Saturday, July 12, 2014

1) Komnas HAM: Papua needs special regulation on elections

1) Komnas HAM: Papua needs  special regulation on elections 
2) ) Serevi's ode to freedom
3) West Papua at Melanesian arts festival
4) Pictures: Melanesian Festival of Arts and Culture

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1) Komnas HAM: Papua needs  special regulation on elections 
Nethy Dharma Somba, The Jakarta Post, Jayapura | Archipelago | Sat, July 12 2014, 11:35 AM
A special regulation on elections in Papua is necessary for dealing with recurrent pitfalls plaguing the region’s regional, legislative and presidential votes, a commissioner of the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) has said.

“Considering the recurring problems that happen in Yahukimo regency every time an election is held, the KPU [General Elections Commission] should have implemented a special regulation that is not applied nationally,” commissioner Nur Kholis said in Jayapura on Friday.

Nur was in Jayapura after monitoring the presidential vote in Yahukimo from Tuesday to Thursday.

He said weather had been the main challenge in the region as all the election materials had to be flown in.

According to national KPU regulation, election materials must be at all polling stations the day before voting.

“In practice, however, the logistics that were already taken to the airport had to be brought back to the KPUD [Regional General Elections Commission] office in Yahukimo’s capital of Dekai because the flight was canceled due to bad weather,” Nur said.

As a result, of the 51 districts in Yahukimo, only 30 could hold the election on schedule while the remaining 21 could not because the logistics had yet to reach polling stations.

Other problems, he added, included the readiness of the polling stations to conduct the election.

On voting day, some stations lacked polling booths and others were manned by police in lieu of election officials.

“The confidentiality requirement was not met,” Nur said, adding that in Dekai only four out of eight polling stations were able to conduct the election.

As an example of exceptions made for the area, Nur suggested that the ballots be printed in Papua and not in Jakarta, as the distribution took time.

He also said materials should be sent to polling stations earlier in Papua, given the geographic difficulties of the region.

Meanwhile, Papua KPUD chairman Adam Arisoi admitted that bad weather had been the main challenge in the distribution of election logistics in the province and that there were always polling stations that could not conduct elections on schedule.

“We cannot fight nature. That was the case during the presidential election. Heavy rain has been falling for all of June and into July,” Adam said.

Separately in Indramayu regency, West Java, polling station (TPS) 10 in Kalianyar subdistrict, Kerangkeng district, will hold a revote on Saturday as two voters were found to have cast two votes each.

West Java KPUD chairman Yayat Hidayat said that the two mothers did so because they were representing their children who were out of town on election day. Both the TPS officials and monitors let them do so.

The case, he said, was revealed when a third mother came to the TPS do the same but was refused by a new monitor who had replaced a previous one.

KPUD Indramayu chairman Mohammad Hadi Ramdan said that his office had prepared all the ballots and other necessities needed for Saturday’s revote.

“The security measures and time are the same as in the Wednesday election. We really hope people will come to cast their votes,” Hadi was quoted as saying by Antara.

Meanwhile, in Kediri, East Java, a number of cases of vote-buying and other forms of fraud have been reported, with one involving TPS officials.


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2) ) Serevi's ode to freedom
Ernest Heatley 
Sunday, July 13, 2014

