By Delly Waigeno – EM TV News, Port Moresby
The Oil Search oil pipeline communities in the Gulf Province have been hard hit in recent times. The first by the prolonged floods, caused by heavy rainfall at the end of last year, and now the drought.
But as a timely Christmas gift, the communities along the pipeline recieved essential drought relief supplies from the company.
Deliveries to these communities occurred on Thursday at Kopi village, located about five minutes from the company’s shore base on the banks of the Kikori river.
Like other Southern parts of the country, Gulf Province has not had any rain since April.
The staple diet of the Gulf area is sago; and the drought has taken a severe toll on them, forcing locals to travel long distances to make sago for their families.
Oil Search Corporate Community Affairs Manager, Paul Sapake, and his team delivered the essential relief assistance comprising 20kg rice bags, cartons of tinned fish and noodles to these communities along the Kikori river.
The locals thanked Oil Search for the relief supplies especially during this festive season.
The pipeline community in the Kikori District covers five tribes; 42 villages; and an estimated population of over 4,500 people.
The Kopi base provides support for the Kumul Marine Terminal, Oil Search and PNG’s only oil export terminal located in the Gulf of Papua.
So far, Oil Search has distributed drought relief assistance to communities it operates in, these are located in Hela, Southern Highlands and Gulf provinces.