Monday, December 14, 2015



3) Villagers still cross PNG/Indo border despite abuses

4) Just Kidding, Minister Luhut Says Over Freeport Shakedown Scandal

Jayapura, Jubi – Wutung people who live in the border of Papua New Guinea feel that they have been treated unfairly as they cannot cross the border despite having a crossing permit, said Deputy chairman of Commission I of Papua Legislative Council on Governance, Foreign Relations, Politics, Law and Human Rights, Orwan Tolli Wone.
“Watung women traders who sell betel nut and others admitted the difficulty when crossing over to PNG to sell their goods even though they have a cross-border card,” Orwan told Jubi on last week.
“While PNG citizens who want to sell or buy staples in Wutung gets free access,” he said after conducting a working visit to the area few days ago. .

He said he hoped Jayapura government to pay attention to the condition of society Wutung including basic infrastructure.
“The border region is a state authority. Measure of state success is border communities. Yet the real condition is different. This is not only happening in Papua, but also Indonesia’s border regions in other provinces, “he said.
He further said, to build border region can not simply rely n provincial budget, it needs support of state budget. He hopes the central government to prepare a budget sufficient for the border region, including in Papua.
Mama Septina Wemallo, Wutung citizen who daily sells betel nut to PNG said she and other residents felt treated unjustly when crossing into neighboring country.
“We find difficulty when we want to go to PNG, difficult. Yet, residents of PNG easily come to Indonesia easy. I ever had an argue with PNG security, even though we had a cross-border card, “said Septina Wemallo some time ago. (Arjuna Pademme/ Tina)


Jayapura, Jubi – Minister of Agrarian and Spatial Planning / Head of National Land Agency of the Republic of Indonesia, Ferry Mursyidan Baldan said the communal rights to land exist in Papua.
He stated when meeting with the government of Papua Province in the context of socialization of the Land Acquisition Act in Jayapura on last week.
He said the government has issued a regulation on communal rights. Definition of communal rights based on Agricultural and Spatial regulation No. 9 of 2015 is the common property of land a customary law community or collective ownership rights over the land given to the people who are in forests or plantations.

This regulation is to recognize and respect for indigenous rights. ” The land rights are in Papua,” he said again.
He explained if later the government of Papua feel there are things that need to be elaborated or add, he allows it as Papua applies Special Autonomy Law.
He added, in the context of the norm, it is necessary to strengthen the provision of communal rights in Papua.
The regulation issued is to help and develop the province of Papua regarding to the communal rights of land in Papua. (Alexander Loen)

3) Villagers still cross PNG/Indo border despite abuses
Updated at 5:26 pm on 10 December 2015

A representative from a Papua New Guinea village close to the border with Indonesia says traditional border crossing rights still have a place despite some abuses of the system.
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A representative from a Papua New Guinea village close to the border with Indonesia says traditional border crossing rights still have a place despite some abuses of the system.
Traditional Border Crossers have officially recognised rights to travel back and forth between PNG and Indonesia's Papua region for cultural reasons.
Jame Nunakru is a ward representative in Lido village in PNG's West Sepik province.
He spoke to Johnny Blades about life near the border.
JAME NUNAKRU: Those people who are living close to the PNG border, we have relatives who are living on the other side of the border - we sort of have common, traditional ties. That is why even though West Papua is ruled by Indonesia we still have those traditional ties and we still travel across for customary purposes and things like that, not using passports but using traditional TBC cards - a traditional border card. This is the card I talk about and this is issued to the five villages along the west coast and we use this to travel across the border.
JOHNNY BLADES: So all of the villagers have them?
JN: That's right, yes.
JB: Do you have to prove that you were born here or anything like that?
JN: Yes, we have to. The council will endorse any application form of any community member to satisfy that they are a citizen of that village. Even then they take it to, I think, foreign affairs who will process a card for him or her.
JB: And does the system work quite well? Does it work alright?
JN: It used to be, but there's a lot of abuse now because the card has been issued to those people who are not entitled to it, that's why there is some abuse. We have relatives who live on the other side, when they come I don't see any problems there. They live with our people for quite a while and then they return.
JB: Do you get many OPM [West Papuan independence rebels] people coming over?
JN: I cannot give you any exact figure but we have elements living on our side of the border and we have PNG sympathisers who accept them when they come into our territory.
JB: Are they coming because they are also related to people here or because they're fleeing?
JN: Sometimes they are in search of medicine, maybe food supplies, and others they just cross over to escape from Indonesian authorities.  
JB: What are the biggest changes to your way of life here?
JN: There is not much development taking place along the border compared to the Indonesian side, where there is tremendous development taking place. On our side of the broder the government is not concentrating and, as such, we have not seen much improvement in terms of development.
JB: Is that contrast over there, is that pulling people over? People who want better services or anything like that.
JN: I think yes. It's not happening very much along the coast but there's a lot of people migrating to the Indonesian side in search of, you know,  better life.
JB: Things like...
JN: Education, health, you know the general standard of living. They are not getting much attention or much help they tend to move across in search of a better life.


