The National, Thursday November 7th, 2013
TEWAE-Siassi MP Mao Zeming is allocating K8.1 million from the district services improvement programme to buy a new vessel following the collapse of the Lutheran Shipping services.
He admitted that the Siassi islands, Sialum and Wasu no longer received government services because of the collapse of Lutheran Shipping.
“Lutheran Shipping is going down so we have already allocated K8.1 million from the 2013 DSIP for the electorate and we are buying a barge that will carry about 70 passengers and goods,” Zeming said.
“All government services have come to a stop. The boat will be here by the end of this year.”
However, a senior employee of Lutheran Shipping said it was still up and running.
He was responding to a report in The National yesterday stating that Lutheran Shipping no longer serviced Siassi, and that islanders were risking their lives on outboard motor-powered canoes known as mon, to cross the treacherous Vitiaz Strait to get basic services such as health and education.
The employee said that Lutheran Shipping continued to service other parts of the Tewae-Siassi electorate such as Wasu, Finschhafen, Manus, and the Wewak-Vanimo route.
The budget priorities committee decided to give the transport sector K8.1 million from the K10 million annual funding for this year.
“We have also awarded K30,000 each to all our aid posts in Siassi, Wasu and Sialum,” Zeming said..
“That will be rolled out as soon as the funds are available, as well as K50,000 to every community school in the district.
“We will start to buy building materials, books and medicine.”