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Oil Palm Plantation Seizes Indigenous’ Rights to Land and Education

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Illustration of oil palm plantation in Papua – Jubi

Jayapura, Jubi – A Papuan legislator Maria Elizabet Kaize said the oil palm investments, especially in the southern region of Papua, have seized the indigenous peoples’ lands and corrupted the education of young Papuans.

Maria Kaize, a native woman from Anim Ha customary area, said oil palm plantations give a negative impact on the indigenous children’s education in the district of Merauke, Boven Digoel and surrounding areas because the school-age Papuans prefer to follow their parents than going to school.

“It is true that the awareness among the school-aged Papuan children, especially in southern areas, for schooling needs to be improved. Many of them prefer to follow their parents in the forest,” Maria Kaize answered some questions from Jubi on Thursday (19/04/2018).

She took Bio area of Boven Digoel District as an example. In this area, many school-aged children join their parents as palm oil workers. Her sister, who is a local teacher, told her about this information.  She further said that the similar thing also happened Genyem and Lereh, Jayapura District, when the oil palm companies just operated in those areas.

“According to a teacher from Genyem whom I met some time ago, they went to the oil palm plantation for looking the children. Maybe this method can be used in some districts in the southern Papua. However, it needs support from the government, customary and church leaders as well as the community,” she said.

When meeting with Hilal Elver, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, a local leader from Keerom, Servius Servo said the transition of community land to oil palm plantation harmed the local people because it rated very cheap.  In fact, in some cases, they changed it with sugar and salt.

“Besides for oil palm plantations, community and sago forests mostly used for road construction and government infrastructure,” Servius said. (*)

Reporter: Arjuna Pademme

Editor: Pipit Maizier

Economy

Women protest the electricity cut off

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Indigenous women traders who barred the road in front of the market due to the electricity cut off by PLN. – Jubi / IST

Jayapura, Jubi – Dozens of indigenous women who are selling local products at the traditional market ‘Pasar Mama-Mama Papua’ blocked the road in front of the market on Friday afternoon (8/10/2018) to protest the National Electricity Company (PLN) for cutting off the electricity at the market for several hours due to late payment for the last four months amounted to Rp 60 million.

The coordinator for the Solidarity for indigenous Papuan traders (Solpap) Franky Warer said it just happened spontaneously because of their disappointment. “The electricity was cut off at around 11.00 Papua time when I was still at home, then someone called me. I then went to the market and called the mayor,” Warer told Jubi by phone on Friday evening (08/10/18).

After that, he said, the Municipal Government agreed to contact the PLN and the electricity in the market turned normal at around 18:00 Papua time.

Meanwhile, the Papuan legislator John NR Gobai commented that relevant parties should pay attention to this matter for not outsizing the traders. “This market is managed under the Trade and Industry Office of Jayapura Municipal Government. So the agency needs to find a solution immediately,” he said. (*)

 

Reporter: Arjuna Pademme

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Arts & Culture

Soedarmo: Papuan Coffee promoted in Boston and Paris

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The atmosphere of Papua Coffee Festival – Jubi / Alexander Loen

Jayapura, Jubi – Acting Papua Governor Soedarmo said Provincial Government is going to promote Papuan coffee to Boston and Paris shortly.

He revealed this agenda to reporters when opened the Papua Coffee Festival held in the parking of Bank Indonesia. Banks, local entrepreneurs and coffee farmers participated in this event.

“So, we are not only promoting Papuan coffee domestically but also abroad. Through our partner, we will participate in a coffee exhibition in Boston, whereas in September, I am going to send a team to participate in the exhibition held at the Eiffel Tower,” said Soedarmo on Friday (08/03/2018) in Jayapura.

According to him, the taste of Papuan coffee is not less delicious compared to coffee from other Indonesian regions or even other countries, because he has compared it with others. “I have met with the former Colombian Ambassador; then we compared Papuan coffee with Colombian coffee. But Papuan coffee is still better,” he said.

In the same place, Jayapura Mayor Benhur Tommy Mano claimed the municipal government is ready to support the provincial government in developing local commodities by promoting the local food in every event held by the municipal government.

“Indeed, we are not growing coffee here in Jayapura Municipality, but we are the biggest coffee connoisseurs,” Mano said. (*)

 

Reporter: Alexander Loen

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Economy

Freeport and Indonesian Government are unfair to Papuans

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A meeting between religious, youth and customary leaders and former workers of PT Freeport Indonesia conducted in Jayapura. -Jubi / Doc

Jayapura, Jubi – Coordinator of the United Organization against Violence, Peneas Lokbere, accused the US company-based PT Freeport and the Indonesian Government have been racist to Papuans.

According to him, it reflects from the history of the first contract of work between the company and the Indonesian authority in 1967 to the contract extension in 2018 that excluded the participation of Papuans.

“Papuans never have an idea about the content of the agreement. The Government of Indonesia considered them as second citizens, and this is discrimination,” said Lokbere on Thursday (26/07/2018) in Abepura.

Meanwhile, Samuel Tabuni, the Chairman of Papuan Community Forum on Freeport, said Jakarta (the central government) might be proud of taking over the 51 per cent share of PT Freeport, and the provincial might get a 10% share, but he warned about the indigenous rights.

“Since 1967, the indigenous peoples who have tenure rights of the land have never involved in regulating the ownership of shares in the mining company,” said Tabuni on Wednesday (25/07/2018) in Jayapura. (*)

 

Reporter: Benny Mawel

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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