Sentani, Jubi – The local government cannot interfere in the affairs of established customary villages in Jayapura Regency, Papua, Jayapura Regent Matius Awoitau said.
“Customary villages are no longer the authority of the regional government, from the administrative system till the appointment of village chief by ondoafi (customary leaders),” said Awoitau told Jubi in Sentani on Thursday (23/6/2016).
Along with customary villages, there are some rules set up that the customary people should follow.
According to him, many villages are currently recognized as customary villages to coincide with the ending period served of the former government’s village chiefs. With this recognition, the village chief is no longer served. The decision is fully taken by the customary people in the village.
“Thus the authorities are in the hands of customary leaders and their people,” he said. He hoped with the expiration of the term of the government’s village chief, those villages would obtain new status. “It is the opportunity for the customary people after long time being forgotten. It’s time to stand up and see into the future of the people in the villages. The local government will give supports through empowerment development fund program and regular training so that people could experience the real prosperity,” he said.
Ondoafi of Demutru tribe from Iwon Village of Gresi Selatan Sub-District, Kostan Trapen said all this time he considered the customary village was raising a dualism of leadership in the village. “But it was wrong. After getting the information and socialization from the government about the customary village, as part of ondofolo (customary administrative), I am very grateful that the government has handed over the authority over the administrative system to each village,” Trapen said. (Engelbert Wally/rom)