By PAUL MINGA
A DRIED bamboo flare will be a thing of the past for every North Waghi household.
The practice of constantly replacing torch batteries and kerosene lamps will be no more for. Mobile phone owners will be no more running around as mad men and women trying to get to the nearest power point to have their phones charged.
It is hooray at last. Thank you Member for North Waghi Dr Fabian Pok for the solar panel set rollout programme for the entire North Waghi electorate. It is great news and a relief for the people from as far as Kimil to those sharing the border with Chimbu’s Kerowagi electorate.
Before I continue one about the subject matter and what the MP has done in his tenure, let me give a brief run down of political leaders who represented North Waghi before or since the Legislative House of Assembly up to the present with Dr Fabian Pok himself as the sitting North Waghi MP. The first ever member was Kaibelt Diriye, who also represented the people of Jimi and Waghi in the Legislative House of Assembly.
After that the Electoral Boundaries Commission divided that large electorate into three districts; Jimi, North Waghi and Anglimp-South Waghi with their own parliamentary representatives. As for the electorate of North Waghi MPs who had been elected into office after Kaibelt Diriye were Talu Bolt, William Wii, Imbal Aipe, Michael Maskal and Benjamin Mul. William Wii served two terms while the current MP Dr Fabian Pok is now the longest serving MP with serving his third term in office.
Pok first got elected into office as the North Waghi MP in the 1997 national election and served a single term from 1997-2002 in which he lost the seat to Michael Maskal in 2002 general election.
During his term in office from 1997 – 2002 Pok initiated several impact projects that are as landmarks to this day. These are the Singirok Barracks of the PNGDF Engineering Battalion base at Kerowil, the district headquarter office complex building, electricity main supply connection from Tolu to Nondugul, several telephone satellite installations in and around Banz and Nondugul area including the destroyed Dumbola Health Center and other impact projects.
In the midst of political turmoil he lost his seat in 2002 to Benjamin Mul who at times known as “Action Ngalye”. However, Pok didn’t give up hope easily and he made a comeback into office for a second time in a successful election victory in 2012 general election.
During his second term in office Pok embarked on another vital project code named “Operation North Waghi Rausim Kunai” where 10 roofing iron sheets were distributed to each family in the electorate to build a decent home for themselves. The intention of Pok distributing coloured (red) roofing iron to every North Waghi family was to create a society of red roof for an amazing and sparkling impressive aerial view when flying over North Waghi.
Besides the aerial view impression his whole and prime intention was to end his people headache of leaking kunai roof for the entire 80, 000 North Waghi population who for ages have been dreaming for a semi-permanent home. By the way, to aid and enable them to erect their permanent or semi-permanent home without much trouble Pok distributed a portable Lucas sawmill machine to every smaller ethnic sub clan in the electorate to have wood sawn into timbers for their house setup. With the distribution of 10 roofing iron sheets for every family and a portable sawmill machine for every ethnic sub clan was as something offered on a golden plate. In fact Pok has done much for his electorate and people.
As other 110 MPs are trying their best to deliver something for their province and constituent for a change and benefit of the province or people Dr Pok is doing likewise for his North Waghi electorate and people. With about a year remaining for this parliament term Dr Pok is setting his eyes on several projects as the final countdown. Two projects that were recently launched and announced in the electorate by Dr Pok are K2:5 million school fee assistance for North Waghi students attending elementary to university for this year – 2021 school academic year.
The second impact project that was rolled out- targetting every household in the entire electorate from Kimil to Gar boarder is the solar panel set distribution. Distribution already started at Kuiona One and Two LLG ward for the Bambilnge tribe a week ago. In the near future every household in every LLG ward for the other tribal group will get their share of solar panel set supplies.
Dr Pok sees solar panel set distribution for every household as a cheapest form of power supply that would be operated at no cost and as more convenient. The Bambilnge sub clans of Tunskup, Komnompal and Takipkanem were as first lot of people to receive their share of solar panel set accessories as panels, batteries, inverters and regulators. The solar panel set rollout program will follow suit in due course for other parts of the electorate.
• Paul Minga is a freelance writer.