Wednesday, December 16, 2015

1) WEST PAPUA: Distrust hinders hopes for peace, activist says

2) Papua politicians urged to unite in seeking a share in Freeport

3) Teater Koma Casts Spotlight on the Land of Papua

1) WEST PAPUA: Distrust hinders hopes for peace, activist says

Latifah Anum Siregar ... Indonesian government focuses on corporate 
development, rather than people. Image: WANMEC
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Item: 9525
Ryan Dagur
JAKARTA (UCA News/Pacific Media Watch): A lack of trust between the Indonesian government and the people of Papua has jeopardised hopes for a lasting peace in the restive province, according to a prominent human rights activist.

Persistent human rights abuses, a crackdown by the government on civil liberties and a focus on corporate development, rather than on the people, has left citizens feeling disenfranchised and distrustful, Latifah Anum Siregar said.

"We ask for open space for democracy, freedom of expression, and dialogue as promised by President Joko Widodo several times," Siregar told during a two-day "Torture and Violence in Asia" workshop held in Jakarta.

Siregar, a human rights lawyer and the chairwoman of the Alliance for Democracy in Papua, received the South Korean Gwangju Human Rights award in May for her role in promoting peace in Papua.

She said government efforts for progress in Papua would always be met by resistance because Papuans were not involved in policy making.

"Many of the government policies to encourage progress in Papua don't work because they never involve the Papuan people," she said.

Indonesia has maintained a heavy military presence in Papua, where a low-level insurgency against the central government has simmered for decades.

Accusations of killings
The military has been accused of resorting to extrajudicial killings, torture and abuse to defeat rebel forces.

A crackdown on activists in an attempt to crush the Papuan independence movement, has left local people deeply resentful and suspicious of the national government.

Siregar noted that the government has taken some positive steps this year, such as freeing political prisoners, including pro-independence activist Filep Karma.

"But, it's useless if freedom of expression remains prohibited. People will be arrested again," she said.

Siregar urged the government to change its approach to Papua from a pro-investment to a pro-people strategy.

Poengky Indarti, executive director of the Indonesian Human Rights Monitor, or Impartial, said that the government should stop using torture and violence in Papua.

"We witnessed many cases in which security officers in dealing with the Papuans failed to uphold their rights," Indarti said.

Instead, Indonesia should take persuasive steps in holding accountable human rights abusers, she said.

"Conflict in Papua has lasted for 50 years now. However, we have not seen any efforts that can really solve the problem," she said.

Pacific Media Watch


2) Papua politicians urged to unite in seeking a share in Freeport

Kamis, 17 Desember 2015 11:09 WIB | 363 Views
Jayapura, Papua (ANTARA News) - Chairman of the Papua regional executive board of Hanura party Yan P. Mandenas calls on regional political leaders to unite in seeking a share in PT Freeport Indonesia for the people of Papua and regional administration.

PT Freeport Indonesia, a subsidiary of the US mining giant Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold, has large copper and gold mines in Papua. 

"Political elite in Papua should stop their political quarrel, instead they should unit in giving contribution to the welfare of the local people," Mandenas said here on Thursday.

Local politicians should think for long term interest of the people and educate the people to be able to manage and develop abundant natural resources of Papua, he said. 

He said the politicians should help the Papua customary community in seeking compensation for their land used by Freeport. 

"I call on the governor , regional leaders , community leaders and politicians to contribute to the efforts that the people and regional administration are given a share in Freeport under its next contract," he said.

"We would take the initiative to coordinate with the governor to bring the demand to the central government that the people of Papua be given a share in Freeport Indonesia if its contract is extended. As a shareholder, the Papuan people could no longer be tricked with falsehood," he added. 

He said he agreed with extension of the contract of Freeport but the central government , regional administrations and customary communities should have a share. 

It would be more complicated if the contract of Freeport was terminated to be replaced by new investors, he said.

He said Freeport played a strategic role in the history of integration of Papua into Indonesia. 

PT Freeport is seeking to renew its working contract which would end in 2021. 

Its attempt to talk the government into extending its contract has placed it in the center of controversy as according to the countrys regulation discussion of contract extension could start only two years before the end of the present contract or in 2019.

The controversy was worse with Parliament Speaker Setya Nonvanto was reported to the Parliament Honorary Tribunal (MKD) by Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Sudirman Said.

