TONGA TO SEND EMERGENCY WATER PUMPS TO HA‘APAI ISLANDS

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NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (October 19, 1998 - PACNEWS/Amy)---The Tongan government is preparing to send four portable diesel pumps to the Ha‘apai Islands Group to deliver water to the northern islands' drought stricken residents.

The pumps will be used to transfer water from delivery boats to containers for each household.

The National Disaster Relief Committee, in collaboration with the Fire Brigade, is pursuing purchase of the pumps from Australian and New Zealand vendors. The estimated cost will be about 27,000 pa‘anga (US$ 15,840).

The people on Ha‘apai's five islands are in desperate need of potable water. A defense force boat with an emergency supply now is on its way to the islands.

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