The Black Brothers was a well-known West Papuan outfit from Jayapura led by Andy Ayamiseba. Their music, delivered in Tok Pisin, included influences from reggae and political elements inspired by the Black Power movement.
The group went into voluntary exile in Vanuatu in 1979, protesting Indonesian policies in West Papua and later moved to Papua New Guinea.
The Black Brothers have been labelled the most popular musical group in New Guinea during the 1980s with its reggae influences eventually impacting on various other musical groups in the country.
"I eventually started talking with them and they told me all about their struggles back home. I made a promise that I would write a song about their struggles."
Almost 20 years later, Serevi delivered on that promise.
"I wrote it straight after coming back from the Fest Napuan in Vanuatu in October last year. It was a bit late but I'm glad I did it," he said.
Serevi said he was glad to add to the growing voice of concern about the injustices being committed in West Papua.
While West Papuan musicians have long been familiar with the power of their traditional music as a platform for dissent and protest, he feels now is the time for musicians from other island nations to band similar support. The independence movement in the this region of Papua musicians have been inspired by artists like Arnold Ap, a folk music pioneer who was murdered in detention, and other legendary bands like Mambesak.
Rise Morning Star is a straight shooting song that doesn't mince the message that West Papuans want Indonesia to leave them alone.
"Get out" is the resounding theme of this original composition.
The reggae styled song has catchy snares and beats that many in reggae-mad Melanesian nations will appreciate.
It is already being used by a Port Villa-based Free West Papua advocacy group to help spread the message of freedom for people of this province.
Recorded at Procera Music Studios in Suva it includes vocals from Mere Koroi and Serevi's daughter Luisa, both Fiji National University students.
The song also had the guidance of Rosi Loa keyboardist Peter Chong and Marika Nakete of Serevi's band, on additional vocals.
The song has been supported by the Pacific Foundation for the Advancement of Women, who sponsored its launch and partially funded studio time which took around a month to record.
Recently a small delegation of West Papuans while on a stopover to the South Pacific Theological College showed their appreciation to Serevi for his song by visiting him at his home in Rewa, delivering a gift of food stuff and yaqona in a traditional Fijian-styled vakavinavinaka.
The musician said what inspired him to write it came down to "just doing the right thing".
"It's not just about being a Melanesian brother. It's about being human and it's the moral thing to do.
"The whole world has been too quiet about the atrocities that are happening over in West Papua."
Serevi said while word was, the song has been banned from airways in West Papua, friend and veteran local broadcaster Malakai Veisamasama had assured him that listeners were still able to tap into frequency from PNG radio stations airing the ode to freedom.
The veteran musician of 40 years believes that Pacific islanders should never overlook the struggles of the people of West Papua as they seek to shake off the shackles of an oppresive regime.
"We are going to the ends of the world to bring peace but there are Melanesia brothers in our own backyard who are crying out for help.
"I hope this song will inspire others to raise their voices and bring the issue closer to home," said Serevi.
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3) West Papua at Melanesian arts festival
By Jonas Cullwick
A large delegation from West Papua is participating in the 5th Melanesian Festival of Arts and Culture in Port Moresby, hosted by Papua New Guinea, which is in its second and final week this week. This was confirmed by Vanuatu Prime Minister Joe Natuman who was in Port Moresby to attend the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) Leaders Special Summit, which coincided with the opening of the festival of arts and culture.
Natuman told the Vanuatu media in a press conference after his return, West Papua’s presence at the Melanesian festival of arts and culture is part of a move by MSG to see increase in the participation of Melanesians in West Papua and Indonesia in MSG programs. He said it was expected to have West Papua also participate in the next Melanesian Games, which brings together athletes from MSG members.
Participants from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands, FLNKS in New Caledonia and Vanuatu and West Papua are at the 5th Melanesian Arts and Culture Festival in PNG.
At their retreat during the MSG Leaders Special Summit, the Leaders “endorsed that MSG encourage the strengthening and participation of Melanesians in Indonesia in MSG Activities and Programs.”
The MSG Leaders considered the Foreign Ministers Meeting Report on Arts and Culture and adopted the following key decisions: The Leaders noted that Solomon Islands will host the 6th Melanesian Arts and Culture Festival in 2018; The Leaders endorsed the revised resolutions of the Culture Symposium held during the 4th Melanesian Arts and Culture Festival in 2010 in New Caledonia; The Leaders agreed for members to consider working towards a common language to be the Official language of the people of Melanesia; and the Leaders urged members to complete the ratification of the Treaty on Traditional Knowledge and Expressions of Culture before the end of 2014.
The Leaders of the MSG members – PNG, Fiji, Solomon Islands, FLNKS of New Caledonia, and Vanuatu agreed to meet in the Solomon Islands in 2015 at a date and venue yet to be determined.
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4) Pictures: Melanesian Festival of Arts and Culture
Updated Fri 11 Jul 2014, 8:01am AEST

Papua New Guinea has played host to a spectacular showcase of Pacific islands culture.
The fifth Melanesian Festival of Arts and Culture, held from June 28 to July 11, brought together people from across the region.
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