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Help Us Fight for Independence – West Papua Calls on Ghana

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Benny Wenda met former President of Ghana John Kufuor - Supplied

Benny Wenda met former President of Ghana John Kufuor – Supplied

Jayapura, Jubi – The people of West Papua are sending desperate calls on government officials and leaders of Ghana to assist them in their bid to join the United Nations.

Nobel peace prize nominee and Spokesperson for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP), Chief Benny Wenda joined Ghanaians to mark Ghana’s 59th independence anniversary on 6th March, 2016.

During his stay, he interacted with prominent people in the country, including Reverend Dr Fred Deegbe, former head of the Christian Council of Ghana (CCG), and former presidents Kufuor and Rawlings.

Reverend Deegbe prayed for the people of West Papua and Chief Benny Wenda for his visit to Ghana. “God made people and wants people everywhere to be free”. He also promised to raise the issue of West Papua at an upcoming church meetings in the USA.

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Rev Deegbe who is a Senior Pastor at the Calvary Baptist Church served the CCG as General Secretary from July 2003 until April 2013.

In a meeting with former President John Agyekum Kufuor and former AU Chair, the former president pledged support for the liberation of the people of West Papua. “It is important that humanity should be central to everything. As a human being you are entitled to humanity.

In due course humanity will prevail and you will be free.” “The whole world will support you. Not even Indonesia can stop it” “Ghana was once a colony for 100 years, Nkrumah was our liberator, he was a pan africanist and you see yourselves as Africans. What you are doing is the right way.

The photos of your people bear witness to a true leader of your people. Some of our paramount chiefs wear feathers. The same but eagle feathers. Despite the distances between our places we are the same. Clearly you are not Indonesian.”

Former President Jerry John Rawlings has also pledged his support to fight for the independence of the West Papuans. He said “we are honoured to fight for your people. We share a similar history.”

“It is no surprise to me that you had support from Ghana at the UN in 1969 and that we accepted West Papuan refugees in the 1980’s. West Africa has seen slavery, colonial struggles and independence”

“Chief you find yourself in a very painful situation. I suggest that you contact and lobby every congressman, senator and parliamentarian. The European Commission, the AU and all organisations. Keep knocking and knock again, don’t let them sleep”

“We will contribute by reminding them who is still colonised”

Keep fighting

Benny Wenda met former President of Ghana, Jerry John Rawlings - Jubi

Benny Wenda met former President of Ghana, Jerry John Rawlings – Jubi

Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings, former President of Ghana made the statements when he met with Chief Benny Wenda, spokesman for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) and Nobel Peace prize nominee.

All across Africa and around the world people are finding out about Indonesia’s Genocide and illegal colonisation of West Papua. West Papua has a legal right to self determination, de colonisation and independence.

West Papua is the western half of the Melanesian island of New Guinea, in the Pacific Ocean, bordering the independent nation of Papua New Guinea (PNG). It lies just 200km north of Australia and the indigenous Melanesian people have lived there for over 40,000 years.

West Papua was colonised by the Dutch in 1898 and always administered as “Dutch New Guinea” separate from their “Dutch East Indies” which is now Indonesia. With the promise of independence on 1st December 1970 and on 1st December 1961, the West Papuan national flag was raised with the beginnings of a democratically elected government formed, announcing a 9 year period of peaceful transition towards independence.

Politics before Papuans But within months the dream was dead. The newly independent state of Indonesia wanted access to West Papua’s vast wealth and the military promptly invaded West Papua. Conflict broke out between the Netherlands, Indonesia and the indigenous population regarding control of the territory.

Due to US’ fear that failing to appease Indonesia could result in the spread of South East Asian communism, the US government intervened and engineered an agreement between Indonesia and the Netherlands, which in 1962 gave control of West Papua to the United Nations and one year later transferred control to Indonesia.

The Papuans were never consulted and after a sham referendum in 1969 with 1026 people handpicked Papuans being forced to vote for Indonesian sovereignty, West Papua officially became part of Indonesia.

