Southern Highlands

IRC Mendi office to reopen

 

This was confirmed in a meeting held between the Southern Highlands Provincial Administrator, Joseph Kajetan, and IRC Commissioner General Sam Koim in Mendi yesterday.

The IRC office in Mendi closed down in 2017 during election related violence.

Since then Southern Highlands taxpayers were serviced by the Hagen Regional Tax Centre. The Commissioner General and the IRC team visited Mendi to see the business activities in the province and explore the possibility of reopening its office.

PM’s Department to fund SOE

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill made this announcement yesterday afternoon in Port Moresby when announcing the government delegates’ visit to China on June 21, 2018.

O’Neill said the actions of those few people in Southern Highlands have brought shame to the whole province.

However, he said those leaders who were involved in one way or another will be going to Southern Highlands today to talk to the people.

The PM stated that this is not a new issue; it is an ongoing one that has been experienced time and again.

Internal RPNGC transfers to tackle SHP unrest

In a statement, Acting Commissioner of Police - Chief of Operations, Jim Andrews, said he is now making the following internal transfer directives so that the Southern Highlands issue can be effectively addressed.

The changes are:

Disorder in SHP

Acting SHP Provincial Administrator, Joseph Cajetan, says the province lacks tangible development because the engine room lacks coordination.

“Our provincial head office and the public servants are not in order,” reiterated Cajetan.

“To begin with, the second-storey of the office is condemned. There is no electricity and water. Public servants are in their houses and villages while others are roaming around in other parts of the country,” added Cajetan.

He said getting the office in order is his immediate task however, financial constraints is the biggest setback.

Kutubu in need of water

Kutubu LLG President John Kila said relief supplies have been flowing but really need water for cooking.

Kila in a media briefing on Thursday thanked Oil Search and Mineral Resources Development Authority for their tireless effort in helping the people of Kutubu.

He said without the help from such companies and the Government, people of Kutubu will severely affected by the disaster.  

“We are thankful that such big companies are there to help our people.

“Without them, most of our people will be affected.”

70 soldiers deployed to disaster provinces

The troops are from the First Royal Pacific Island Regiment at Taurama.

Yesterday they were flown out by the Australian Hercules C130 from the PNGDF Air Transport Wing at Jackson’s International Airport

On their way to the two disaster provinces, the first 35 troops were inserted into Hela from Komo airport while the next 35 troops bound for Southern Highlands have been inserted from Hagen.

They will be traveling by road to Southern Highlands from Mt Hagen.

Among the troops that were deployed are 10 specialist combat military trained medical personnel.

‘People are really scared’

From communication with locals in the area, this newsroom has gathered that:

Siane Falls village in the Bosavi area, Southern Highlands, reported four collapsed buildings, while most of their houses are on the verge of falling down. 

Landslides were experienced there but thankfully, no deaths. 

All Soro Moro people gathered at the supermarket as of 10pm last night. There has been heavy rain, thunder and lightning, but no wind. 

“People are really scared,” Loop PNG was told.

Ethical public sector leaders can boost services

The launch of the district training roll-out coincided with the commencement of two PNGIPA short courses for district-level public servants.

More than 30 public servants from District Development Authorities will attend the courses over two weeks, including participants from the districts of Ialibu-Pangia, Nawaeb (Morobe), Nuku (West Sepik), Sohe (Northern) and Talasea (West New Britain).

Magnitude 7.5 quake rattles Papua New Guinea

The quake had a depth of 35 kilometres, hitting at about 4am local time, according to the USGS.

The quake struck in the heart of mainland PNG in Southern Highlands province.

According to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, the quake did not present a regional tsunami threat.

About a half an hour later, a second earthquake with a magnitude of 5.5 struck in the same area. It had a depth of 39 kilometres.

PNG rests on the 'Ring of Fire', a known hotbed of seismic activity due to a tectonic plate that spans the Pacific.

 

     

SHP counting set for weekend

Ialibu-Pangia Returning Officer, Michael Ariando, told Loop PNG this morning that all ballot boxes will be extracted to Mendi today and tomorrow.

Ariando added that about nine ballot boxes in the remote area of Ialibu-Pangia will be extracted today to Ialibu station before transporting them to Mendi.

He said the weather pattern in the province has also affected polling, which resulted in the late extraction of the ballot boxes.

However, despite the late polling in some areas, voting has been peaceful since Sunday, July 2.