No permanent bridge yet for Oro since 2007 Cyclone Guba

Men, women and children continue to risktheir lives crossingthe Girua River in Popondetta, Nothern Province.

The Girua bridge was vital link inthe province, connecting many villages and businesses tothe main provincial town.

Since its destruction in 2007 by Cyclone Guba, a permanent bridge has never been constructed.Instead, several temporary bridges were built overthe years. Today,there is no bridge. As seen inthese amateur videos, locals risktheir lives and property crossingthe river.

Deputy Chairman ofthe Nothern Province Restoration Authority Edelbert Gangai said for the last 3 days,the Girua River was too dangerous to cross; villagers and businesses acrossthe river were completely cut off fromthe main town.

Mr Guba saidthe restoration authority is still waiting on proposals submitted to NEC to approver funding for a scoping exercise so that a permanent bridge can be built.

Some public servants who live acrossthe river have had to miss work or risk going to and fro acrossthe river to work each day.

Flights to Popondetta have been cancelled due to continuous rains.

The restoration authority is asking for their political representatives to act quickly for the sake oftheir people’s well-being.

Meantime, Provincial Disaster Coordinator Albert Begembo has cautioned all inthe province to take extra care asthe wet season continues.

Most villages whose food gardens were affected bythe flooded river received some relief assistance fromthe Provincial Disaster Office.

However,the disaster office says a permanent solution is still needed to ensurethe safety of people crossingthe Girua River.

Salome VincentoNational EMTV News

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