Concerned Wara Mombol Community members in Port Moresby had gathered on Monday April 4, at the Jack Pidik Park to raise funds and awareness towards relief efforts at home following a devastating flash flood on March 24.
Whilst the aftermath of the catastrophic earthquake of February 26 still remains, all attention has been focused on the seven provinces and their communities most affected, with little or no attention paid to the river community in North Waghi District in Jiwaka Province, that was devastated by the massive flash flood in late March.
In a media statement yesterday (April, 4), the Port Moresby Mombol Community reported that those affected have suffered the same heart-rending loss of lives, domestic animals, cash crops, homes and properties estimated in the hundreds of thousands of kina.
Reports received by EMTV’s Mi Ripot on March 25 stated that on March 24 at around 3am, heavy rains and a flash flood ripped down the steep banks of the Kaunang stream, and washed away the bridge connecting North Waghi district with Jimi district, feeding it to the already swollen Mombol river.
The flood killed three people; a mother, her five-year-old son and a young man. Another two, including the late mother’s four-year-old son and a man were seriously injured and are recovering at Kudjip Nazarene Hospital.
According to the statement, those who lost their lives were identified as five-year-old late Michael Lee Philip and his mother late Mol Philip from the Kipinganem tribe, Kuiona Ward 1 and late Thomas Kalamp from the Tunskup tribe, Kuiona Ward 2.
Late Michael Lee’s brother, four-year-old Peter Philip and a Kolip Pel from the Tsenglapkanem tribe, Molka Ward 1 are currently recovering at the Kudjip Nazarene Hospital. The flood washed away numerous domestic livestock, including 300 households, a vehicle, food and coffee gardens.
The statement reported that an estimated 2000 people in the Banz LLG are affected especially the Bamblinghe Tribe consisting of 6 Council Wards, including Banz Town and Andpang communities living along an estimated 20km stretch of the river bank from Kusnguna village (Upper Mombol) to Waghi Valley (Lower Mombol).
The entire Jimi District has been cut off by the flood.
“Wara Mombol Flood is the biggest and the worst natural disaster ever that has happened in North Waghi district, Jiwaka province,” Provincial Disaster Coordinator John Kupul said.
A damage report will be published soon by the Jiwaka Provincial Disaster Relief Committee.
The NCD-based Wara Mombol Flood Disaster Relief Committee has confirmed working in close consultation with the Jiwaka Provincial Disaster Relief Committee to seek support to help affected communities.
“We extend our appeal to Government, donor agencies, business houses and kind hearted individuals to extend assistance towards our people affected by the flood,” a representative of the Wara Mombol Flood Disaster Relief Committee told EMTV Online.
“We further extend our sincere appreciation to all who have already contributed in cash and kind”.
The Committee also advised the people at home to show solidarity and resolve in the face of this hardship and not take advantage of the situation to harass and intimidate relief workers and the travelling public coming into and going from Banz, especially from Jimi.
A final fundraising drive will be done this Saturday, 7 April 2018 at Jack Pidik Park starting from 12 noon to 5pm.
For generous donations or further information, please contact the following Committee members;
- Robbie Kombiye – 75307850;
- Greg Malie – 71359962/75314303;
- Shedrick Singip – 74541808/76222133;
- David Kui – 75756541 and
- Jiwaka Provincial Disaster Coordinator, John Kupul – 73567313.