The National- Wednesday, January 26, 2011
By JEFFREY ELAPA
DEPUTY Opposition Leader and Lae MP Bart Philemon has called on the Minister for Public Enterprise Arthur Somare to address the power interruptions in Lae city.
Philemon, who returned from the electorate, said the continuous blackouts that last for hours were outrageous and bad for consumers and the manufacturing industry in Lae.
He said the minister should come out from his comfort zone and deliver the service to the people.
“I raised the issue 12 months ago and the minister assured me of 12 new generators for Taraka but they are getting worse.
“You can’t even use a coffee maker, radio, TV and many other electrical appliances like washing machines and fridges as they are likely to be blown up because of power fluctuation,” he said.
Philemon said something had to be done immediately by the minister because Lae could not function and could not manufacture chemicals, building materials, produce chicken, fish and other industrial and domestic materials at present at its factories.
“It’s a terrible situation and things were operating below par, well below standard,” he said.
“The minister should now hear the plea of the people of Lae and do something about it.”
Philemon said that the Yonki hydro power station was deteriorating as it was built in the 1960s.
He said more than a hydro power technology was needed so that effective and reliable power supply was provided.
He said more than K4 billion had been budgeted in the 2011 development budget while the government used at its disposal K59.4 billion within the last eight years, and that was about 51% of a total budget of K116 billion since independence.
“This huge sum of money should surely address such situation for the benefit of our people and the country.”