Traditional singsing and the beating of drums filled the air as locals gathered in anticipation of the launching of the joint Simbu and Jiwaka provincial Kup airport development project.
The Highlands region greatly needs another airport that is strategically placed to ensure access by each district is made easier.
A high-level ministerial delegation, led by National Planning Minister Richard Maru, who was accompanied by Civil Aviation Minister, Lekwa Gure, were met with a jubilant Kup and Jiwaka welcome.
When addressing the people, Minister Maru said a feasibility study, worth K10 million, had already been carried out and the report has been with the National Airports Corporation for a year now.
“When I was made aware of the report, mi disaid lo disla yia lo putim K2.5 million lo badjet blo nesenel Gavman,” Maru stated.
“Stadi blo Simbu em ol praivet man wokim. Gavman regulatory authority nid lo kam na wokim asesmen blo ol yet.”
The Minister said though a commitment has been made, it is subject to the assessment of technical experts.
After the July 17th launching, the next step is to ensure the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, or CASA, visits Kup station.
“Em bai min olsem memba na pipol i mas redi lo welkamim ol, risivim ol na sapotim ol.
“Epot i no liklik invesmen, yupla mas save. Yu la bildim wanpla teminol em bai kostim yu between K50 and K100 million. That yupla ol Simbu lidas, Jiwaka lidas mas andasten. By the time you talk about the runway, in a place like this, you’re talking about hundreds of millions.”
The Minister pointed out that all the airports in PNG were built years ago by foreigners, including the currently closed Kundiawa airport.