PM AND OPPOSITION LEADER VISITED AFFECTED AREAS

The Gold Ridge bridged was damaged by the recent floods. Photo credit: OPMC.

The Gold Ridge bridged was damaged by the recent floods. Photo credit: OPMC.

Prime Minister Gordon Darcy Lilo and Opposition Leader Dr Derek Sikua have visited the Guadalcanal Plains and the Gold Ridge Mine site.

A government statement today confirms yesterday’s visit was to witness the scale and impact of the recent rain and floods on Guadalcanal.

The Guadalcanal Plains and the interior Gold Ridge area are important regions that host two of the country’s major companies namely: the Guadalcanal Plains Palm Oil Limited, GPPOL, and Gold Ridge.

In the plains, the scale of the disaster has affected most farming communities including GPPOL’s newly planted oil palm trees which were flattened by the floods at some estates near the Ngalibiu River.

At Gold ridge, the two leaders visited the tailings dam which has attracted major concerns over the risk that it poses to downstream communities in severe rainy seasons.

SIBC news is aware, some victims of last week’s disaster in the Guadalcanal Plains and Gold Ridge area are still waiting for relief assistance more than a week after the flood.

Meanwhile, the statement says Prime Minister Lilo was satisfied with what he saw after the visit and has assured the nation he will make every effort to ensure that short-term humanitarian responses will be strengthened to help people restart their lives, while government authorities work to restore infrastructure in the long term.

Opposition Leader, Dr Sikua while thanking Prime Minster Lilo for his courage to visit the plains, hopes the Prime Minster and his government will respond quickly to people’s immediate needs while planning for the long-term reconstruction process continues.

SIBC News understands Prime Minister Lilo recently flew over the flood affected areas of Honiara and Guadalcanal to view the impact from the air immediately after the recent flash flood.

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