The National -Friday, October 21st 2011
ROAD infrastructure upgrading and maintenance is crucial in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, Communication and Information Minister and Central Bougainville MP Jimmy Miringtoro says. He said while the education and health sectors remained his top priorities, he was aware of the importance of a good road network in his Central Bougainville electorate, particularly the 175km main highway from Buka to Arawa on the mainland. He said maintaining proper feeder roads and bridges was crucial to the people. He said he had allocated funds for the following road upgrading projects in his electorate: l Paruparu Road (K2.4 million); l Kakarapaia Road K800,000; l Orami Road K300,000; and, l Koianu Road K900,000. Miringtoro said he allocated K800,000 for the upgrading of the Sipuru Road in the Kongara area. “The road upgrading and maintenance should complement the 15 bridges that are being built along the main highway with the assistance of the Japanese government,” he said. Miringtoro said when the bridges were completed and commissioned, his people would no longer spend sleepless nights on the sides of the highway because of flooded and impassable rivers. “My JDP&BPC and I have tried to make the best decisions to put this limited money into right use. “For example, last year my JDP&BPC made a decision to assist the Arawa High School with K1 million for its senior science laboratory and administration block,” Miringtoro said. He said other projects approved by the JDP&BPC and completed included: l K800,000 to build a Kieta district office at Toniva; l K600,000 for capacity-building in the Panguna district; l K1.1 million for Manetai and Wakunai health centres; l K200,000 for PNG Power; and l K500,000 for Arawa Airstrip upgrading.