Chairman of DPRP: Customary land owners should be respected

Ilustration of customary land conversation into rice field in Lagari, Nabire Regency – IST

Jayapura, Jubi – Speaker of the Papua House, Yunus Wonda said that the plan to build any public facilities, housing and houses of worship, should respect the community customary owners. That customary land must be released to avoud problem in the future.

“The location must be ascertained whether it is customary and certified, whether it will build a church, mosque or housing,” Wonda said Saturday (June 3) in Kampung Benyom Jaya I, Nimbokrang, Jayapura District.

According to him, Papua Provincial Government and Papuan People’s Legislative Assembly will only assist the construction of decent housing for the community if the land is not problematic, it also apllied to construction of houses of worship.

“However, if the land has its customary owner, we must respect them, we cannot claim it, there must be a customary release,” he said.

Indigenous people in one region or region must be respected. They are customary owners. Eventhough some people have live in certain place for quite sometime, they cannot claim they are entitled to land in a location. It should be clear whether there is a waiver of customary rights, land compensation and others.

Wonda said his visitation and assistance in the region had nothing to do with politics. He said the area was not a voting area. He got a vote from the mountainous region of Papua on the last election. But as Speaker of the Papua House, he has responsibility to check Papuan people condition everywhere.(*)