PNG’s national broadcaster units catch fire, two children die

Two children died in a blaze at Papua New Guinea’s National Broadcasting Corporation in Boroko, a suburb of Port Moresby, the capital, on Friday, August 27.

The fire gutted two units of a four-unit property of the public broadcaster in Tanatana Street.

According to the broadcaster’s staff and families who reside in the compound, the fire started from one of the rooms on the ground level at about 2 pm.

Two small children, whose father is a senior archivist with the PNG’s oldest radio station, were trapped inside. Firefighters tried to put out the fire but could not save the children.

The water used to control the fire damaged the other two units of the building.

Staff have blamed the management for negligence over the rundown building.

NBC Managing Director Kora Nou said: “NBC’s immediate concern and care is for the eight families affected.  We provided cash to all of them to keep them going for the weekend until we assess the situation more this week. NBC will meet all funeral expenses, including taking the remains of the two kids to their final resting place later this week. We will ask the affected families to temporarily move in with other NBC staff or relatives in NCD. We have also started the process of building new accommodation for the affected staff on existing NBC land. We have sourced quotations for prefabricated houses and will start clearing land this week.”

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