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Forest Fires not Regional Disaster

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Forest fires in Sumatra - Suplied

Forest fires in Sumatra – Suplied

Jayapura, Jubi – The forest fires that have occurred in Papua and other Indonesian regions are not a regional-level disaster because it happened due to the human negligence, the Executive Director of Yayasan Pusaka, Y.L. Franky, said.

“What’s called as regional disaster is a situation caused by nature, but in this case it was deliberately burned,” he said.

“There is an intentional factor and human’s negligence. Thus, it is not appropriate to call it as regional disaster,” he said on Wednesday (21/10/2015).

Based on the satellite data by the National Institute of Aeronautics and Space (Lapan) on 5 September 2015, there are 200 fire spots in Merauke Regency and surrounding areas, particularly in Naukenjerai, Semangga, Kurik, Ilwayab, Tamboji sub-districts in Merauke Regency.
“Gazing at the fire spots, those fires might be involved both old and new companies as the culprits. The companies’ negligence; that is our question. Today the fire spots are founded either in the oil palm plantations or the forest concessions. According to the regulation opening the forest by burning is prohibited,” he said. But the worst haze disaster was happened in the second week of October 2015, which led to flight delays in Timika and Ambon.

Franky asked the corporates and the State to be responsible.
“People are aggrieved as well as the environment, while the corporates got profit. The cost of land opening is lower but damaging and endangering the human’s life. A disaster leads to a pleasure and benefit for the corporates only,” he said.

According to him, the burning as an alternative to sterilize the soil in oil palm plantation and forest concession is a modus that had happened long time ago in other regions, such as Sumatera and Kalimantan, although it has been prohibited. Therefore, it’s a duty of the Central Government to resolve the fires that were occurred recently.
“The Government should take appropriate measures to prevent the fires and ask the corporates to be responsible,” he added.

He asks the Government to not declare the case of fires as regional disaster but penalize the relevant corporates according to the Law.
“This current case of fires is a crime against humanity. In other region, it has taken the casualties. And it has happened many times, again and again,” he said.

Meanwhile, the member of Commission I of the Papua Representative Council, Laurenzus Kadepa, said the land fire is not appropriated to be called as disaster; there might be an intentional factor.
“In my opinion, the government should call it as national disaster, or it was happened because of dry season. It’s not appropriate. It demonstrates the government’s inability to resolve the problem. The government should find who’s the architect and what’s his motive. It could be done on purpose because the land fires are almost occurred in some Papuan areas,” Kadepa told Jubi by phone on Wednesday afternoon (21/10/21015).

Further he said, these incidents might have connection with the political interest, given the regional heads election would be held simultaneously in eleven regencies in Papua on 9 December 2015. “There’s a possibility about the political interest involved the investors and candidates related to the oil palm project. My advice is leave that interest, safe the Papuan forest for our children,” he said.

Antara News Agency earlier reported the Cenderawasih XVII Military Regional Commander Major General Hinsa Siburian said until now there’s no report said that the major cause of forest fire in the southern Papua was because of land clearing for plantation. “The cause of fire is more related to the natural and human factors that worsen the condition because people prefer to open the farming land by burning,” said Siburian in Merauke on Tuesday (20/10/2015). (Angela/Arjuna/rom)

Arts & Culture

Taparu in Kamoro socioculture

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Kamoro women when sorting out sago caterpillars. – Jubi / Doc

Mimika, Jubi – Each clan in Kamoro has ‘taparu’ or a specific location as a place to find food sources when they encircle rivers and mangroves in the lowland estuary of Mimika District.

A Dutch anthropologist J Power states ‘taparu’ is a local terminology emphasizing the relations of land and its inhabitants. “There are also the names of surrounding neighborhoods taken from the ancestral names,” as written in a book “Taparu Fratri of Mimika-Kamoro ethnic groups in Hiripau Village, East Mimika District, Mimika Regency”, by Dessy Pola Usmany et al. from the Ministry Education and Culture Directorate General of Culture Papua Cultural Value Conservation Center, 2013.

‘Taparu’ itself is more related to groups who inhabit within this region or surrounding environment as Kamoro people always encircle the river and sago forest for catching fish or gathering food. Everyone knows their own ‘taparu’.

‘Taparu’ in Kamoro language means the land, while Sempan people call it ‘se iwake’. If someone wants to mark the land he passes in gathering food, he solely adds the prefix ‘we’ such as tumamero-we and efato-we in Omawka village.

Similarly, people in Nawaripi village also do the same. Their areas are including Tumukamiro-we, Viriao-we, and Iwiri-we. All of these names reflect the relationship between the land and inhabitants.

Meanwhile, like the majority of Kamoro people, Ojibwa people believe in the power of their late patrilineal clan that depicted in the symbols of animals. The anthropologists call these symbols with totems which mean a belief that embodies a symbolic representation of society.

Unfortunately, today taparu also face the severest challenges of sedimentation due to tailings of mining activity that cause the silting of river and discolouration of Mollusca habitat in the estuary of Mimika District. (*)

 

Reporter: Dominggus Mampioper

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Avoiding conflicts of interest on indigenous land mapping

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The finalization of the formation of task force team for indigenous areas mapping in Jayapura District. -Jubi/Doc

Jayapura, Jubi – The indigenous land mapping in Jayapura District is very important, but it should be noted that it might have a tendency of contestation or conflict of interest among communities.

According to an anthropologist at the University of Papua I Ngurah Suryawan, the claim of land has a long history of dynamic and inconsistent movements. It needs a thorough study of the form of the indigenous land mapping, as it is inherent in the rights of indigenous people.

“Speaking of this, the indigenous people’s land’s right is currently facing a strong onslaught of change. “People are busy talking about land rights, but then they just see how their land was taken by companies, their relatives or other clans of family,” said Ngurah on Thursday (9/6/2018).

Meanwhile, Jayapura Regent Mathius Awoitauw has also formed a task force to do mapping on the indigenous territories. The task force chaired the Regional Secretary of Jayapura District which members are including the Indigenous Peoples Alliance of the Archipelago (AMAN), NGOs and indigenous communities.

“The task force was launched on Friday (5/9/2018) after many consultation and finalization among members and communities.” (*)

 

Reporter: Timoteus Marten

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Environment

Two hectares of forest area burned in Wasur National Park

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Forest fires in Wasur National Park area, Merauke Regency. – Jubi / Frans L Kobun

Merauke, Jubi – Eleven firefighters of the Firefighter Brigade of Forest and Land Control of Merauke was trying to put out of the fire on Wasur National Park area following the forest fires in the past few days.

Sukamto, the Head of Firefighter Brigade told reporters on Friday (7/9/2018) that the forest fires in Wasur National Park were identified yesterday so that his team went to the fire spot immediately.

He explained that approximately two hectares of forest area in Wasur National Park burned, although the firefighter team tried to blackouts of fire using both manual and semi-mechanics water pumps. “We don’t know yet what caused the fire. However, it is more likely the human’s factor,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sota Police Chief the Adjunct Police Commissionaire Ma’ruf states the police have provided an understanding to local communities in villages to encourage people not to burn the forest in dry season.

“If this habit still continues, it might give a negative impact on the forest ecosystems,” he said. (*)

 

Reporter: Frans L Kobun

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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