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Dealing with malnutrition and measles in Asmat

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Integrated Task Force Team on humanity evacuated 14 children with malnutrition and measles to RSUD Agats, Asmat Regency – Jubi/Ist.

Source: Koran Jubi

Jayapura, Jubi – When the attention of the central government was absorbed into the case of malnutrition and measles outbreaks in Asmat Regency, a similar incident that resulted 23 toddlers’ dead has been arisen from Pegunungan Bintang.

Integrated Humanity Task Force team has evacuated 14 children with malnutrition and measles from Atsi District to RSUD Agats in Asmat Regency, Papua, on Friday, January 19th.

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Head of the Papua Police Public Relations A.M Kamal said eleven of fourteen children are diagnosed with broken legs and hands, while two were infected with measles.

“The eleven patients were referred to the Agats Public Hospital using Polair Mimika Police vessel,” he said.

Before evacuating, a team of four personnel and one motorist delivered medical supplies and foodstuffs from Bhayangkari Region of Papua, Bank Papua, Bank BRI, and other agencies. The stuffs were include biscuits, milk for toddlers, mineral water, rice, and cooking oil.

Papua Police Head (Kapolda) Inspector General Boy Rafli Amar also briefly visited the Atsi sub district to observe the on the spot conditions, including to see the children who exposed to measles and Malaria and their mothers that were being treated in the Atsi Sub-district Health Center.

Kapolda said, the malnourished patients who had been evacuated by the task force team will get a better treatment.

As quoted by Antara, Kombes Pol A.M. Kamal explained that the Integrated Task Force of Polda Papua held a treatment for 472 Asmat people with measles and malnutrition who live in eight villages in Asmat District.

The treatments were conducted on Saturday, January 20th in two sub-districts, namely Aip Sub-district which consisted of Kampung Kawet, Mausi, Comoro, Satoyot, Tomor Airo-Airo and Awiyu Sub-district consisting of Sagare, Yepu and Wagi Villages.

“Of the 472 patients who received the treatment, ten were referred to Puskemas (health centre) Atsi with a diagnosis of measles, dehydration and malnutrition; and immunized citizens of 112 people. In early January there were five children who died there due to measles,” he said.

Outbreaks of measles and malnutrition that have occurred in Asmat Regency since September 2017 have caused 68 children and under-fives to die. This report caused Jakarta to be shocked then mobilize the team to overcome the situation.

Regent of Asmat Elisa Kambu acknowledged, since September 2017 Health Office of Asmat Regency records the presence of measles disease. But just 23 December they had received a report from the Bishop of Agats, Aloysius Murwito of the children who died in Kampung As, Pulau Tiga District.

“I myself also found a toddler who died and dozens of children suffering from measles and malnutrition in Kampung As and Atat, then I immediately had ordered the head of health office to overcome it,” said Kambu during a coordination meeting with the Presidential Staff Team (KSP), Health Ministry team, Ministry of Social Affairs, Papua Province, TNI and Papua Police on Wednesday, January 16th, as quoted by Antara.

According to the Regent his team had started work on January 1st to January 11th and has treated hundreds of patients with measles. A total of 393 of them were outpatients and 175 had to undergo hospitalization.

“There are obstacles that occur when dealing with this outbreak, there are only 12 doctors and one special doctor in Asmat,” he said.

From 16 health centres (Puskesmas) which are scattered, only seven have doctors. Lack of health equipment and distances far apart had contributed to the shocking number of victims.

Father Hendrik Huda, who accompanied the Presidential Staff Office (KSP) team, said that the district of Asmat is almost 90 percent water-covered and all its citizens spread across 23 districts (sub-districts) living on the banks of the river.

“Most of them live and eat directly from what nature had provide, looking for fish and sago, they often leave their houses by the paddle boats with their families down the river and make small huts to live for food, this livelihood that makes them need to go far to get good nutrition,” he said.

