K500, 000 COUNTER-FUNDING FOR COFFEE BRIDGE

Productive Public- Private Partnership is the way forward in providing effective service delivery to the rural populace in any development project.

Unggai-Bena District Administrator Jonathan Resis said this when presenting a cheque of K500, 000 counter funding on behalf of  Member Hon. Benny Allan to the Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC) on Thursday, April 9 2020.

CIC will put in additional K500, 000 to see the construction of this vital bridge in the Magitu area in the Unggai- Bena District.

CIC Chief Executive Officer Charles Dambui acknowledged the support of the Unggai- Bena Member Hon. Benny Allan, and his administration team for supporting coffee development in the district.

He urged other District Development Authorities to enter into such partnerships on kina for kina basis for the benefit to rehabilitate coffee economic roads  which will also provide for other socioeconomic  services for the people to access.

CIC-PPAP Manager Potaisa Hombunaka highlighted that farmers already know what their immediate needs are. The rural coffee farmers want their roads to be rehabilitated so they will access the market easily hence increased price. He mentioned that Obura Wanenara DDA is the first who partnered with CIC-PPAP to rehabilitate the Barabundora Junction to Nombia road. Okapa DDA had contracted a local company to rehabilitate the Ewande Junction to 2mile where CIC-PPAP is nearing rehabilitation of the 12.89 km road from 2mile to Wararutz near Porosa. Hence he fully supports the CEO’s call for other DDA to partner with CIC on kina on kina basis to rehabilitate coffee economic roads.

“They only need good roads and the rest will fall in line,” Mr Hombunaka said.

General Manager for Industry Operations Steven Tumae said once the bridge is completed, it would serve coffee farmers and communities in Magitu, Sogopehu, Katagu, Lahame, Hofaga, Sakanuga, Bagahinupa, Sekagu,  Sozugu in the Lower Bena LLG. “We need such partnership to deliver infrastructure services to our rural people.”

According to CIC- PPAP Senior Engineer Eric Abba, it will take about 4-6 weeks to bring the bridge to Lae from United Kingdom and then from Lae up to Magitu.

He added the road to benefit some 30,0000 people from Ward 4 and 5 of Lower Bena LLG has been scoped from Sogopegu to Hofaga and is 5km in length. The 36 metre Magitu bridge is part of the 5km access road from Sogopegu to Hofaga.

The road is located about 16km from Goroka town.

Patrol grading is expected to be carried out before the bridge components reaches Magitu. While that is being done, the tender process would be facilitated between April and July. By August, the bridge would be laid down, and construction would begin around September- October 2020.