East Sepik Disaster Appeal Commences in NCD

Tuesday 16 April 2024

Mrs Janet Sengi from the Jubilee Catholic Secondary School with the students handed over their donations to Chairman for ‘Wantok blo Sepik’ Mr John Wesley Gonjuan and a committee member Mr Terence Moka to support the 2024 Sepik Disaster Appeal. The presentation was done at the Jubilee Catholic Secondary School in Port Moresby.

Over 70 villages along the Sepik River have been affected by  the flood and the recent earthquake that occurred in the East Sepik Province at a depth of about 35km (20 miles) east- northeast of Ambunti.

The earthquake with a magnitude of 6.9 on the Richter Scale took place in the early morning on the 24 March 2024 with moderate to strong shaking felt in areas near the epicenter and lighter shaking was likely felt in other parts of northern Papua New Guinea.

Prime Minister Hon. James Marape and his wife Mrs Rachael Marape flew by helicopter to Angoram and Pagwi, the district headquarter of Wosera- Gawi on Good Friday and used the opportunity to make an aerial assessment of the damages.

Prime Minister Marape conveyed his sympathies to the victims and stated that K2 million is being released by the National Treasury for immediate relief assistance.

 In the meantime, the  East Sepik Provincial Government  is finalizing its report on the impact of the disaster after which the National Government will step in with full funding for restorative efforts.

Over K10 million in total is being distributed to all districts and local level government areas affected.

“The break down is as follows: ESPG K2 million, Wosera-Gawi K2 million, Angoram K2 million, Ambunti Drekikier K1 million, Yangoru Saussia K1 million, Wewak DDA K1 million, Maprik Urban LLG K500 000, Gawi LLG K500 000, Vanimo DDA K1 million and Nuku DDA K1 million”.

PM Marape urged all Sepik Members of Parliament and the provincial government to work together with the National Government to address this matter.

He called on the ESP leaders to  put  all  their differences aside and recognize the need of their  people in the affected areas.

“Government must go to the people at the earliest, without delay. Local level governments, provincial governments and district development authorities are working hands of the National Government on the ground, so we will empower them to assist our people with immediate relief and care as well as next phase of restoration and development.”

As part of the next phase of restoration and development, a group of ESP  elites  in Port Moresby, known as  Wantok blong Sepik,  are  leading   the 2024 Sepik Disaster Appeal in the city

Chairman Mr John Wesley Gonjuan said that he believed there are many people of East Sepik out there with friends and families, and those who have experienced some sort of disasters affecting their respective areas, would understand how bad it was and the urge of need for basic things.

“ We are from Sepik and we cannot just sit back and expect others to assist but to do something to help and that was how we came up with the 2024 Sepik Disaster Appeal with five committee members, volunteers and people with good hearts who have come forward to support us.

“ There are locations we have set up for any donations in cash or kind and we appreciate all those who had come forward to support us so far.”

Members of the group have also  commended Garamut Food World and WaterFront for the use of Venue,  and also Bismark Shipping for  supporting this Appeal.

Donations in kind are expected to  be shipped to Wewak.

Wantok blong Sepik is working closely with the East Sepik Disaster Office and the Office of the Member for Wewak Hon. Stanley Muts Samban to ensure donations reach the affected people.

The group thanked the Government, the international partners, individuals and others, for their support during this time.

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