The military occupation and secret genocide The West Papuan people never accepted Indonesia in their country and ever since 1963, have resisted Indonesian rule, first with bows and arrows and what little guns they could and then with peaceful civil resistance.

The people of West Papua have regularly organise mass protests for self determination and independence and continue to appeal to the international community from speaking out through media to diplomatic pleas by exiled Papuans.

Through a vast wealth of natural resources, like the largest goldmine on Earth (Grasberg), West Papua has become Indonesia’s largest GDP contributor, and with the prospect of an independent West Papua looking with international support, Indonesia does not want Papuans telling the outside world the truth.

Not only has the Indonesian government banned all foreign journalists and human rights groups from West Papua but the Indonesian military and police also systematically target any West Papuans campaigning for independence and brands them as “separatists” and “terrorists”. (*)

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A story of Ruth Dolly Pagawak, Papuan woman who recovered from Covid-19

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Ruth Dolly Pagawak. -Jubi/Hans

Manokwari, Jubi – Ruth Dolly Pagawak, twenty years old Papuan woman who declared negatives after two swab checks, could go home. She finally can meet her baby and the rest of her family on Saturday afternoon, 16 May 2020 after being quarantined at Papua Barat Provincial Hospital.

Along with Pagawak, other patients H. Abdullah Appe (62 years old) and La Marra (65 years old) were also declared has recovered from the Coronavirus. Papua Barat Governor Dominggus Mandacan officially take three of them out of the hospital.

While wearing a mask and holding her health certificate tightly, Pagawak told that her recovery is God’s blessing. “This is because of the grace of Lord Jesus that I was declared recovered of the Coronavirus,” said Pagawak holding a bucket of flowers by her doctors and nurses.

During her medical treatment at the hospital, Pagawak always listened to doctors and the medical team who treated her. She declared that listening to the government and medical staffs’ advice during the treatment is very important. By doing that, the body immune will stronger to combat the virus.

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“During my treatment, I routinely consumed vitamins and complied the doctors’ orders. I was also tried not being stressful because I believed that I would recover,” she said.

Since she was tested positive of Coronavirus in the mid of April, Pagawak has not experienced the most severe symptom. She claimed to only experience light symptoms such as cough and runny nose.

“I never experienced severe symptoms such as shortness of breath. I just had a cold and a mild cough.”

As the first Papuan woman who recovers from Coronavirus in Papua Barat, Pagawak advised people, in particular native Papuans, not to underestimate this virus. Still, they also do not need to overwhelm panic.

“The point is we must remain vigilant. Wear a mask, wash our hand routinely and get enough rest. We cannot avoid this virus because it is not visible. Therefore, we must follow all medical advice by the government, and never forget to pray and beg for mercy and recovery from God,” she said.

Pagawak told that she initially didn’t believe in her initial test confirming that she was Coronavirus positive because she was in the postpartum period. But with the support and permission of her husband, she finally agreed to take an initial medical treatment at Manokwari Hospital separately from her baby. She then continued to quarantine at Papua Barat Provincial Hospital since 1 May.

“I initially didn’t believe that I am Coronavirus positive. I just delivered my first child, who was six weeks at the time. So, when they took my baby and me from Warmare Subdistrict to Manokwari Hospital, we were treated separately,” she said.

This young mother also thanked the quarantine team of Papua Barat Provincial Hospital because of treating her and other patients sincerely and pouring them with encouragement and motivation.

“Personally, I thank the medical team, doctors and everybody who involved in Papua Barat Provincial Hospital. They are noble-hearted people because they treated us nicely. They are warm and always motivate us; therefore, we remain motivated to recover,” she said.

The information from the Covid-19 Task Force Papua Barat stated that Pagawak’s baby is currently undergoing treatment by a paediatrician at Manokwari Hospital. The baby, on the contrary, was declared negative since the initial examination and treated separately from the mother.
Meanwhile, Papua Barat Governor Dominggus Mandacan hopes that local community and neighbours of the recovered patients to accept them when they return to their family and neighbourhood.

