Bureaucracy blamed for delay in bridge repairs

Normal, Papua

The National, Monday 3rd June 2013

 BUREAUCRACY has been blamed for the delay in the repairs to four bridges in Northern.

The four bridges at Eroro, Girua, Embogo and Kumusi were washed away during Cyclone Guba in 2007.

A frustrated Northern Governor Garry Juffa said he had been following up with the relevant ministers and departments.

“Papua New Guineans must consider the plight of the people deprived of this vital infrastructure that has not been repaired since Cyclone Guba,” Juffa said.

“Five years on, nothing has happened – only lip service.”

It is believed that paperwork is held up at the Works Department and awaiting payment of compensation to landowners for their land before a “Letter of no objection” is issued by AusAID for the contracts. 

The process will take three to six months as it will go through the Solicitor-General and National Executive Council and the Governor-General’s office for the final approval.

“I am emphasising the urgent need to start work on the bridges before the rainy season but I am told that it will take about three to six months to complete all procedures before the contractor is able to start work,” Juffa said.

“This will certainly bring us into the rainy season and the Oro people will once more be expected to wait because of the delayed processes.”

Juffa said the people would continue to suffer because they could not access vital services such as health.

“This lack of progress in itself is a disaster,” he said.