The need for housing for urban dwellers was again brought to the forefront during the commissioning of staff institutional houses for the Mineral Resources Authority (MRA).
MRA managing director Philip Samar said at the event that the MRA board and management recognised staff members’ need for shelter which is a basic need.
He said the MRA was making efforts to address this issue by providing the units.
He said the MRA board had approved a total of 50 units to be built for staff occupying 50 strategic positions within the organisation.
The 25 units commissioned yesterday were the first. The rest will be constructed next year. The 25, three bedroom institutional residential units are located at Eight Mile in Port Moresby.
“This is our contribution to changing the employment landscape where no longer should we have to live with the excuse that housing is not a condition of employment. The O’Neill government has prioritised housing for Papua New Guineans and we will support the government in realising this by building the next 25 units next year to be followed by a fully fledged staff home assistance scheme.”
The other staff members will be given home assistance packages beginning this year to assist them secure their own homes.
Board chairman Robin Moaina said his board realised that housing was a key incentive to retaining staff.
He said they had seen some staff leave the organisation due to lack of housing.
Gathered at the occasion were MRA board members, staff members, mining industry representatives, National Housing Estates Ltd and other government department representatives.