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Transmigration Program to Create More Problems in Papua, Youth Leader Says

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Transmigration area in Keerom regency, West Papua - Suplied

Transmigration area in Keerom regency, West Papua – Suplied

Sorong, Jubi – Plans by the Ministry for Disadvantage Regions and Transmigration to launch a massive transmigration program to promote regional accessibility will give rise to more problems in Papua, a youth leader said.

The Chairman of Indonesian Eastern Region Youth Forum (FPKTI), Yanto Ijie, said the influx of migrants from other parts of Indonesia could become a demographic threat for indigenous Papuans.
“The problems in Papua are different from those in other provinces,” he told Jubi through email from Jakarta on Tuesday (24/11/2015).

He said the recognition of basic rights of Papuans that has been regulated in the Law No.21/2001 about Papua Special Autonomy remains an issue that has to be addressed.
“First, the right to political recognition for indigenous Papua. Second, the right to empowerment and welfare and the third, the right on wide access of transportation and communication to the entire land of Papua,” he said.

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“Fourth, the right to equal education, fifth, the right on health services to Papuans, and sixth, the right for justice in economic sharing from its natural resources,” he added.

He further said the government obliges to provide security and safety toward Papuans. “There’s a concern among Papuans that mobilization of migrants through transmigration program would give impact towards the depopulation of indigenous Papua,” he said.

Moi (Sorong) youth figure, Klois Yable concerned about the marginalization of indigenous Papua when the massive transmigration program was implemented. According to him, once transmigration program is running, many forests would be cut off; the landtenureship would be handed to the government that might trigger a conflict among people and marginalization of Papuans.
“The State should do the efforts concretely in implementing the Special Autonomy Law as well as in preparing the prevalent grand design system,” he said.

West Java Governor, Ahmad Heryawan, as reported by viva.co.id, on Wednesday (10/2/2015) signed agreement with the West Papua Provincial Government on placement location of trans-migrants.  This agreement was part of agenda in the series of the National Meeting of the Manpower and Transmigration Ministry. West Java is planning to send approximately 700 households each year according to the agreement.

The former Minister of Manpower and Transmigration, Muhaimin Iskandar said the migration of population from several regions in Java Island to West Papua Province could drive the regional growth and development which is 5,870,642 hectares of area that is currently potential to become a location of trans-migrants. “This program is part of ten days working program of the Ministry of Manpower and Transmigration,” said Muhaimin. (Niko MB)

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