PRIME Minister James Marape’s announcement that his Government is prioritising its development focus on rural areas of the country is a welcoming news.
He announced to the people in Menyamya station in Morobe last Friday that his Pangu Pati-led government was focusing government plans on rural areas of Papua New Guinea.
Focusing on developing the rural districts throughout PNG is the way forward and will open up this country politically, economically and socially.
It will help move our country to a next level.
The announcement is the way forward to change this country.
The Government needs to change our rural districts in order to stop more people migrating into our towns and cities looking for better living and job opportunities.
Not all who move into urban areas get employment, most are unsuccessful and sometimes resort to illegal means to survive.
Our national, provincial and local level government plans, policies and priorities should focus firstly on building roads, bridges, wharves and jetties so that our people can move freely in and out to buy and sell before we start talking about any other rural developments.
Roads, bridges, wharves and jetties will open up many opportunities and change this country.
We can continue talking about education, health, law and order, small to medium enterprises, agriculture developments and resources in the extractive industry, but we will not change PNG overnight unless our political leaders begin to think and plan seriously.
One way of improving rural areas is to find a way forward to give direct funding’s to all established local level government councils and give them political and administrative powers.
At the moment, we are witnessing complaints of services improvement programme funds being mismanaged or misused by politicians, bureaucrats and their cohorts every year.
This is forcing our country to continue borrowing more, which is very bad.
I end by calling on Marape and the National Executive Council to release the Australian aid project funding of K66 million for the maintenance and rehabilitations of 9-Mile-Lae-Bulolo-Wau national highway.
Samson C Napo,
Former Bulolo MP