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Different treatment from Indonesian officials for indigenous journalists in West Papua

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Jayapura, Jubi – Indonesia has less than three months to deliver “full and free” press access to Papua provinces, says PFF, the Pacific Freedom Forum.

“Jakarta risks global condemnation if it continues to ignore the facts,” warns PFF Chair Monica Miller. ”

A visit last month by media freedom campaigners proves that access for Papua press is still far from full and free”, she says.

Violence, Bullying, Sexual Harassment

An eight person delegation from MFCI, the Media Freedom Committee Indonesia, visited the Papua towns of Jayapura, Merauke and Timika, between 29 January to 3 February 2017. Their reported findings include :
– Ten cases of violence against journalists that are still not resolved. – Only 16 foreign press were given permits to visit Papua last year, with 11 forced to accept government guides.
– Different treatment from Indonesian officials for indigenous journalists versus Indonesian journalists – such as stigmatisation and intimidation of “OAP” – ‘original Papua persons’.
– Local press still need police permits to cover public gatherings, including protests.
– Women journalists routinely suffer bullying and sexual harassment from government sources, but rarely report it to police because they “take it for granted.”
– In an atmosphere of surveillance, intimidation and harassment, media outlets find it impossible to recruit new reporters. One training session for newcomers saw 30 people on the first day, 12 the second day and none the third.
– Business models threaten independence of Papua media, including in Timika, where ad revenues are sourced from Freeport mine, its subsidiaries and local government.
– Threats against independence include pressure from “certain parties” on mass media not to cover environmental issues.
– Isolation from other media due to a lack of access to communications resources causes ethical lapses.
Supported by WAN-IFRA, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, under its Strengthening Media and Society programme, the MFCI visit was also backed by the Denmark ministry of Foreign Affairs. PFF welcomes the input from WAN-IFRA, and praises the leadership role played by Denmark.
“Other diplomatic partners in Jakarta need to do much more to support press freedom,” says Miller.

Shameful
“Their continued silence on abuses against the press and other human rights compares shamefully with billions in profit being made from Papua by outside interests.”
Findings from the MFCI visit join recent wide concern expressed about Indonesia blocking access to 800,000 websites. Among blocked sites is SuaraPapua – the Voice of Papua – a news outlet exposing human rights abuses.

Voice for the voiceless
PFF praises LBH Pers, the Legal Aid Institute for the Press, for representing SuaraPapua as a “voice for voiceless.” Last year, PFF laid down a deadline for open access to Papua, in the lead up to Indonesia hosting World Press Freedom Day on 3rd May 2017. The deadline was reportedly rejected by a minor official at the Indonesian embassy in Wellington, New Zealand.

Think Carefully
However, PFF has not been able to get confirmation of the alleged rejection from Jakarta.

“Instead of speeding up preparations for World Press Freedom Day, Jakarta appears to be slowing down”, says Miller.

“Make no mistake, Jakarta needs to think very, very carefully about its continued failure to fulfil its own promises, its own guarantees for media freedom under the Indonesian constitution, and its signature to many international treaties.”

Ahead of #WPFD2017, PFF is calling on journalists everywhere to focus attention on one of the world’s least reported areas.

“This year, global journalists must all prove themselves wantoks of the Papua press”, she says. Indonesia improved eight places between 2015 and 2016 on the RSF, Reporters Sans Frontiers World Press Freedom Index, at 130 of 180 countries, but is still coded red for a generally “bad” situation. (*)

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Arts & Culture

Papua Printing Company to support young Papuan writers

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Komunitas Sastra Papua (Papuan Literature Community) when launching a discussion on literacy education in Jayapura. – Jubi/Hengky Yeimo

Jayapura, Jubi- Komunitas Sastra Papua (Papuan Literature Community) asked the Papua Provincial Government to reactive the regional company ‘Percetakan Rakyat Papua’ (Papua Regional Printing Company) to response the current demand of publication since many young Papuans are now becoming a writer.

However, the main constraint is in printing,” said the secretary of Komunitas Sastra Papua (Kosapa) Aleks Giyai on Thursday (31/5/2018).

Percetakan Rakyat Papua is considered bringing opportunities for Papuans to get the lower-cost printing. “To print some printed items such as books, magazines, calendars and so on, we have to make an order in Java. Even though the printing cost is quite cheaper, the shipping cost is expensive,” explained Giyai.

Meanwhile, cultural activist Andy Tagihuma thought books play a crucial role in developing a character of a nation. “The gradual progress of literacy development in Papua is a result of the inconsistent book publishing,” said Tagihuma.

