by Tokana Hasavi – EM TV, Port Moresby
National water regulator, Eda Ranu has announced a debt level of close to K50 million and urges customers to start paying up.
The water regulator has also made a request for a major upgrade of the city’s aging underground pipe system.
Eda Ranu Chief Executive Officer, Henry Mokono says the debt issue is into its fourth year, with disciplinary forces and government departments highlighted as the main consumers that owe money.
Another pressing concern for the water regulator’s estimated K50 million debt levels is the aging underground sewerage system and treatment plants.
Mokono says the system was not designed for the today’s significant city populace.
He added that underground infrastructure cannot continue to sustain the dramatic rise of the city’s population.
The city’s sewerage systems were developed during the 1960s to the early 1970s by the Australian colonial government before Independence.
However, in January 2010, a project was planned between the PNG and Japanese governments to upgrade the system. JICA, the funding arm of the project, explained that the project is still in its procurement process, whilst IPBC, who is the implementer, is yet to confirm a contractor.
Attempts to get information today from IPBC were futile.
In the meantime, Eda Ranu is appealing to consumers to pay their outstanding bills to avoid closure of water supply.