By MALUM NALU
Daru’s ongoing water and sewerage problems, which have crippled business for many years, are set to be a thing of the past when the K52 million Daru water and sewerage project funded by PNG Sustainable Development Program (PNGSDP) is completed next April, The National reports.
Under the water agreement signed in April this year, PNGSDP will provide funding of K52 million to improve water and sewerage systems while Water PNG, which owns the systems, will provide the technical support for the project.
|Project signboard in Daru.-Nationalpic by MALUM NALU|
The project will take 12 months to complete from signing of the agreement.
The problem came to a head in November 2010 when 13 people died and more than 60 were admitted to hospital following a cholera outbreak,
The island is currently over-populated with more than 20,000 people, including public servants, who depend entirely on water piped from the mainland.
A few people and institutions, though, depend on well water and rain water.
“The current Daru water supply system is old, has become unreliable and is no longer capable of supplying the needs of the increasing population,” according to the PNGSDP.
“As well, there is no reticulated sewerage system on the island, which poses serious health risks for the island’s population.
“The proposed development of a port at Daru and associated industrial development will impose added pressure on the existing infrastructure and services in the town.
“PNGSDP has approved K52 million to rehabilitate the existing water supply and to build a reticulated sewerage system.”
Meanwhile, a tertiary sewerage treatment facility will be constructed at Tawo’o Point to replace the current system involving dumping of raw sewerage into the sea at Tawo’o Point.
This facility is expected to cost around K20 million and expected to be completed by end of 2012.