He further said Papua should be able to produce and publish books and other writings locally like what has been done by the University of Cenderawasih in the past, which printed most of their writings such as Warta Uncen and other scientific journals independently. “But now they mostly send it to Java for printing,” he said. (*)

Reporter: Hengky Yeimo

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Economy

Developers must complete the permit for housing construction

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Illustration of the rapid growth of housing in Doyo Lama area. – Jubi/Engel Wally

Sentani, Jubi – As the rapid growth of housing construction in the areas of Sentani Timur, Sentani and Waibhu, the Head of Integrated Permit and Regional Investment Agency of Jayapura District Henock Puraro said developers should administer the IMB (Construction Permit) first for new housing constructions.

Developers who want to build new housings need to arrange an agreement with the tenure of landowners first. Then, they should complete the legal aspect of their proposal,” Puraro told reporter in Jayapura Regent Office at Gunung Merah, Sentani on Thursday (31/5/2018).

He said his office would soon publish about the spatial planning to the public in regards to the ongoing regional development process. “We will publish the system of city spatial planning including the regulation related to housing construction,” he said.

Similarly, the Chairman of Chambers of Commerce and Industry for Jayapura District Henky Yoku said developers should consider the cultural, social and economic aspects of the local community.

“What is the impact of housing development on the local community? Developers cannot just build new housing then take a profit of it. They should take account of the sustainability of the local community who live surrounding the environment. Therefore there is a value added from this development,” he said. (*)

 

Reporter: Engel Wally

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Environment

Nine fish species found in Fakfak coastal areas

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Nine fish species found in the coastal areas of Berau Bay dan Nusalasi-Van Den Bosch Bay, Fakfak District. – Jubi/Doc CI Indonesia, Fakfak

Manokwari, Jubi – The Conservation International (CI) Indonesia in Fakfak has identified nine species of coral fish as new species because it has not scientifically included in Pisces taxonomy.

The Program Manager of CI Indonesia for Fakfak Nur Ismu Hidayat said this finding made during the survey on the potential of coastal areas in Fakfak in two-week diving at the Berau Bay, Kokas sub-district and Nusalasi-Van Den Bosch Bay, Karas sub-district.

“From two weeks of diving at the northern Fakfak (the coastal area of Berau Bay), we can identify six new species. Then three species were identified in the western Fakfak, namely the coastal areas of Nusalasi-Van Den Bosch Bay located at Karas sub-district,” Hidayat told Jubi on Friday (1/6/2018) in Manokwari. Further, he said the habitats of the nine fish are quite varied, from the depth of 1-2 metres with average wave condition, muddy sediment to the coral area.

“One of the newfound fish, 6-centimetre black fish with the light-coloured mouth like wearing lipstick, is classified in Pomacentrus Family based on its morphology. This species cannot find in other places. Based on this fact, the researchers strongly assume the species is the endemic fish of Fakfak coastal sea,” said Hidayat. Moreover, he said the nine new fish species are not possible to consume because of their size, but they potentially become decorative fish that people can enjoy their beauty in their natural habitats, so, it’s potential for ecotourism development.

Furthermore, he said the coral and marine biota in Fakfak are extraordinary. Fakfak coastal area is also a safe habitat for rare fish species that rarely found in other sea areas.  “For instance, the gong-liked black parrot fish (large coral fish species which a bulge front head looked like a gong), known as Chlorurus Oedema, was successfully captured during the survey in the estuary of the Nusalasi-Van Den Bosch Bay,” added Hidayat.

Meanwhile, a lecturer from Universitas Papua (Unipa) Manokwari Keylopas Krey said the potential of local species in West Papua Province is quite high, but it has not well documented. For the new finding, the researcher certainly will take a systematic and scientific procedure. “In the process to identify the taxonomy, morphology and genetic analysis would be applied to confirm and validate whether these nine species are new species that evolve or have a relationship with other species in that area,” said Krey.

The finding of these alleged new fish species is a good prospect for science. Therefore the reserve management of this area couldn’t be separated from science. It means science will be applied to improve the application system and national and international records about regional potencies.

“Unipa will not only continue to encourage the smart steps of many parties in protecting the environment in the entire of the land of Papua as the centre of biodiversity; but also keep to push all the parties for taking positive steps toward the sustainable development management,” he said.

Moreover, he added,” there are high conservation values that need to maintain. Therefore, the development in Papua, especially in West Papua Province, can always prioritise the values that respect to the future of local wisdom for our future generation.” (*)

 

Reporter: Hans Kapisa

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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