State to reclaim airport land

National

By HELEN TARAWA
PEOPLE living near airports have been warned that land belonging to the State will be reclaimed, meaning that they have to vacate.
Lands and Physical Planning Minister Justin Tkatchenko made the call yesterday when issuing the approval (direct grant) for 35 hectares of State land for the expansion of Vanimo Airport in West Sepik.
“No one should be residing in those aerodrome areas. Aerodromes in the country need to be protected,” Tkatchenko said.
The issue arose when a real estate firm recently developed the land along the flight path at Jackson Airport in Port Moresby.
The firm and the Civil Aviation Ministry are discussing the matter.
The aim is to find a solution “and hopefully having that land cleared”.
“I will work with Civil Aviation Minister Alfred Manasseh and the National Airports Corporation senior management, the developers and the National Capital District Commission,” Tkatchenko said.
“It will be quite intense to resolve some of those issues because people have spent thousands and millions to develop the real estate projects.” Manasseh said erecting buildings close to airport runways was a safety risk for passengers and those living there.
“We discourage people from building their houses and establishing businesses around the aerodrome. Buying houses around those areas is risky,” he said.

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