1) Push to suspend Indonesia as Associate Member in MSG
By Len Garae 9 hrs ago
Members of two Executive Committees line up
In the latest emergency joint meeting organised by the Executive Committees of United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP) and Vanuatu West Papua Association and Unification Committee (VWPAUC) at the Presbyterian Church Conference Hall in Port Vila last Saturday, members of both organisations have emphasised the importance of intense lobbying with member countries of Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) to speak with one voice to suspend Indonesia from its Associate Membership status to MSG and accept ULMWP to Full Membership status to MSG.
The reason for their latest decision they insist, is Jakarta’s seeming indifference to urgent calls by PIF and ACP for Indonesia to cater the UN Human Rights Commissioner to visit West Papua and report back to PIF on the situation on the ground there.
Vanuatu chose to call for “human right” abuse in West Papua as the only way of convincing MSG member countries of Fiji and Papua New Guinea to board the protest vehicle to support the West Papua Struggle.
Indonesia has also placed an international media ban over West Papua which explains why no journalists have been allowed into West Papua to report on the real situation on the ground there.
One or two foreign journalists that dared to ignore the ban were dealt with by Indonesian authorities.
However, the truth is that if there is nothing to hide on the ground in West Papua then the UN Commissioner as well as media representatives should be allowed in without hesitation.
The President of VWPAUC, Pastor Alain Nafuki explained, “We will do our utmost best to lobby to make sure that ULMWP becomes a full member of MSG in its meeting in Port Vila this year and Indonesia suspended from its Associate Membership status”.
The meeting added that any chance of reaccepting Indonesia into its status in MSG would depend on whether Jakarta complies with PIF’s request for the UN Commissioner of Human Rights to visit West Papua and submit a report on the human right issues there.
An unanimous response to the recommendation followed and an emphasis was made to brief the new Minister of Foreign Affairs in the new Government of Vanuatu on the West Papua issue.
The meeting also recognised the importance of appointing a new Director General of MSG who has Vanuatu’s spirit at heart on the West Papua issue.
While the vacant post for the next DG of MSG has been advertised, the outgoing Fijian DG was reported to have said his successor would be from Vanuatu.
Finally, but not least, since ULMWP is a charitable organisation, the meeting agreed to approach the Vanuatu Government to fund the running of its Port Vila Office on a transitional basis for two to three years while ULMWP sources its own means to prepare to take over after that.
ULMWP Treasurer Paula Makabory reminded the meeting of an assurance by then Prime Minister Moana Carcasses to get parliament to pass a budget for the ULMWP Office, an assurance which could not be realised due to political change in Government.
The meeting agreed to submit a proposed budget to the Government to fund the transitional period of the ULMWP Office.
2) Patient suspected of having coronavirus hospitalised in Merauke awaiting laboratory test result
Published 18 hours ago on 16 March 2020
Merauke, Jubi – A patient suspected of having coronavirus is currently undergoing intensive medical treatment at a VIP room in Merauke Regional Public Hospital. However, it has not confirmed yet whether this 46-year-old male patient to be infected. Currently, the hospital authority determined his status as an under-surveillance patient due to fever, cough, runny nose and respiratory issue.
In their press conference on Saturday (14/3/2020), the Secretary of Merauke Regional Health Office Dr Nevil Mustika states the patient hospitalised since Wednesday (11/3/2020). Based on their further examination, the Merauke Regional Health Office finds the patient has attended a seminar in Bogor from 25 to 28 February 2020.
Moreover, Dr Mustika says the health office has received information that a patient died of having coronavirus at Moewardi Hospital, Solo, Central Java on Thursday (12/3/2020) also attended the same seminar. Based on this information, the Merauke Regional Public Hospital takes action to anticipate this and keep monitoring the patient’s current health condition.
“So he [patient] is currently under our supervision because he had the symptoms of respiratory illness, cough, runny nose and fever. We had confirmation that the patient attended a seminar in Bogor. Therefore, we decide to carry out close monitoring to the patient,” says the secretary Nevil Mustika.
Dr Nevil Mustika further asserts that the patient has not positively diagnosed with having coronavirus because it will confirm after the laboratory test. “We will take a specimen from him and send it to the Research and Development Agency in Jakarta for the result,” he says.
