No water, hospital closes

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THE Goroka Hospital has stopped serving the public following the shut-down of the town’s water supply by disgruntled landowners.
Eastern Highlands health authority chief executive officer Dr Joseph Apa confirmed the closure of the hospital yesterday.
He said the hospital would attend to emergency cases only but the general clinical service was closed.
Critically-ill patients and those needing operation were referred to the Kundiawa Sir Joseph Nombri Memorial Hospital in Chimbu and Angau Memorial Hospital in Lae.
Dr Apa said some cases were referred to the Asaro Health Centre and some staff from the Goroka hospital would be engaged to provide clinical services at Asaro.
He said the sick in nearby districts should not go to Goroka hospital but to the nearest district health centre.
“After almost a week of no water flowing into the hospital, it is very difficult to deliver babies at the labour ward, perform operations, cleaning and giving medication to patients,” he said.
“We are giving medicines supplied to patients who require them and encourage them to return home, but this cannot go on forever,” Dr Apa said.
He urged the disgruntled Komiufa landowners to re-open the water supply for the good of the hospital and patients.
Dr Apa said important educational and public institutions in Goroka were faced with water crisis since Wednesday.
Meanwhile schools that relied on the town’s water supply had also scaled down hours with children being sent home at midday since last week. Police intervened on Saturday and arrested some Komiufa landowners.
They are being interrogated at the Goroka police station.
Eastern Highlands police commander Supt David Seine Jnr did not respond to calls and text messages for comment.
The Komiufa Resource Development Association has given Goroka development authority seven days to release K1 million the Government had given to them for the land occupied by the Goroka town water supply.


  • It’s about time Government needs to listen to the local landowners. It’s their right to claim for their land payment.
    The continuous ignorant would may cause such destruction to the communities.

    Please pay them (landowners).

  • Water is essential to every humankind in this universe. Everybody needs water to survive and without water, there is no life. So the landowners in Goroka must release the flow of water supply regardless of whatever the issues with the fundings. This is a critical issue confronting the general population in Goroka. Most importantly it affects the patient and students in Goroka and this no good. The authorities who are responsible to this issue must restore the normalcy immediately as soon as possible.

  • This issue with water has been ongoing for countless times, it not something new. Does the management of Goroka Hospital have an emergency plan in place to address such in future, such as installing additional water tanks (southern cross) to collect water? It is quite simple and you don’t need rocket science to work it out.

  • From my personal view, landowners should took National or Provincial Government or responsible authorities to Court instead of stopping water supply leaving innocents people suffering the consequences of the only few self interested people…

  • Please don’t call them Land Owners, call them what they are, lazy, useless, unproductive, destructive Land Parasites.
    My Tribe is the Sky Owners. We demand these Land Parasites compensate us for the Rain that falls on the ground they are squatting on and the our Air they are breathing.
    If Goroko has to pay them, then don’t let any one of those parasites enter Goroko Town for any purpose until they pay to enter

  • A district such as Kainantu has PNG Water Board managing Water supply and also in every provinces of our beautiful country, Goroka town water supply had been and always managed by Goroka town urban authority which supplies contaminated water that carries typhoid which infected people in the town . Therefore, I suggest the provincial Government should remove this water management role from Goroka town urban Authority and engage PNG Water Board to manage water supply in Goroka town.

  • Friend why cant such institution’s like Hospitals, clinic and aid posts be exempted from paying water bills. Our sick patients need water at all costs to survive. Can the national, Provincial and District Governments consider this idea. Ofcourse many sick people in hospital are the landowners themselves or am I wrong ?

  • Everyone must be aware that water is the source of live,without water there would be no live on planet earth,therefore the government should appreciated and paying what is requested to let the service flow as people are currently suffering.

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