WATER users in Lae currently owe the PNG Waterboard (PNGWB) a massive K10 million in unpaid bills.
Despite the large outstanding charges, the company’s board of directors approved the funding in 2010 for rehabilitation and enhancement of the Lae water supply system equivalent to the same tune.
“Lae city consumers currently owe K10 million in outstanding bills, they should pay up their bills to help Waterboard improve and maintain service,” an irate deputy managing director Amo Mark said.
He was responding to queries on low pressures in some areas, including University of Technology, Bumayong and Tent City.
“Water was restored to normal last Tuesday. We are producing water, it may be low but consumers are getting water-some places like parts of Port Moresby do not get water for days,” Mr Mark said.
He said the Waterboard was doing all it could to improve service and there were major works planned for this year.
“But it takes time to procure the materials from overseas suppliers and get approvals as Waterboard, like other entities, must adhere to the Public Finance Management Act.
“I appeal to residents not to damage water mains as it contributes to low pressure.”
This month, the Waterboard spent nearly K500,000 to buy new motors for the bore pumps to rehabilitate those that had broken down, causing havoc in water
Mr Mark also clarified news reports that the Waterboard would be commissioning water bore pumps within the University of Technology.
The reports implied that the lack of water had forced the university administration to postpone student registration and the start of the academic year by two weeks.
“We had advised Unitech on Sunday, Feb 7, that water would be restored by Feb 9, which it was, but it was Unitech administration’s own decision to postpone classes for two weeks,” he said.
Mr Mark appealed to water users to pay up their outstanding bills so that service could be maintained and enhanced, reassuring that major works were being undertaken to improve water services to Lae.