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Indigenous Peoples of Papua

Legislator Accuses Government of Trying to Undermine Melanesian Culture

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Map of Melanesia - Supplied

Map of Melanesia – Supplied

Jayapura, Jubi – A Papuan legislator has accused the central government of using nefarious tactics to undermine the Melanesian culture in Papua and Papua Barat provinces.

Laurenzus Kadepa’s remarks were in response to a statement by Deputy of the Ministry of Political, Legal and Defense Affairs for Domestic Political Affairs, Major General Yoedi Swastono, about the central of Indonesian Melanesian Brotherhood Community (PMMI) that would be established in Manokwari, Papua Barat Province.

Kadepa, a member of Commission I at the Papua legislative council, said, “State institutions are playing tactices to undermine Melanesian culture in Papua. Earlier, there is an attempt to solve the customary institution in Papua by legitimizing the Customary Law Institution to paralyze the Papua Customary Council and Tribal Customary Council (DAP/DAS),” Kadepa told Jubi by phone on Sunday (31/1/2016).

And now appears PMMI, he said. That organization has declared in Ambon, Maluku on 6 October 2015. As a follow up, the Central Government plans to build the Central PMMI in Manokwari.

“Since the beginning, I have questioned what the reason for Papua to sign the PMMI declaration. Until now there has been no study that could be accounted for and stated if Maluku, North Maluku and East Nusa Tenggara are also Melanesian like Papua and Papua Barat,” he said.

He said, the establishment of PMMI was full of the political interest. He concerned it would be a polemic in the future; moreover it is related to race, culture and self-identity.

In the national seminar held by the Indonesian Institute of Sciences in Jakarta last week, as resource person, Yoedhi Swastono who also the Chairman of Papua and Aceh Desk of the Ministry of Political, Legal and Defense, said the government now paid more attention to Papua.

“The domestic cultural development is represented by the Melanesian community in Indonesia. On 6 October 2015, it has declared by five governors of East Timor, Maluku, North Maluku, Papua and West Papua and witnessed by the President Jokowi in Ambon. PPMI is currently under the supervision of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Melanesian Culture Center would be established in Manokwari in the term of cultural development,” he said at that time. (Arjuna Pademme/rom)

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Papua Governor: No more conflicts in Puncak Jaya

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Illustration of Mulia City, Puncak Jaya Regency. – Jubi / Doc

Jayapura, Jubi – Papua Governor Lukas Enembe said Puncak Jaya District there should not be a stigma for Puncak Jaya District as a conflict area because it is not a killing field. In contrary, this area is safe and peaceful.

“I governed this region once, so I know what people want. For that reason, I ask the local government officials to be able to take care of the community so to avoid more conflicts,” told Enembe to reporters on Thursday (09/13/2018) at the Office of the Papuan People’s Assembly (MRP).

Furthermore, the governor said to avoid conflicts between different tribes and groups; the government officials should not also act to represent their personal or group interests.

Separately, Papua Police Deputy Chief the Brigadier General Yakoubus Marjuki said that the police always try to use a subtle approach to solve conflicts in Papua.

“This is our commitment because we want every region in Papua to always be safe and peaceful including in Puncak Jaya.” (*)

 


Reporter: Roy Ratumakin

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Arts & Culture

Jayapura presents Tanah Merah Maritime Festival in November

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The coastal indigenous dance performed at the Tanah Merah Maritime Festival last year. – Jubi / Engel Wally

Sentani, Jubi – the Local government of Jayapura District started a campaign introducing the Maritime Festival of Tanah Merah (FBTM) that will be held from 19 to 21 November 2018 in Entiyebo, Tablanusu Village, Depapre Sub-district.

FBFM, which held in 2014 for the first time, is part of the annual tourism agenda of the local government along with the Lake Sentani Festival.

The Acting Head of Culture and Tourism Office of Jayapura District Benyamin Yerisetouw said his office has campaigned about this event to some village heads and community leaders in the five coastal sub-districts within the district.

“Our target is, by 19 to 21 November, all communities can participate in this event, in particular, those from the coastal areas, as well as domestic and international tourists,” Yerisetouw explained when met in his office on Friday (9/14/2018).

Meanwhile, the Chairman of Indonesian Commerce of Chamber and Industry of Jayapura District Hengky Yoku said the economic development of the local community relies on its potential resources.

“This area has many activities which can promote the cultural history of the local community. When this comes in forms of festival or performance, there is an economic value that resulted from transactions of local community and visitors who attend the event.” (*)

 


Reporter: Engel Wally

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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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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