Lae homes damaged

The recent heavy downpour in Lae wreaked havoc on a number of properties, with floodwater flowing into homes from clogged up drains.

A community at Four-Mile, ward four, stage two, lost their properties during the February 17th torrent while over 40 homes were damaged when the storm water diverted from its original course and flowed through people’s homes, polluting drinking water, flooding toilets and displacing families.

Community leader, Pastor Joseph Nianfop, has lived at Four-Mile for 15 years now. He said this is the second time for such an occurrence.

“First one occurred last year and caused a lot of issues like skin diseases and illness due to the water being polluted with diapers and rubbish,” he stated.

“The damage from the second one this year has been more extensive, taking with it building materials, phones, shoes, everything is gone.

“We really feel the loss.”

Most of the residents were fast asleep that night when water started flowing into their homes.

Since then, they have been living on wastewater as it has been raining the past few days.

The community leaders have submitted letters requesting for assistance to relevant government bodies, including the disaster office and Lae City Authority.

“We need drinking water,” Nianfop said. “We lost our water drums in the flood, our bathrooms have flooded while some houses were washed away.

“We call on the Lae City Authority and provincial government to assist us, especially to divert the water back to its original course.”

Students have also been affected as most of them lost their school uniforms and shoes during the flood.

The community urgently needs the assistance of a backhoe to block off the running water.

Carmella Gware