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March 7, 2021
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Works Secretary: Highways Need Long Term Solution

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Image: Works Secretary, David Wereh, during the interview

Works Secretary, David Wereh, says sections causing problems like Wandi, Kassam Pass, Daulo and Wata Bung need a long-term solution.

Wandi in Chimbu Province, continuous rains caused another landslide washing out a temporary bypass on Thursday, cutting off the Highlands Highway once again.

“ The landslides are caused by unstable rock and soil in the area and these are bigger issues, our designs, we have been able to put together, amounts to very high costs,’ says Wereh.

It’s understood that the PNG Government is going into partnerships with the Asian Development Bank to build the Highlands Highway over the next 10 years.

The deal is worth around a billion Kina, its part of the long-term solution the Works Department is working on to fix the Madang-Lae and Highlands Highway.

But, for the mid term, the Works Department is looking to engage provincial works and district authorities that have the capacity to maintain road sections.

“We can coordinate with local MPs to come up with a proper management approach,” says Wereh.

The Works Secretary also said contractors will be asked to create work camps along the highway to maintain and repair the roads.

 

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