Fast-flowing river claims seven lives

Highlands, Normal

The National, Wednesday 29th May 2013

 FOUR women and three men drowned last week while crossing the fast-flowing Tiyomo River in a remote part of Pangia, Southern Highlands, a local councillor said. 

Among the dead was a pregnant woman and a mother of three from Nipa married to a Pangia man.

Molo Ward One local level government councillor Apaki Yora said the group was trying to cross the river with their coffee bags and garden food to sell at the Pangia station.

Yora said the three villages of Alo, Aikiyara and Tangue  on the banks of the river had a population of 3,000.

They do not have bridges and the people still lived in a primitive way because they have no access to government services, roads, bridges, aid post and schools. 

Yora said the people were frustrated and had started working on a footbridge using bush materials. 

He also requested local MP and Prime Minister Peter O’Neill to fund a permanent bridge. 

Yora said the only help they got was from former Southern Highlands Governor Anderson Agiru.