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April 18, 2021
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Remote Edwarki Struggles

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Public Servants, especially teachers and health workers, continue to suffer in remote districts of the country.

The remote Edwarki Station in the Telefomin District is no exception. It is one of the least developed Stations that is only accessible by air and very expensive river travel.

 

This makes it difficult for public servants in Edwarki to carry out their duties effectively.

 

Edwarki Station is part of the Namea LLG, one of the four LLG’s of Telefomin District.

 

It’s very remote and there’s no road network to the provincial capital of Vanimo.

This means, public servants here are forced to pay hefty boat transport fees to access their pay or buy basic goods in town. Sometimes they only visit after a month, or end of a school term for the teachers.

 

For Henry Malan and Solley Warmaram, this is their first posting as teachers at Yellow River Primary School. They spoke about the difficulties they faced on a daily basis, teaching in this remote part of Telefomin District.

 

They had high expectations of teaching in a remote area like Edwarki but to their surprise, it was nothing compared to life in East New Britain, where they originally did their teacher studies.

 

LLG Women’s Representative, Regina Nei spoke about the hardships faced by the women, especially relating to child-births. Most pregnant women are airlifted to Vanimo General Hospital, however, sometimes the small aircrafts don’t arrive, resulting in deaths during child birth.

 

Lesley Laliawo is the Aid Post Supervisor at Edwarki Station. He says most of the aid posts in the area have shut down over the years due to lack of funding, and the difficulties faced in bringing in medical supplies.

 

On Friday July 4th this year, the Member for Telefomin, Solan Mirisim and his delegates went to Edwarki Station, bringing showers of blessings. The major projects announced included K500, 000, for the construction of a communications tower; and another K500, 000, to construct a Council Chamber for the first time.

 

And the launching of the Water Supply Project at the cost of K60, 000. This was jointly funded by Telefomin District Administration and the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade program, Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen.

 

Apart from this, Telefomin District Administration presented sawmills and four 60-horse power engines to help the school and health administration carry out their work effectively, topping it off with over K40, 000, that was distributed evenly to the rest of the local schools and aid posts in the area.

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