“I hope people can accept them when they return to their family. Their recovery was also the hard work of the Papua Barat Provincial medical staff as well as our prayers,” said Mandacan at the Papua Barat Hospital on Saturday (16/5/2020). (*)

 

 

Reporter: Hans Kapisa

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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Joyce Lin, a pilot of MAF crashed plane was also an IT specialist graduate from MIT

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Joyce Lin. – maf.org

Jayapura, Jubi – An aircraft operated by Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) was reportedly being crashed and drown in Lake Sentani on Tuesday (12/5/2020). Locals reported the incident after hearing an explosion. After two minutes take-off from Sentani Airport to Mamit, Tolikara Regency, the aircraft lost contact with the air traffic control tower.

Tolikara Regent Usman Wanimbo told Jubi that the crashed aircraft was possibly carrying books and stationeries for Yayasan Papua Harapan based in Mamit. President GIDI, the Rev. Dorman Wandikbo, also said the same thing.

“The aircraft was carrying school books and stationeries to Mamit,” said the Rev. Wandikbo by phone to Jubi. The pilot of the crashed plane later identified as Joyce Lin, a US citizen. Her body found at a depth of 13 meters in Lake Sentani.

Joyce, according to the Rev. Wandikbo, had just flown in Papua, although she had many experiences flying the small aircraft.

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The website maf.org acknowledges Joyce Lin as a pilot and IT specialist. As a pilot, she flew the aircraft to help people living in remote and isolated areas by providing medical evacuation service for saving a life. She also transported logistic supplies for community development, missionaries, teachers, and humanitarian workers to these remote locations. Meanwhile, as an IT specialist, Joyce work to set up and maintain the computer networks for missionaries and humanitarian workers to contact their communities and to access information on the Internet.

Joyce Lin grew up in Colorado and Maryland. She involved in a non-denomination local evangelist church service from a young age. At the age of eight, she showed her interest in everything linked with computers, mainly computer programming. Her interest in aviation also developed at an early age when her neighbouring pilot took her to the local air show.

She later took the computer science in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and received a Bachelor of Science and Masters of Engineering from the MIT. Because she had an interest in aviation, she also obtained a certificate of the private pilot while still in college.

After graduation, Joyce Lin worked as a computer specialist at a commercial company for ten years until obtaining a position of the Director of Engineering, while growing her enthusiasm towards seminary at the same time. She then registered as a student at the Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and graduated with a Master of Divinity. While studying theology there, she learned about the missionary flying service. It surprised her when knowing that there is a job that can combine her interest in computers, aviation and Christianity service at once. From there, she found a strong call to work as a missionary pilot. She had instrument certification and commercial flying certificate and experience working as a flight instructor to meet the requirement as a pilot for MAF. (*)

 

Reporter: Victor Mambor

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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The body of crashed MAF aircraft found 13 meters below water

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Lake Sentani. -Ist

Jayapura, Jubi – Roberth Tunyanan from KNKT (the National Transportation Safety Committee) Papua said the body of a pilot killed in the crashed aircraft was found in Lake Sentani on Tuesday morning.

“I received the report stating the Rescue Team had found the body of MAF pilot flying the aircraft PK-MEC in Lake Sentani,” Tunyanan as quoted by Antara News Agency on Tuesday morning (12/5/2020).

The report also revealed that her body found at a depth of 13 meters trapped in the cockpit.

The website maf.org acknowledges Joyce Lin as a pilot and IT specialist. As a pilot, she flew the aircraft to help people living in remote and isolated areas by providing medical evacuation service for saving a life. She also transported logistic supplies for community development, missionaries, teachers, and humanitarian workers to these remote locations. Meanwhile, as an IT specialist, Joyce work to set up and maintain the computer networks for missionaries and humanitarian workers to contact their communities and to access information on the Internet.

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The aircraft controlled by Joyce Lin reportedly crashed around Lake Sentani that located between Jayapura Municipality and Jayapura Regency in Papua Province. The aeroplane took off at 6.27 a.m. local time and lost contact two minutes after take-off. (*)

 

Reporter: Victor Mambor

Editor: Pipit Maizier

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