The National,Tuesday17 January 2012
by JAMES APA GUMUNO
CONTINOUS rainfall in Western Highlands, Jiwaka and parts of Chimbu has damaged gardens, houses and the Highlands Highway.
The rainy season, which started last December, is continuing unabated and causing widespread damage.
Road users were concerned about the deteriorating section of the road caused by floods and rain creating crater-like potholes.
The Nend, Wandi, Guwo, Barawaghi, Kagma-Mindima and Kond sections of the road in Chimbu have gone worse.
The Kuli Gap, Aviamp, Kawi, Kudjip road junction, and Wurup section of the road in the North and South Waghi electorates of Jiwaka have been severely affected as well.
A 15-seater bus PMV driver from Banz John Kapil said yesterday big “swimming pools” were seen in the middle of the road at Aviamp.
Kapil, who claimed to speak on behalf of other PMV owners and drivers, said the authorities were ignoring the crater-like potholes.
He said small buses often got bogged down after water entered the engines.
He called on the Works Department provincial authorities to have proper drainage for the small creek running on the side of the road at Aviamp.
Kapil said if they ceased operations, the travelling public would be affected.
He said they took a big risk and spent money to keep their buses running on the road and provide service to people.
Another driver Peter Uvanis, from Waghi Bridge, shared his views.
He said given the multi-billion liquefied natural gas projects in Hela, oil and gold mining in Southern Highlands and Enga respectively, the government must give priority to the upkeep of the Highlands Highway and other linking roads.