Before we can go to NEC we need to have the details.”

Wutung Councilor, Raphael Tungle, also met the delegation and informed them of the outstanding commitments.

They include rural electrification, sanitation and water supply projects under the social component of the K90 million.

“MOA is still sitting there, that is why we cannot move forward and have this office complex opened up,” said Tungle.

Inter-Government Relations Minister, Kevin Isifu, said those issues will be looked as well.

“As a Government we will have to address this issues quickly and rectify those defects and then we can get the certificate of commission on this facility.”

K90 million Wutung Trade and Investment Programme was a funding arrangemtn between the Government of PNG and the Asian Development Bank.

Minister Maru announced on the first day of his visit a proposed Special Economic Zone for Sandaun, and addressing borders security was part of the agenda.

Cedric Patjole