THE people of West New Britain acknowledged the Government’s recognition of the province during the recent NEC meeting in Kimbe.
We also wish to convey our support for the Government’s plans to assist with the re-development of the Hoskins Airport, Kimbe terminal facilities, Kimbe port and the upgrading of Kandrian and Kimbe hospitals including the district markets.
Credits should also go to WNB Governor Peter Humphreys and, most importantly, to companies and business houses in the province such as NBPOL, Hargy Oil Palm, KBSA and others for their commitment in developing the province over the years.
It is time that the Government places serious efforts and resources into the development of the province to complement and support the local economy.
Over the years, WNB people have seen vast commitments and contribution in service delivery, road maintenance, resource developments and other potential agricultural and economic activities delivered by the private sectors but limited Government input.
We believed the Government must take the lead in delivering necessary basic services, resources and economic development activities in the province with support from the private sector.
However, this has not been the case.
It has been either the people themselves who commit their time and resources to establish such basic services and development or through the support and assistance from big companies like NBPOL, Hargy and other companies including NGO agencies.
The Government has failed to create economic opportunities for the people.
But its recent recognition and commitment to develop some of these neglected services will lessen the burden on the private sector.
There is no doubt the WNB’s economy will continue to grow, especially with the prospect of mineral exploration.
However, the people continue to have limited accessibility to urban centres and markets to sell their produce.
The main limitation is due to either no road accessibility or the road condition is terrible.
It is good that the New Britain Highway has been recognised as a national highway.
But does the Government have any plan to link WNB with ENB by road?
There is a great potential for New Britain and, PNG as a whole, to grow further.
There are hundreds of communities between the two provinces who are still struggling and longing for Government services and easy access to major economic centres.
They have been neglected and deprived of their rights for access to basic services such as education and health for a long time.
The governors of the two provinces should also push the Government for more economic activities to take place and not just to rely on the private sector.