Papua New Guinea drought could be worst in decades: PM
Papua New Guinea’s government said Monday it had sent food and water to drought and frost-hit regions, as it warned a current dry spell could be the worst in decades.
Prime Minister Peter
O’Neill said the poverty-stricken Pacific nation, where many are dependent on subsistence agriculture, should prepare for conditions to deteriorate.
“This drought has the potential to be worse than 1997 and 1998,” he said in a statement, referring to a devastating period in which some 500 people are thought to have died from diseases spawned by a prolonged drought.
O’Neill said the government was preparing for “the possibility of an extended drought with related frost, made worse due to the affects of climate change”.
“Currently 1,842,000 people have been affected by this extreme weather, of which 1,303,000 are classed as being in the most at risk, category 4, drought,” he said.