Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Transportation Ministry distributed some essential aid to the victims of drought and extreme weather in Puncak Regency, Central Papua, according to the Ministry's Air Transportation Director General Kristi Endah Murni.

"We have distributed humanitarian aid in the forms of rice, instant noodle, mineral water, cooking oil, and eggs. Hopefully, this assistance will help our brothers who are suffering from the disasters," Murni noted in a statement received in Jakarta on Saturday (August 5).

She informed that the Ministry was collaborating with the Mozes Kilangin Airport Operator Unit (UPBU) in the process of aid distribution, adding that the aid, totaling 500 kilograms in weight, was transported using a plane to Agandugume District via Sinak Airport on Saturday.

"The affected district could only be accessed by a plane, so we, along with Mozes Kilangin UPBU, were coordinating with other ministries/agencies to hand in hand deliver the aid to the location with the available plane," she pointed out.

The drought occurs on account of frost, which led local residents' crops, such as taro and sweet potato, to dry out, fail to grow, and eventually rot.

Related news: Govt seeks alternative aid delivery to Central Papua drought victims

Considering the fact that the drought is a periodic disaster, the Ministry's Air Transportation Directorate General plans to take comprehensive handling measures, Murni stated.

The measures, she continued, will involve efforts to upgrade the infrastructures at the Sinak Airport, as a connecting airport in Central Papua's highland region, as well as at Agandugume Airfield, the airfield closest to the affected location.

In terms of flight operations, the directorate general will operate trial passenger flights twice in a week as well as trial cargo flights thrice in a week on the Timika-Sinak route, she added.

"Hopefully, this drought will end soon. We are also expecting other parties to participate in the efforts to deliver aid for the sake of relieving our brothers in Central Papua," she remarked.

Related news: BNPB delivers aid to drought-hit Puncak in Central Papua

Translator: Benardy F, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
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