Four airstrips will now undergo RAA’s restoration and maintenance program beginning this year.
These airstrips are Wanikepa, Kopiago, Fugwa and Auwi.
The MOA was signed by RAA CEO, John Bromley, and KKDDA Chairman Johnson Tigi last Friday, May 4, in Port Moresby.
On hand to witness the occasion was the local MP and Minister for Immigration and Border Security, Petrus Thomas.
Thomas said the partnership is very timely and will serve those remote areas and cover all four LLGs in the district.
He added that more than 50,000 people in his district will benefit from these rural airstrips.
Thomas added that these airports will open up routes for government services, equipment and materials to reach various government and mission run institutions, aid posts, health centres and schools.
He stated that although the district is currently putting every effort to connect the remaining road links, the airports will also play a significant role in supporting basic services to the district in the medium to long term.
“It will also provide a platform for SME activities that the district is planning to roll out, such as agri-businesses,” Thomas said.
“Exploration companies in the region in the likes of Kili-Tege and Muruk Gas will also benefit from these airports and will attract very good investments.”
The program is the first-of-its-kind in a district in both Hela and Southern Highlands to partner with RAA.
RAA CEO Bromley said RAA was committed to ensuring that the four airstrips will be restored and maintained at the best CASA standards.
RAA is the agency tasked by the National Government to restore and maintain rural airstrips in partnership with district and provincial governments and other development partners.