For centuries Mt Bosavi in Nipa-Kutubu electorate of the Southern Highlands Province has been dormant. However, since the major earthquake 11 days ago and the continuous aftershocks since, villagers are fleeing from the slopes of the mountain to seek shelter in the valleys below.
Former PNG basketball representative player Colin Pine speaking from Kutubu said Mt Bosavi was showing signs of erupting and villages around the mountain were living in fear it could blow anytime.
“Mt Bosavi is showing signs of a volcano and as we speak we are seeing smoke building up at the top of the mountain. We had never seen Mt Bosavi as a volcanic mountain but now it’s showing signs,” Pine told the Courier-Post newspaper.
Authorities have denounced the rumours saying: “This is false information. Scientists have been helicoptered in to view and study the volcano. They have declared that there is no danger from an eruption and have been to speak to people in the villages.
“However, due to rumours on social media, many are fleeing their villages on the mountain and are going to the valleys away from the mountain. This is a bad choice.
“First, there is a great danger of flooding in the valleys right now. Secondly, helicopters are bringing food, water and medical aid to the villages and if you leave the villages, they won’t be able to find you. Aid agencies are requesting that you stay near your village.” - PNC