By ANDREW ALPHONSE
HEALTH and education are the two foremost development priorities for the Nipa-Kutubu district in Southern Highlands province, local MP Philemon Embel said.
Mr Embel, who is also the Minister for Sports and State Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Constitutional matters, said this last Thursday during a stop-over visit in Inu on the shores of Lake Kutubu and later at Nipa station to launch several projects in his electorate.
Addressing a huge crowd at Nipa Mr Embel said: “A well-educated and healthy population is essential as it contributes to the growth, development and progress of communities, districts, provinces and country.
“Apart from education and health, other areas to be developed include rural electrification, communication networks, roads and bridges, law and order and promoting spiritual developments by supporting the work of churches in the district
“When there is an educated and healthy population in Nipa-Kutubu, law and order will be minimised as citizens will become responsible and respect the rule of law.
“To achieve a well-educated and healthy population, as chairman of the Nipa-Kutubu joint district budget priority and planning committee (JDP&BPC), I have been providing funding to schools and health centres since 2007.”
Mr Embel presented two new school trucks to Lake Kutubu High School and Nipa Secondary School worth more than K106,000 each.
Nipa also received nine new computer sets and nine 8000L Tuffa tanks.
A new classroom would also be built at a cost of K200,000.
Mr Embel also delivered cheques and vehicles to other educational institutions and health centres in the district.
Community and primary schools like Bupuwale, Kar, Kapit, Hip, Kusa, Monsorep, Upa, Pomberel and Askam each received K200,000 and Enganda Primary School received K240,000.
The remote Kantopo health centre on the border of Nipa-Kutubu and Kerema in the Gulf province, received a new ambulance and Nipa health center received K200,000 for urgent maintenance work on
the wards and other facilities.
Mr Embel also delivered K100,000 to the Waro health sub-centre and the Poya, Huim-Konju, Mandamap and Kunjuli aid posts also received K100,000 each.
He also announced that the JDP&BPC had bought an ambulance for the remote Mt Bosavi health centre.
“As there is no roads to the area, the vehicle will be shipped from Port Moresby to North Fly district in Western province where it will be based to ferry medical supplies to the people of Mt Bosavi.”
Mr Embel said, to date, K3 million of RESI funds had been dispatched to schools in the district and K4 million from the healthy sector support programme were used for the aid posts and health centres.
From the K4 million, K1 million was used for the Upper Plateau water supply project and another K300,000 was used for Ekaso water supply project in Lake Kutubu.
Several speakers and community leaders in Nipa and Lake Kutubu commended Mr Embel and his district administration team led by district administrator Robin Pip for equally distributing the services to all the people in the electorate irrespective of political and tribal differences.