The National, Wednesday 29th May 2013
WORK has started on a new bypass road to link Mendi to Hela, avoiding the trouble spot on the Nipa section of the Highlands Highway.
Cabinet had approved this road link from Margarima to Mendi through the Lai Valley.
Hela Governor Anderson Agiru gave K4 million to a contractor to start work on the road and told the people to support the project.
He said the former provincial government had allocated funds for the roads but contractors left because of interruptions to their work by locals.
Finance and Education Minister James Marape said the people of Hela could now have an alternative route to travel from Mendi to Tari and back if there was trouble on the Nipa section of the Highlands Highway.
Works Minister Francis Awesa, who was at the launch, told the people that more than 200km of the highway would be rebuilt, and this included sections from Mendi to Tari, Mendi to Kandep and Porgera, Asaro to Bena bridge and Lae to Nadzab.
“We also include the Gulf-SHP highway along the corridors of the PNG LNG project area,” Awesa said.
Local leader Guluwa Wakinda thanked the government for funding the road project.