29 Aug 2014

PNG capital's fringe communities shunted by economic growth

2:02 pm on 29 August 2014

A Catholic priest who runs a welfare NGO for women and children in Papua New Guinea's capital says the country's economic expansion is not having a positive effect on poor urban settlers.

Father John Glynn of WeCare says that some officials and leaders don't like to admit that poverty exists in PNG.

But he says that it's getting worse for many people, particularly those in the inner city squatter settlements, a number of which are being replaced to make way for roading or other new developments.

Fr John says the settlers are being moved to other areas on Moresby's fringe and that the government is saying they'll be better off there.

"But the thing is, if they want to get work, they have to come in to the city; if they want to get food, they have to come in to the city. Now they're faced with having to find bus fare, they didn't before. But now they have to find the fare, so their cost of living has gone through the roof. So any effects you can see at the moment are pretty negative."

020514. Photo RNZ. Papua New Guinea.

020514. Photo RNZ. Papua New Guinea. Photo: RNZ