Novanto was reported inviting Freeport President Director Maroef Sjamsudin to secret meetings and asked for share in the company. 

The controversy ended with the downfall of Setya Novanto as Parliament speaker on Wednesday night. 

Novanto, who was charged with violation of ethical code, tendered his resignation after all MKD members voted against him.(*)

By : Jakarta Globe | on 10:46 AM December 17, 2015
3) Teater Koma Casts Spotlight on the Land of Papua
Jakarta. The local theater company Teater Koma staged a politically charged performance of "Cahaya dari Papua" ("Light from Papua") at Galeri Indonesia Kaya last Saturday.
Directed by Nano Riantiarno, the 50-minute play revolves around a devilish dragon that terrorizes Papua. The play's storyline can be seen as an allegory for the repressions the Papuans have been facing since the land became part of Indonesia back in the 1960s.
The fire-breathing creature in the play — which may represent certain outsiders grabbing Papua's natural resources — monopolizes all the foods and causes hunger among the people. But a prophecy predicts that a newborn baby will become a hero that eventually saves Papua from the dragon.
"Our production of 'Cahaya dari Papua' this time is a development from the one we staged last year. Through this performance, we want to put a focus on the land of Papua and its hopeful progress toward a better future," the director said in a statement.
Since its inception in 1977, Teater Koma has produced around 130 plays — including works of internationally renowned playwrights like Shakespeare and Moliere — for television and the stages of Taman Ismail Marzuki and Gedung Kesenian Jakarta.



Jayapura, Jubi – A Papua legislator from Hanura Party, Yan P. Mandenas, urged officials in Jakarta to stop asking for Freeport’s shares.
“Don’t be greedy about Freeport’s shares, because Papuans have no stocks there,” he said in Jayapura on Monday (14/12/2015).
Further he said if there are those who observed to be entitled with Freeport’s shares, therefore Papuans are the most eligible. “If the central officials ask for it means they have no shame. While Papuans who dealt whit this stuff had so many victims, but the human rights violations had never been investigated,” he said.
Therefore he appealed to those who allegedly asked the Freeport’s shares in turn pushing Freeport to give shares to the local governments and the people of Papua. “What they should do is to make the customary land owners and local government are enable to obtain the shares from Freeport. It doesn’t need to pay their tax, but give their shares to people every year,” he said.
Then he suggested the local government and customary land owners in Freeport mining area could obtain the company’s stock in change with tax exempted for Freeport.
“Well, if it was me, I will refuse the tax but I want the shares. Give small percentage to the local government and customary landowners. So how long it takes for investment, we will get the result of production and we could get clear portion,” Mandenas said.
He also asked the Papua Governor Lukas Enembe to not enforce the Freeport’s contract extension that would be termeninated in the end of 2021 without any written agreement, which takes sides to Papua. “I think the governor didn’t understand that we can push the contract extension without a transparent MoU,” he said. (*/rom)

Jayapura, Jubi – Papua Governor Lukas Enembe said the province is facing a big challenge to improve education, a main indicator human development.
The average length of school participation in Papua is at 6.87 and the literacy rate is 75.92, he said.
“Most of those indicators are under the national average and MDG’s standard,” Enembe said in Jayapura on Monday (14/12/2015).
Thus, Enembe said, the challenge of Papua to realize the basic and qualified education service in the future is so huge. “It needs a breakthrough, big innovation and enormous creativity for the development acceleration in education sector,” he said.

Breakthroughs are being made to address the problem of limited infrastructures, teachers’ high absenteeism, lack of teachers especially in rural and remote areas, books and library facilities as well as appropriate school laboratories.
The additional challenge are local custom that Papuans are still not yet consider the importance of education for their children and other issues that contribute to disappearance of basic and qualified education services.
He explained the latest statistic data (Statistic Bureau, 2014) indicates the Papua Province as the province with lowest rate of the human development index in Indonesia, which is at 66.25 (Statistic Bureau, 2013).
“It is still outranged from the average national HDI, that is 73.29 (Statistic Bureau, 2012),” Enembe said.
According to him there are four elements constructing the human development index, those are the average length of school participation, life expectancy and purchasing power.
“When refer to it, the four elements of HDI are very closely with the development in education and health sectors, both directly or indirectly,” said Enembe.
He added with public service improvement in education sector, especially in terms of access, the literacy rate and average length of school participation could be improved. (Alexander Loen/rom)

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