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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, Feb. 1, 2008) – Papua New Guinea’s Lae Urban Local Level Government (LULLG) does not have proper equipment to maintain the roads.

[PIR editor’s note: Lae, capital of Morobe Province on the northern coast of mainland Papua New Guinea, is the country’s second largest city with a population of 120,000. The issue of poor road conditions has been the object of much concern in recent weeks.]

The council admitted its shortcomings in the Project Form-ulation Document (PFD) submitted to the Government in order for the funds earmarked for the Lae City road rehabilitation to be released.

The PFD highlighted this was one of the reasons why roads in the city were not maintained on a timely basis and left to deteriorate.

"This project may be required to assist in purchasing some basic capital equipment and machinery and after the project is completed, the equipment and machines would be left with the LULLG,’’ the PFD stated.

"In this way, the LULLG can use the capital equipment to maintain the roads in the future.’’

According to the document, equipment were vital for the project, however, most components of the job would be given to contractors to be carried out.

Raw materials needed for the project like road base and quarries may be extracted from certain sites to carry out the work on the city roads.

"Materials in Lae are bountiful. Two companies that are involved in preparing road base and quarries from the Bumbu River are Boinamo Enterprises Ltd and PNG Readymix Pty Ltd,’’ the document stated .

"They will be approached and arrangements will be done to extract materials for the roads.’’

On sustainability of the project, the PFD pointed out the project would be supported and sustained by the MPG and LULLG.

The project document stated the Lae Chamber of Commerce and Industry would also support the project with logistics and advice if required.

"The Morobe Provincial Government and the LULLG will also continue to provide annual maintenance funding in their annual budgets,’’ the PFD states.

"LULLG has engineers who will provide technical expertise such as engineering design and scope of work for the maintenance programs.

"This will sustain the Lae City road maintenance and rehabilitation project.’’

The PFD stated there would be regular meetings with the Project Management Committee to thrash out any issues arising from the project.

Land ownership issues are not expected to surface as all the roads in Lae are on state land.

"However, if there are other landowner issues, the MPA will handle the issues at first instance,’’ the document stated.

"In past experience where donor funded projects were initiated, the issues that were directly raised were in relation to employment for local landowners.

"The project will create job opportunities for local people. Landowners may be considered and they will be given opportunities to participate in sub-contracting and labour if they have the necessary know-how and expertise," the PFD stated.

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