The Mineral Resources Development Company (MRDC) has today (7 March 2018) begun airlifting much needed relief supplies into Kutubu. Moran and Hides, the regions worst hit by the 7.6 magnitude earthquake which struck last Monday.


MRDC Kini Renagi and William Baratia with PRM Chairman Pape Punga at Homa during the relief operations.

MRDC joins stakeholder partners Oil Search and Exxon Mobil, as well as other Non-Government Organisations (NGO) who had begun sending in aid for people in their project areas over the weekend.

A team was sent in to assess the damage and destruction immediately after the quake hit in the project areas. The finding of these reports were put forward to the respective landowner company boards to approve a budget to go towards relief efforts.

Today’s airlifted supplies include dry foods, water, and tents to help locals who are currently living in makeshift shelters. With food gardens and fresh water sources destroyed from landslips, many are hungry.

A medical team from the Pacific International Hospital and volunteer doctors will also be sent in this week to the impacted areas to assist medical crews already on the ground to treat the injured and evacuate if need be.

Many of those injured have not been able to get medical attention since the earthquake as road links have been cut off in several sections of the access roads into Moro and the nearest rural hospital in Pimaga.

MRDC managing Director Augustine Mano said MRDC is working around the clock to assist in the relief efforts.

He expressed sadness upon visiting the sites himself last week and from seeing the detailed reports provided to him by his officers.

“Our people have been badly hit and we share in their fear and grief during this time. We have not forgotten them”.

“Relief supply coordination teams are in Moro, Kutubu, from there, helicopters will be utilised to distribute the supplies into the affected areas”, said Mano.

MRDC will be coordinating all its relief efforts from Port Moresby and Mt Hagen into Moro, with Oil Search offering Moro as an operations base for all relief efforts.

“This disaster is huge, our people have great severely affected, they are suffering so it is important that all of us, stakeholder agencies and government work together to help them in any way we can”. Said Mano.

MRDC has budgeted close to K8.5 million towards relief operations in the coming weeks.

Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by this devastating earthquake.