Jayapura, Jubi – Papuan youths and activists grouped under Solidarity with Mbua Victims (SKJWM) urged the government to seriously deal with the disease caused by pertussis virus that has hit the region since last October.
“We urge the Central Government, especially the Indonesian Ministry of Health, Papua Provincial Health Office and Nduga Health Office to be more serious in handling the case occurred in Mbua, because until the early of January the victims reportedly was still occurred,” said the SKJWM Coordinator Peneas Lokbere told reporters on Saturday (16/1/2016). in KontraS Jayapura Office.
Lokbere with activists from IPMNI, AMPTPI, FIM, GMKI, PMKRI, PK, FPHAMP, GempaR, SKP Fransiskan, and SKP HAM-Papua said the Indonesian Ministry of Health, Papua Health Office and Nduga Health Office are those who most responsible to search the cause and announce what disease or virus causing the death of more than 50 Mbua residents.
“Besides pertussis virus, it might be another virus that has not yet detected. Because the death of residents in Mbua, Dal and Mbulmu Yalma sub-districts was followed the death of cattle and pets as well as plants,” he said.
In addition, this solidarity has some points to endorse the stakeholders to pay attention to Mbua case, including to urge the Papua and Nduga legislative councils to immediately form a special team or special committee to ascertain how many humans and animal that mysteriously died.
“The government also should provide some medical specialists, nurses and medical facilities including required drugs logistic, because we have reported about expired medicines distributed there,” he said.
Further, the Central Government and both Papua and Nduga government must pay attention on water sanitation and proper housing for local residents.
“We saw that only the Military and Police to provide food aid, we think it’s not right because the government who suppose to be most competent in handling the case has impressed to slowly react,” he said.
In separate place, the Papua Provincial Health Office Chief, Aloysius Giay told Jubi in his office that the medical team has been prepared to depart to Nduga Regency.
“It is a follow up action and we have sent two pediatricians, nurse, housewife and nutritionist. Currently we are still checking the budget availability from provincial budget amounted 1 billion allocated to Nduga Regency,” he said.
When asked about what virus that cause the death of dozens of toddlers, he said can not give a conclusion as he can only receive data from the survey team 1 and team 2 of the Ministry of Health and Provincial Health Office that stated the cause of death is pertussis disease.
“It’s pertussis from bacteria that affect the lungs and trigger a long-drawn pneumonia that accumulated by several factors,” he said.
Regarding to the number of victims due to this case, he said the information is still confusing.
“The survey 1 and 2 stated the number is 38 people but another team said 42. While the religious, customary and community leaders reported the number is 72. But when we gave the Freeport’s aid to the region, it revealed the number is 55 people,” he said. (Roy Ratumakin/rom)