Yan Ever Mengge, an alledged victim of violence in Puragi Village, South Sorong, West Papua Province - IST

For the sake of palm oil, Brimob allegedly persecuted customary land owner


Yan Ever Mengge, an alledged victim of violence in Puragi Village, South Sorong, West Papua Province – IST

Jayapura, Jubi – Three Brimob personnel in West Papua Police allegedly mistreated civilians, Yan Ever Mengge, in Puragi Village, Metamani District, South Sorong Regency, on October 23, 2017, while held a vigil at PT Permata Putera Mandiri (PPM) palm plantation area, a subsidiary of ANJ Group.

According to a Press release by civil society organizations received by Jubi per e-mail in Jayapura on Monday (November 20), the man is one of the three members who were hit at the back with a rifle butt.
The apparatus also uses boots and hands, kicking the ribs and belly of the victim, head and knee, made the victim unable to walk. His whole body was bruised, vomiting blood, dizzy and unable to sleep.
“Currently Bowake (the nickname of victim) survive suffer from pain, trauma and have not received justice or recovery for the suffering they and their families suffered,” said Simon Soren of the Iwaro Student Youth and Student Association, who are members of Solidarity for Victims of Violence and Indigenous Peoples of Iwaro through their press release.
Mentioned in the statement, violence against indigenous Papuans by elements of the TNI-Polri in securing the area of ​​plantation business, mining, logging and other natural resources utilization efforts in Papua often occurs.
Violence against Iwaro tribal peoples in Puragi has been repeated throughout 2017.
“This incident occurred since Iwaro tribe in Puragi and the surrounding kampong, perform “customary barriers “on their customary land, forest and food hamlets, dismantled, evicted and eliminated by PT. PPM, without deliberation and approval of land owners,” he said.
In 2015, he continues, four locals – landowners were imprisoned after the demonstrations and protested to demand their rights which the company seized.
On that basis, the solidarity from 14 representatives denounced the brutal actions of the authorities.
“We ask the West Papua Provincial Government and South Sorong Regency, and West Papua Police Chief, to take immediate action. To investigate Brimob officers who are on duty at the location of plantation business, inspect and punish the perpetrators who are involved in such acts of violence, “said Franky Samperante, from the PUSAKA Foundation in Jakarta.
Solidarity also calls for a security, intimidation and violence approach to civil society to be stopped.
Minister of Agriculture, Minister of ATR / BPN, Ministry of Environment and Forestry, West Papua provincial government and South Sorong regency are also required to audit and sanction the activities and permits and business rights of all ANJ Group subsidiaries operating in the area.
 The company’s activities are suspected to involve several acts of violence and human rights abuses, as well as the taking off customary lands.
Seven clans garnered PT PPM activities
Since September, seven clans gathered in Puragi, namely the Gue, Atoare, Mengge, Bumere, Kawaine, Oropae 1, and Oropae 2 clans are customary to the activities of PT PPM in Ureko to Nyono.
They accused the company has not completed their obligations regarding the status of land and compensation for losses and loss of community life. The company is also considered to be non-transparent in discussing the empowerment program of socio-economic and cultural rights for the community.
Indigenous peoples of seven clans continue to organize corporate activities. This makes the tension between society and the company. The company also uses the “services” of Brimob personnel to watch in the company area.
Not infrequently these individuals commit acts of violence, intimidation and threatening citizens.

Violence against indigenous peoples

Beginning in October 2017, Head of Kampong Puragi, Nataniel Oropae together with the community of seven clans of landowners from Puragi, Sorong and Teminabuan (Sorsel) came to the contractor’s office (RPU), Kapiremi Hamlet, at Kilo 3, to demand that the company to pay the losses and land and yield rights of local forests damaged by the company.

It was rains and Nataniel took shelter beside the guard post. He reprimanded a Brimob officer who was at his side.

“Ade, what’s looking for?” Nataniel asked.
Instantly the officer was angry and threatened Nathaniel to hit him.
“Do not hit!” Said Nataiel, until the officer dropped his intention.
In the community dialogue with the company, which was attended by the authorities, there was no payment of customary land according to Gubernatorial Regulation Number 5. They only pay the wood cubic up to 30 up. While rattan, sago, rosin is not paid. People are disappointed and continue to protest.
The landowners in Kapiremi Hamlet, whose land was evicted by PT PPM without deliberations involving the wider community and landowners, Arnold Bumere, in October 2017 protested and posted a ban.
But he was greeted with intimidation. The incident happened in Logpond Jamarema.
A similar event was experienced by Edison Oropae, the owner land in the desert Ureko. He experienced verbal violence.
On October 23, 2017, Yan Ever Mengge met a company operator displacing land and forests in Kapiremi Hamlet. He wanted to inquire about the demands of the community regarding the payment of compensation for lost land and forest products, because, according to the company’s promise, it was realized on October 22, 2017.
Then he requested the company’s activities be stopped. Brimob officers came to the scene and asked the perpetrators. They also pursued Mengge, who is called the perpetrator of ill-treatment.
Unfortunately, the three officers beat and tortured Mengge with a long rifle to his knees. His back, his waist and knees hurt. “Brimob say, this is the day we kill you here. Brimob kicked me like a ball,” the story of Yan Ever Mengge.
He was taken to the company camp to be treated for some time. However, the bones and back of the body are still sick and often vomiting.
West Papua Police Chief Inspector General Pol Alberth Roja when confirmed per cellular on Thursday afternoon (November 23) has not provided clarification.
Jubi tried to send a short message via the cellular number but not yet replied. Similar thing was attempted to the company. But Jubi has not managed to ask for their clarification.(Timo Marten/Zely)


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