At the moment, he says the patient stay in a VIP room of the hospital, while the VIP room has cleared from other patients. As he is now staying in the VIP room, he would not go to the isolation room because there is another patient. However, we apply a standard of isolated treatment toward the patient. Visitors to the VIP room has restricted to nurses and doctors who directly examine the patient, and they have to wear protector,” says Nevil.
So far, until Saturday, Nevil says the Merauke Regional Public Hospital has not found the patient of having coronavirus. “I should tell the public about this, so they would not be panic. But we must remain vigilant,” he appeals.
Meanwhile, the Director of Merauke Regional Public Hospital Dr Yenny Mahuze while asked for confirmation told Jubi via SMS that she is currently in Jakarta for attending the Health Ministry’s event concerning regional referral hospitals for patients suspected or patients with coronavirus.
“If related to the patient with coronavirus, please directly contact the Merauke Regional Health Office for further explanation. So far, no patient with coronavirus treated in the local public hospital,” she asserts. (*)
3) Policy to restrict national and foreign citizens visiting Papua is still unclear
Published 18 hours ago on 16 March 2020
Jayapura, Jubi – Until Saturday (14/3/2020), the application of policy to restrict both Indonesian and foreign citizens visiting Papua is still unclear notwithstanding the result of the meeting held by the Papuan Regional Coordination Forum in Jayapura on 5 March 2020 to prevent the coronavirus entering Papua.
The Papuan Provincial Secretary Herry Dosinaen says the Papua Provincial Government has followed up the meeting outcome by issuing the Governor’s Instruction. “It includes the Instruction for foreign citizens as well. It will distribute immediately to regencies/municipality and other government institutions. You can check it at the Legal Bureau Office,” says Dosinaen in Jayapura on Thursday (12/3/2020).
Further, he says that the visit restriction for national citizens and prohibition of foreigners entering Papua will apply by intensifying of supervision to airports and ports that are the entry points for outsiders to Papua. “It means those who are on duty must selectively apply this instruction. For example, it should be a further examination to each passenger in the airport, whether they are national or foreign citizens,” he says.
However, until Saturday, Jubi has not yet received the official copy of the instruction. Moreover, on the scene, the policy has not affected the flight schedules in Sentani Airport yet.
As cited from http://djj.informasibandara.org/ais/web_arrival/web_arrival.php that accessed at 21.30 Papua time, ten flights are scheduled to arrive in the Sentani International Airport during Sunday (15/3/2020). They are including Citilink QG 700 from Makassar (scheduled to arrive at 00.00 Papua time), Lion Air JT 794 from Jakarta (scheduled to arrive at 06.00 Papua time), Lion Air JT3794 from Denpasar (scheduled to arrive at 06.00 Papua time).
Meanwhile, other flights scheduled to arrive at Sentani International Airport on Sunday are GA656 from Jakarta (scheduled to arrive at 06.45 Papua time), Lion Air JT798 from Makassar (scheduled arrived at 06.55 Papua time), Batik Air ID6180 from Jakarta (scheduled to arrive at 07.15 Papua time), Sriwijaya Air SJ 268 from Surabaya (scheduled to arrive at 13.00 Papua time), Garuda Indonesia GA631 from Makassar (scheduled to arrive at 13.45 Papua time), Citilink QG 712 from Makassar (scheduled to arrive at 15.30 Papua time), and Batik Air ID 6182 from Makassar (scheduled to arrive at 16.15 Papua time). The flight schedules to Papua are relatively not changing to the previous before the visit restriction policy to Papua applied.
Separately, on Thursday, the Director of Jayapura Regional Public Hospital Aloysius Giay stated that the hospital authority had asked the quarantine and immigration offices as well as other relevant offices to restrict the examination at the airports, ports and border gates. “It is not only checking the temperature of the body because the instruments already installed at the airport,” admits Giyai.
Moreover, he says the health screening tools have been installed at both Sentani and Frans Kaisiepo airports for checking the health condition of passengers. “We have installed the tools at Sentani and Biak airports, but not for seaports. We have asked the quarantine office to conduct the screening selectively,” says Giyai. (*)