23 May 2008

Work on key PNG Highlands road disrupted by demands from landowners

1:40 pm on 23 May 2008

The Okuk Highway rehabilitation project in Papua New Guinea has been shelved following hefty compensation demands from landowners.

The PNG Government is building a deviation after a landslide blocked the key road in the Highlands a month ago.

The road is now passable again but the landslide had earlier blocked travel into much of the Highlands region, causing fuel and food shortages.

The Post Courier newspaper reports that landowners from Wara Kagul are demanding millions of dollars from the Works Department before work on the alternative highway can proceed.

This has forced the contractors to stop work.

Talks between the landowners and the Government are taking place.