Meanwhile, Yan Akobiarek from the Remote Humanitarian Community Care (Kopkedat) of Papua asked the government not only to see the big problems that occurred in Papua such as the outbreak, but also the small problems.

“The smallest thing must be considered before it becomes a big problem,” he told Jubi in Jayapura, Wednesday (December 17).

According to Yan, what happens today is not only KLB in Asmat, but also in some areas in Papua such as Korowai which is also in the administrative area of ​​Asmat Regency.

“I take the example as in Baigon, Mabul, Amakot, Ayak and surrounding areas, many people are experiencing the same thing, but the case does not explode so that the various diseases were not known to many people,” he said.

When attention was drawn to health issues in Asmat District, it was reported that in Okbab District, Pegunungan Bintang District, malnutrition cases also occurred causing 23 infants to die in Kampung Pedam.

Reports received by the Papua Health Office are the under-five mortality occurring from December 6, 2017 to January 11, 2018. (*)

 

Editor: Zely Ariane

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Environment

Locals allege cement factory to cause dusty air pollution

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A resident lives near Maruni cement factory shows his soles of feet, merchandises and furniture covered by the black dust. – Jubi/Personal Doc.

Manokwari, Jubi – Residents of Dobut Village and other surrounding villages in Manokwari Selatan sub-district feel anxious concerning black dust scattered by the wind to their villages. They allege Maruni cement factory to cause this dusty air pollution.

The Village Chief of Dobut Septinus Aibu said hundreds of residents complained to have respiratory problems. Besides inhaling polluted air, the black dust now covers the roof of houses, get in the homes and pollutes everything inside.

“We have respiratory problems. It’s hard to breathe. There is thick dark haze during the day though it’s only the dust blown by the wind,” Septinus Aibu told Jubi in Manokwari on Wednesday (27/11/2019).

He further admitted to reporting his incident to the Provincial Environment and Land Office of West Papua. He hopes this relevant office will promptly follow up this report. However, his response has not yet responded, said Aibu.

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“I have met the official from the Provincial Environment Office, but I found no definitive answer,” he said.

In the meantime, a resident Slamet who lives in a location near Maruni cement factory also has a similar complaint. He said kiosks and food stalls along the road where the cement factory built fully covered of black dust. “Stalls and everything inside fills with dust; even it covers the floor of houses. It’s all full of black dust,” said Slamet.

In responding to this issue, Derek Ampnir, the Head of West Papua Provincial Disaster Management Agency (BPBD), confirmed Jubi by a short message on Wednesday that the agency will immediately address the alleged air pollution. “Where is the location? Okay, we’ll take action,” texted Ampnir.

The black dust incident that allegedly comes out from the manufacturing activity of Maruni cement factory has been viral on social media, including some photographs, showed the black dust. However, until the news is published, both representatives of the cement factory and local government official do not give any comments on this issue. (*)

 

Reporter: Hans Kapisa

Editor: Pipit Maizier

 

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Economy

Anticipating toxic spills in Papua New Guinea, DKP monitors fishermen’s catches at Hamadi fish landing

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Map of Papua Island showing the location of sea waters in Basamuk, Madang, Papua New Guinea. – Google Maps

Jayapura, Jubi – The Office of Fisheries and Maritime Affairs (DKP) of Jayapura Municipality continues to monitor local fishermen’s catches at Hamadi fish landing following the toxic spills in Madang, Papua New Guinea. Municipal DKP took a few samples of fish to a laboratory for further research whether the incident would impact to the local catchment or fishing ground areas.

The Head of Jayapura Municipal DKP Martheys Sibi said by Monday, his office is still waiting for a clarification from the Indonesian Ministry of Maritime and Fisheries (KKP-RI). “But, based on our observations, so far [the condition of] Hamadi Fish Landing (PPI Hamadi) runs as usual. Fishing activities at the local fishing ground by local fishermen have not yet had a significant impact,” he told Jubi when asked for confirmation via WhatsApp on Monday (18/11/2018).

