Businessman calls on govt to sort out highway issues


TRANSPORT companies operating along the Highlands Highway are losing millions of kina due to poor road conditions, constant compensation demands, criminal activities and natural disasters, Road Transport Association (RTA) president Jacob Luke says.
Luke, who is also the owner of trucking company Mapai Transport, expressed his concern and urged the government to do something to address the issues.
“The Highlands Highway has deteriorated and is in a deplorable state,” he said in a statement.
“The Highlands Highway is becoming hazardous for commuters, trucking companies who are losing millions as a result of stalled traffic, and natural causes.”
Luke said criminals had taken over sections of the highway and were holding the traveling public and transport companies at ransom.
He said police should be properly equipped and protected to deal with people who cause problems along the road.
The government needs to make a law that will protect commuters and businesses using the highway from threats and criminals.
Luke said recently one of the RTA members, Trans-Wonderland, had some of its trucks held up in Southern Highlands due to continuous criminal activities.
He highlighted that the government needed to seriously look at:

  • Engaging the Defence Force Engineering Division for roadwork;
  • engaging the engineering division for roadswork partnering civilian contractors owned by RTA members; and,
  • Reactivating the Works Department and all its set up sites.
  • Luke said the RTA was ready to work with the government to ensure some of the issues affecting the highway were addressed promptly.