By ISAAC NICHOLAS
HELA Transitional Authority chairman James Marape has recommended the HTA embrace the Hela long-term development plan to lock in gas revenue to realise the proposed Hela province’s development aspirations, The National reports.
Marape said the LNG revenue must be locked in for development in line with the long-term plans and not controlled by politicians.
He said the next six months would be critical as HTA’s task was to have nationwide consultations with its people and stakeholders including the elite Hela working class, students, youths, churches, women and leaders on the long-term plan for Hela province.
The chairman of HTA and member for Tari-Pori said this when announcing that the HTA had passed a K23 million budget to ensure infrastructures were in place for a full provincial status for Hela province by 2012.
The K23 million was allocated by the national government in this year’s budget for physical infrastructure and public service structure in preparation for the provincial status.
Marape said the appropriation was to put in place structures for a new province by 2012 and to ensure that the province gets maximum benefit from the LNG project and not squandering the wealth created from their gas.
The break-up included K1 million to each for office rehabilitation in each of the three district offices, K200, 000 each to the 16 local level governments (LLGs) for the setting up of LLG assemblies, K250, 000 for a youth centre in Tari, K250, 000 to the Hela council of churches, K250, 000 to the council of women and K3 million for the construction of the HTA office complex in Tari.