Concern raised over K80mil sewage pond


LEGAL action is likely to be taken against the East New Britain government to force it to stop work on the K80 million sewage project in Kokopo.
ENB chamber of commerce and industry wants the sewage pond moved inland from its present site at Ulaveo to keep it away from potential tourist-friendly spots near the coast.
Chamber president David Stein said he was confused by the province’s intention.
“The provincial government wants to continue building the ponds where it is now to complete the (Chinese) loan and then relocate it when they reach the second stage,” he said.
“I do not understand that logic because once it is built there, it will be difficult to convince anyone to shift it.
“It seems ridiculous that you are trying to develop tourism and then you go and put sewage right beside the road on the way to Tokua Airport.
“There may be a need to take legal action to force that not to happen.”
Stein said the provincial government is a signatory to the World Health Organisation guidelines which covered such things as the treatment of sewage, but it is not following those guidelines.
Administrator Wilson Matava said the first phase of the project is expected to be completed by the middle of this year, with the second phase to start after two years.
He said the second phase will have a sustainable treatment pond that will be more environmentally friendly.
“There are technologies to mitigate environmental issues which will be captured in the second phase of the project,” he said.

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