4) Just Kidding, Minister Luhut Says Over Freeport Shakedown Scandal
By : Jakarta Globe | on 8:28 PM December 14, 2015
Jakarta. Chief security minister Luhut Panjaitan played down House of Representatives Speaker Setya Novanto's alleged attempt to shake down mining giant Freeport Indonesia for a purported $4 billion, saying that Setya's remarks in the secret audio recording are "nothing more than a joke."
Appearing before the House Ethics Council, which probing Setya’s conduct, Luhut claimed that since the government has no intention of renewing Freeport's contract beyond 2021, Setya's request for Freeport to divest its shares through him must have been a joke.
“Why would anyone ask for shares?” Luhut told the Ethics Council, suggesting that Freeport's contract might not be extended and the company's assets would then belong to the Indonesian government.
“So it is impossible that Setya is trying to control [the distribution of Freeport] shares. I see Setya's remarks as nothing more than a joke,” Luhut explained.
Setya and oilman Muhammad Riza Chalid said Luhut would advocate on Freeport's behalf, saying that Luhut is a close friend of James R. Moffett, the founder and chairman of Arizona-based Freeport-McMoRan, Freeport Indonesia’s parent company.
Luhut, a retired army general, admitted that he met Moffett in 2012 to discuss possibilities of him overseeing security in Freeport's Grassberg mine in Papua but denied that he had become close with Moffett ever since.
Luhut added that he has been advising President Joko Widodo against allowing the contract negotiations to take place before 2019.
“Novanto and Riza mentioned my name and made it appear that I could influence the president [to bring forward the contract discussions]" Luhut told the House Ethics Council.
“But instead I sent out a memo to the president advising him not to. If [Joko] makes a wrong decision and one that goes against rules and regulations, then politically it will lead to a backlash against the government,” Luhut added.
Luhut also reiterated his displeasure at Sudirman for going public with the recording.
“The case needs to be settled without creating this much controversy. I am merely reminding [Sudirman] to not overreact,” Luhut said.
Unlike the president, Luhut said he is not mad at Setya and Riza for saying that he could influence Joko to side with Freeport: “I have no interest in the [contract renegotiation] issue. I'm not mad. Everything is under control,” he said.

The plot thickens
Setya is accused of soliciting a 20 percent stake in the copper and gold miner in exchange for speeding up the miner’s contract extension negotiations with the government before the scheduled 2019 start date. It is alleged that the request was made during a meeting in June with Freeport Indonesia chief executive Maroef Sjamsoeddin, who secretly recorded the meeting.
Luhut’s name comes up no fewer than 60 times in the recording, with Setya and businessman Riza telling Maroef that they could get Luhut to change the president's mind on the Freeport renegotiation bid.
The House Ethics Council was supposed to also hear Riza's testimony but the oilman has snubbed calls to appear before the tribunal on Monday.
“We have received no official notification [to explain Riza's absence],” House Ethics Council member Syarifuddin Sudding said, adding that the council will determine later  whether it should involve the police.
This is the second time Riza failed to appear for a hearing, which means the council could enlist the help of the police to bring him in the third time.
National Police Chief Gen. Badrodin Haiti said last week that Riza had left the country and the businessman was likely “hiding in an Asian country.”
However, Badrodin also said it would be difficult for Indonesia to seek extradition of Riza from any country as the ongoing inquiry is done by an ethics tribunal and not part of a criminal investigation. He could therefore not be formally charged with any crime at this point.

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