PNG Prime Minister Marape visits Saki landslide disaster site

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Saki landslide
Emergency workers retrieve bodies from the Saki landslide disaster in Papua New Guinea. Image: PNG Bulletin/Central Provincial Govt

Asia Pacific Report newsdesk

Papua New Guinea’s Prime Minister James Marape has visited Goilala’s remote Saki village near Tolukuma gold mine in the Goilala district of Central Province to see the extent of the damage caused by the landslide, reports the PNG Post-Courier.

Fifteen people, including three children, are feared dead in this devastating natural disaster which occurred late last month.

The people were asleep in a long house near an alluvial mine site where they had been panning for gold, when the landslide, dragging trees and logs with it, buried the hut.

Prime Minister Marape flew to the disaster site yesterday by a chartered helicopter. He was  accompanied by the member for Goilala William Samb and media representatives.

Harlyne Joku of PNG Bulletin reports that three children were among the 15 people buried alive.

Acting Provincial Administrator Francis Koaba confirmed this in the latest update.

Koaba said 12 dead bodies had been retrieved while three were unaccounted for.

Koaba’s team from the Central Disaster Office have been hard at work excavating and retrieving bodies since flying to Saki on Wednesday last week.

“Yesterday we repatriated three bodies to their respective villages in Sopu and Kone,” he said.

“Today we delivered some relief supplies to the site and did one repatriation to Mondo. We also delivered more food supplies to people on site.”

This report republished with permission.

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