The National, Tuesday August 07th, 2012
By DAVID WAPAR
M’BUKE Island in Manus celebrated the successful completion of a two-year food security scheme called the M’Buke Island Improved Agricultural Technologies Project.
Funded by the Papua New Guinea Sustainable Development Program Ltd (PNGSDP) at a cost of K180,000, the project collaborated with the National Agriculture Research Institute (NARI) in introducing recommended crop varieties such as drought-tolerant yams, sweet potatoes, cassava and bananas.
It involved new methods in sustainable agriculture and food processing for the islanders.
Polangau Kusunan, an M’Buke chief, thanked the partners concerned for their effort as climate change was having a drastic effect on their livelihood.
Councillor John Potokos described the project as the beginning of an era and urged people to spread the information to enhance food security.
“In times of disaster, M’Buke will be the first to be hit. Climate change is at our doorstep. The sea may rise, but it won’t affect our stomach,” he said.
James Ernest of NARI, said the project was one of four funded by PNGSDP and implemented by NARI.
They included South Fly district of Western, Milne Bay and Northern provinces.
He said the objective of the project was to address food security and good nutrition, as healthy food contributed to a healthy family and a healthy nation.
“This is a result of two years of hard work by the M’Buke community and the commitment towards making the project a success,” Ernest said.
The project has had a positive impact on people.