29 Aug 2002

PNG island of Bougainville hit by lack of telecommunications

9:40 am on 29 August 2002

The Papua New Guinea island of Bougainville is being hit by a lack of essential services including telecommunications, electricity and banking services.

A spokesman for the Bougainville Business Asssociation, Thomas Raban, says there's been a complete power and communications blackout since Monday and many people have been without water.

And, he says the PNG Banking Corporation has been turning away customers because the computer system was down and there weren't any withdrawal or deposit slips available.

People travelling to Buka from central and south Bougainville say they've been disappointed because they 've had to return home without any money and haven't been able to use the phones.