Sibi further said by Monday the local fishermen continue to bring their catches to sell in PPI Hamadi and such fishes look normal. “However, we will continue to monitor the impact of nickel waste (on fish and catchment areas) while waiting for a follow-up from KKP-RI in Jakarta,” said Sibi.

Moreover, he said the fish monitoring in PPI Hamadi would keep running while awaiting the result from the laboratory. “If there would be a complaint from fishermen (about their catches), such fish would be taken to the laboratory for testing. We have communicated with the Fish Quarantine and Quality Analysis Centre of KKP in Sentani, Papua, to examine a few samples of fish from fishermen,” he said.

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Earlier, the sea waters in Basamuk, Madang, Papua New Guinea has reportedly been contaminated by waste spills from China-owned nickel mining company. A report published by Dr Alex Mojon said pollution from Chinese-owned Nickel Ramu has caused fish to die around Madang sea. (*)

 

Reporter: Sindung Sukoco

Editor: Pipit Maizier

 

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Headlines

Thousands of Papuan joins the rally condemning racism

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Lukas Enembe, the governor of Papua Province talks to thoousands protester in Jayapura. – Supplied

Jubi, Papua – Monday, 19 Augusts 2019. Thousands of students from the Faculty of Social and Political Science of the University of Cenderawasih closed the university’s gate, the only access to its Waena Campus in Perumnas 3, Heram Sub-district of Jayapura Municipality.

The gate became the point of a mass rally in responding to the acts of violence and racism against Papuan students in Malang and Surabaya a few days ago. In addition to the University of Cenderawasih, masses also gathered at some points in Expo Waena, the University of Science and Technology Jayapura, Abepura suburb and Jayapura City

Thousands of Papuan communities of different backgrounds ranging from students, KNPB activists, community-based organisations, the association of regional student dormitories in Jayapura, and ordinary people including children, joined the rally. Their number grew bigger and bigger as people united the crowd on the road. Walking and riding motorbikes, they walked towards the governor’s office located in the central of Jayapura City.

Before reaching their end, first, the crowd stopped by the office of Papua’s People Assembly (MRP) in Kotaraja. There, Victor Yeimo, the KNPB spokesperson for international affairs, asked assembly members to join the crowd.

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“If MRP wants to protect the dignity of Papuans, let’s join us. Indonesia mocked us by calling Papuans ‘monkey’. This humiliation was not coming from the local mob, but soldiers and the police as well,” said Yeimo, who was the General Chairman of the Central KNPB in his five-minutes oration.

The crowd then continued their long march passing Skyland and Entrop roads. All Papuans whose houses nearby were very supportive of the protesters by giving bottled mineral water. They also showed their support by clenching their hand and yelling ‘free Papua nation’. Along the road, people chanted “we are nor red and white, but the morning star” and yell out ‘freedom’ and ‘referendum for Papua’, while around hundreds of police and dozens of military personnel stayed close to them.

When the crowd arrived in Taman Imbi in the central of Jayapura City, hundreds of protesters made up activists, residents and youth communities have waited for them. Meanwhile, hundreds of police officers also deployed to the scene. All stores and shopping centres in Jayapura City mostly closed.

The city almost entirely occupied by indigenous people. Only one or two non-Papuans appeared standing near the protesters. Jayapura City, the centre of business where homes for mostly non-Papuans, seemed entirely belong to Papuans. “This is our land. If they call us ‘monkey’, Indonesia must get out from here,” yelled the crowd.

Finally, the crowd arrived in the governor’s office where Governor Lukas Enembe already waited. It took seven hours for them to walk 16 kilometres from Waena to the governor’s office. Here, students, youth and customary leaders alternately gave speeches in front of the crowd.

People incessantly hailed the name of Victor Yeimo asking him to speak. Along with some other activities, he got on the stage. The audience cheered on him. “Papuaaaa?” he screamed over the crowd. “Freedom!” the group replied. He repeated the same yell three times.

