The National, Friday 14th September 2012
By JAYNE SAFIHAO
THE relative of three children buried in a landslide in the Watabum area in Mendi, Southern Highlands, is calling on the task force team to include medical representatives during assessments.
Dr Youngpu Samo, who was in Madang on a two-week emergency medicine course, yesterday said he feared the lack of accountability in the provincial disaster office.
Samo said any funding, particularly the K3 million already earmarked to ensure immediate alternate road access, must be paid directly into the district treasury accounts for transparency.
The team has tabled report to the National Disaster Committee and called for the Works Department to urgently establish access passages for the general public in affected areas.
The report also called for construction work to be sub-contracted to reputable local contractors, hire cars to be used for only a month and for the bodies of those buried to be retrieved so proper burials can take place.
Samo reiterated the importance of having medical workers helping the provincial team.
“The team on the ground must include a medical team to be part of the working committee as there needs to be an assessment on the medical implications, logistical movement of medicine and their supply to those in dire need, with the possibility of an outbreak of disease.”
He said an assessment of aid posts that would be used to help victims had to be carried out.
Prolonged rain in the Southern Highlands has caused major flooding and landslips since last week.
The flooding and landslips have knocked down two major bridges, Yalo, linking Kagua Erave and Mendi, and the Kendagl Bridge.