Jayapura, Jubi – A member of Papua Legislative Council of the People’s Conscience (Hanura) Party faction said President Joko Widodo’s goal to make Merauke a national barns will ignore the local indigenous peoples’ rights as experienced by Kamoro and Amungme, customary owners of the mining area of PT. Freeport in Mimika.
Hanura party faction member, Wilhelmus Pigai said his party urged the Papua Provincial Government to pay attention to the project seriously.
He said, this statement was based on the experience of the presence of PT. Freeport in Mimika where Amungme and Kamoro people are left behind in the management of natural resources, because of having no expertise in the company.
“Jokowi’s plan does not only focus on the rice plant, but also local food. This program must accommodate the interests and rights of indigenous peoples since it will use 1.2 million hectares of land, “Wilhelmus Pigai said to Salam Papua last weekend.
According to him, the plan will be developed 1.2 million hectares of rice fields in Merauke region within three years. Predictable, there will be conflicts between communities customary owners, financiers, and government. It also has the potential to encourage the arrival of migrants from outside Papua, because it takes a lot of workers working on paddy fields. Papuan people potentially are marginalized in their own land.
“It is feared that, if it’s too late to act, the government potentially involved getting rid of the presence of indigenous Papuans, including a supporting role in wiping out the potential of natural resources in Merauke and Papua in general,” he said.
While the chairman of the Parliament of Papua Hanura, Yan Permenas Mandenas said his party supported the central government policies and the provision of Papua to develop human resources but the program should be based on the arrangement of space and territory, paying attention to the social context and the potential resources of local communities. (Arjuna Pademme/ Tina)