People on the fringe hurting


I AM haunted by the fact that thousands of people in some of the country’s remotest areas still inordinately long for development well past the 21st century.
In Southern Highlands, there are thousands of people living on the fringes of society, like at Wabisale, Wiru, Muluma and Kantobo, whose liberties in the modern society have been ignored for decades.
Interestingly in the colonial era, there were airstrips in each of the geographical areas that were served by the Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) which linked every person to goods and services.
Looking back, the rural airstrips have closed for lack of support and the people have slowly returned to the days of old, which is sad.
This highlights the inaction of successive governments over decades of lost generations.
However, there are fresh hopes brought about by the services improvement programme (SIP) through the decentralisation policy which can reconnect the government with the isolated people who are entitled to goods and services.
The O’Neill government is doing well by putting money into every district and province and it is now incumbent on every Member of Parliament (MP) and governor to facilitate the reconnection of goods and services with the lives of their people and communities.
In other parts of the country, for instance Jimi in Jiwaka, local MP Wake Goi is wasting no time subsidising airfares by up to 50 per cent to help reconnect his people to goods and services.
Clearly there are multiple reasons why the local MPs and governor of SHP should reconnect the people to goods and services by reopening airstrips and subsidising airfares.

Mike Haro
Lake Kutubu