An estimated 20, 000 people live along the opposite side of Bulolo River and they cross violent floods in rainy seasons.
The Karanas Compound is a declared disaster zone and is home to settlers from Watut and Garaina living along the Bulolo River.
The river has claimed lives, made it harder for children to attend school and difficult to get the sick to hospital.
Often, the dead aren’t taken to Bulolo’s morgue when the river floods. Yesterday, Bulolo MP Sam Basil opened a new footbridge, improved for lasting after previous bridges washed away.
“The footbridge comes after we improved the designs,” he says. But, during his speech to the Watut community at Ward Four, members of the crowd asked if the bridge was permanent.
“The bridge is not permanent, it is temporary” said Basil in response. He said the river is becoming dangerous and the banks are building with silt; to fix the problem would mean an overhaul of the entire area.
Meanwhile, the Morobe Provincial Disaster Office has declared the area a disaster zone and an eviction had been issued, but there is no place to relocate settlers.
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