9 Feb 2006

Urgent help needed for homeless in PNG after flooding in central province

7:08 pm on 9 February 2006

Help has been delayed to at least 12 thousand people left homeless from severe flooding in the central province of Papua New Guinea.

People are reported to be starving, houses are sinking, and coffins have been washed up by flood waters which officials say have been up to two metres high.

But aid to the people is being hampered because the central provincial disaster office is yet to complete a full report on the flooding.

Victor Aufe the research officer to the central provincial governor, says

relief is needed now.

"I'm just appealing to the provincial government if the administration can work on the report faster to have the relief supply delivered to the people at this point in time now because I'm pretty sure that the people are starving at this moment."

Mr Aufe says people are suffering in makeshift shelters on the Hiritano Highway - three kilometres of which is under water.