by Scott Waide – EM TV News, Lae
Transport and Infrastructure Minister, Nixon Duban, says there is renewed government focus on the Ramu-Madang highway following the ongoing deterioration of the road.
Duban says there has also been a commitment made by the Prime Minister to get the road fixed with or without donor assistance.
In 2014, a bridge along the Ramu Madang Highway was washed away along with several others. It has not been repaired since then.
Last month, with the arrival of rain marking the end of the long dry spell, the highway has been hit again with floods that temporarily severed the flow of traffic.
Road users salvaged parts of the bridge and built a temporary passage. Bigger trucks carrying much needed supplies need a lot more help.
Further up the road, a sealed section built using donor funding collapsed after two days of continuous rain.
This is just one of several sections along this highway that need urgent government attention.
Apart from a short portion sealed in the last five years, the Ramu to Madang highway, is perhaps the most neglected of all of PNG’s national highways.
Yet the road links Madang to the Highlands and Lae City and is an important supply route for the country.
The state of the road has increased travelling time and delays are costing businesses and individuals millions of kina.