B.C. residents are donating $500 each to help fund a doctor who’s been working to help a group of Angolans who’ve been stranded in Papua New Guinea since October, the province’s Minister of Finance says.
Dr. Andrew Loh, who’s also the director of a hospital in Langley, B.K., has been working with the Papua New Guinean government and health care workers to help them survive in the country for more than two weeks.
Loh said he’ll use the donations to cover travel expenses, but he can’t offer more details about what that includes just yet.
“I’m not going to be able to say exactly what the travel expenses are, or the amount of the donation,” Loh said in an interview.
He’s also concerned about the cost of his equipment and supplies.
When he first arrived in PNG in late September, the doctor had to get permission from the PNG government to work in the capital of the country.
But he says that was a little bit of a problem.
We had to leave all of our gear, and all of the equipment we had, so we were forced to come back in our car and drive to the airport.
And then the PNG army came and took it away from us, and it was in the desert.
So that’s when I kind of got frustrated, and I had to start making donations to the islanders.
I’m really excited about the work that we’re doing, and to do it with some of our own money, and then to donate the rest of the money to the government so that they can continue on,” he said.
PNG President Peter O’Neill has said he’s not aware of the situation.
The minister said he wants to make sure the islander doctors are well taken care of.
But he added that they’re in a precarious situation and he hopes they can help the people of Papua New Zealand and other countries who need their help.
[The government] can’t say for sure whether they will be able, because we have a very limited amount of money, he said, adding that he hopes the donation will help.