In front of the crowd, Yeimo stated that today was a big moment for Papuans. People gathered together for not only about racism against Papuan students in Java, but many factors that accumulated into Papuans’ outrage.

“We are gathering here for not only because we are called ‘monkey’. Moreover, but also justice for our brothers in Nduga who fled to the jungle. We urge the Indonesian government to investigate the human rights violations that had never settled. We ask them to stop exploiting our natural resources and forests!” said Yeimo. Further, he said Papuan people no longer care about infrastructure development because it was not what they asked. “Road constructions have damaged our forest! What about Special Autonomy? Does it give us benefits for the last 19 years running in Papua,” he added.

Then, the Papuan Governor Lukas Enembe got on the stage to express his anxiety on what was happening to Papuan students in East Java. We are not descendants of apes. Therefore, I deeply regret why in Indonesia, which is already 74 years old, there are people still acting small-minded like that. Malaysia is a lot better, though they are from the same root, Malay,” he said.

In addition to his children who are studying overseas, he said his administration sends more than a thousand Papuan students to study abroad. “So, we have dignity. I stated to the Governor of East Java that Papuans love Gus Dur (former president from East Java origin – red) as he loved us. Gus Dur was very protective towards Papuans in East Java. Why did Banser (Ansor Front) not deployed to calm down the mob persecuting Papuan students yesterday?” he questioned.

Moreover, Enembe also released a five-points statement on behalf of the Papuan Government. First, it says that the Provincial Government of Papua expresses its anxiety and concern about the incidents in Surabaya, Semarang and Malang, which caused the arrest of Papuan students by security forces. The provincial government also appreciates the legal enforcement by the security force when it’s done proportionally, professional and fairly. The security forces were expected not to neglect persecution or any vigilant acts either by groups or individuals that potentially hurt the feeling of Papuans. People should avoid doing oppressive actions that can cause casualties, political conflicts and destroy the spirit of nationalism among citizens.

Second, Papua is the territory of the Republic of Indonesia, known as the real miniature of Indonesia. It represents the diversity of Indonesian multi-ethnic, cultures, and religions living in harmony. The indigenous people of Papua welcome and treat non-Papuans with respect and equality. Therefore, we wish that Papuans are treated in the same respect in many parts of Indonesia. This should become our mutual commitment as a nation to create a peaceful Indonesia that politically, economically and culturally safe for everyone.

Third, the Provincial Government of Papua asks all Papuan communities in Papua Province and other provinces in Indonesia to respond to the incidents in Surabaya, Semarang and Malang appropriately without any single act violating the cultural norms and laws.

Four, we expect non-Papuan communities throughout Indonesia to maintain peace and not to conduct unconstitutional acts such as persecution, oppression, racism, discrimination, intolerance and other actions that can harm the feeling of Papuan communities and disturb the tolerance and harmony among citizens. In our 74th anniversary, we should not let the acts of intolerance, racism and discrimination in our country.

Finally, as the Governor of Papua, I invite all governors, regents, and mayors throughout Indonesia to protect Papuan students who studying in their regions, as much as we do to non-Papuan students and communities in our region. This is our mutual effort to prevent a similar incident occurred in the future as well as to maintain our nationalism, unity and togetherness as a nation.

Meanwhile, the General Chairman of the Central KNPB Agus Kossay stated the rally was a manifestation of Papuan peoples’ perception towards the meaning of 74 years of Indonesian independence which they found it useless due to racism. It shows that Papua is not part of Indonesia. They said we were monkeys. And the statement came from military and police culprits. So, lets us get out of Indonesia,” he said.

Further, he continued that they want all Papuan students studying in Java will be guaranteed safe. “If there is no guarantee, a similar incident might be repeated. When it happens, it would be better sending them home,” he said.

People were still gathering in the lawn of the governor’s office until 6 p.m. They were gradually dispersed and going home at around 7 p.m. (*)

 

Reporter: Kristianto Galuwo
Editor: Pipit Maizier

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