By Bethannie Harriman – EM TV, Lae
A road rehabilitation project in one of Morobe’s most populated rural areas, Bukawa, has made it convenient for people to travel to Lae for goods and services.
The Bukawa Road rehabilitation success follows a Japanese government donation of road work machinery that is being used in the project.
Yesterday, Japanese Ambassador, Morio Matsumoto visited Bukawa to see the impact and progress of the road rehabilitation.
He says the Japanese Government will continue to partner with the PNG Government to deliver impact projects throughout the country.
“There are a number of projects which are now under consideration together with the Papua New Guinea Government, Central Government, you can see more and more projects that can be done by Japan and Papua New Guinea cooperation,” he said.
The state of the Bukawa road has been improved, with it, the lives of people living along one of the Morobe’s Provinces major road links.
Villagers say goods and services are slowly reaching them along the road.
“We used to carry our garden produce and walk over ten kilometers, cross the Situm River to catch the PMV on the other side,” says Tricia Johnny.
Local PMV’s are also traveling along the road which used to create a lot of problems for vehicle owners in the past. Costs of maintaining and replacing spare parts have gone down.
“We haven’t spent allot of money on car parts this several months, we used to spend around K300,” says PMV Driver, Kesen Keith.
The improvement of the Bukawa road comes after a JICA funded program that provided machinery throughout the Momase region. In the Morobe Province, the machines have ensured that the job has been carried by the Provincial Works department on this road.
The impact is showing along the Bukawa road, peoples lives are slowly changing, they are seeing a steady increase in cash flow.
Provincial Works Manager, Kingsford Kassen, says the work on the Bukawa road shows that the Works department can fix the Provincial roads.
“We estimated the project to be around K9.7 million, initial allocation has been K2 million, we have been working with that allocation, we expect more funding to come, the initial plan was to bring the road up to gravel state,” he says.
The Japanese Government-funded machinery have been deployed to Morobe, East Sepik, including parts of the Western Highlands and the West New Britain.