KIKORI MP and Labour and Industrial Relations Minister Mark Maipakai has called on the National Government to fast-track the construction of alternative road links to connect the various parts of the country.
Mr Maipakai said many problems such as mudslides and land compensation demands affected business houses and the public.
He said the demand for the construction of the alternative routes was a must which included the National Executive Council’s approval of roads from Baiyer River to Madang, Tari to Kikori, Simberigi (Gobe) to Kikori and Ialibu to Kopi.
“The construction of the Simberigi to Kikori road is already at an advanced stage and all that needs now, like other alternative routes, is for the Government or the Works Department to put in place additional funding to speed work to complete the projects,” he said.
Mr Maipakai also wanted the Government to seriously look into the development of an alternative port at Paia Inlet in Kikori.
“This proposed port can be an alternative wharf to service not only the Southern region but also the Highlands provinces of Enga, Southern Highlands, Western Highlands, Eastern Highlands and Simbu.
“Kikori already has enough economic justification and the proposed wharf should be supported.
“Take for instance, forestry or logging provides about US$10 million annually for PNG, as well as oil and gas coming on board signalling major economic activities in the district,” he said.