Jayapura, Jubi – Papua Governor Lukas Enembe consulted an ultimatum against PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) management and its subcontractors to reinstate 8,300 striking employees immediately.
This statement revealed by the Head of Labor Inspection Office of the Papua Manpower Office, Melkianus Bosawer, in Timika on Thursday (14 /02/2019). He said the governor gave a deadline of two weeks for PTFI to follow up the letter.
“The governor expects that the Mimika Regional Government, the regent and parliament members and all relevant offices of Mimika Regency to follow up this issue seriously. The problem of employment occurs in Papua, not in Jakarta. So, if within two weeks, the management of Freeport does not respond to the governor’s letter, we will report this issue to the governor,” he said as quoted by Antara News Agency.
Regarding the labour issue of PTFI that have been taking place since May 2017, the Manpower Office of Papua has sent labour inspectors to conduct investigations and inspections in Timika since May 2018. The results state that the strike by the employees of PTFI and its subcontractors in May 2017 was legal.
Meanwhile, related to the labour inspectors’ recommendation, the management of PTFI has been given seven days to clarify, but until now they have not yet submitted the requested data related to the labour issue.
Based on that, he said, Governor Enembe issued a decree covered three points, namely order the management of PTFI and other subcontractor companies to immediately pay wages and provide the right of workers who did a strike as included in the Collective Labour Agreement Handbook 2015-2017 and the Industrial Relations Guidelines.
Moreover, PTFI is asked to immediately reinstate all former employers on strike and prohibited from recruiting new employees before the employment issue is completely solved. The governor also stressed that there was no more negotiation with the management of PTFI regarding the issue of on-strike employees.
“There are too many victims; 41 employees who joined the strike died, whereas other employees cannot access the health services because the company blocked it,” said Bosawer.
He added the governor’s attitude toward this issue driven by a humanitarian concern to many problems faced by the on-strike employees, given that more than two years 8,300 employees have not found a better solution to their problem. However, Papua Provincial Government suggested the former employees do not conduct any acts that possibly taken by PTFI to the court.
On the other hand, he said, the government is also ready if they should face PTFI in the court to stand for the right of thousands of employees who unilaterally dismissed by the company under the pretext of voluntary resigning.
Separately, Freeport spokesperson Riza Pratama said the former employees are part of around 3,500 workers of PTFI whose their contract has terminated due to prolonged absence. Based on labour regulation, they qualify to be considered resigned.
“The company have conducted some efforts to call these employees to return to work, including an announcement in newspaper and radio, advertisement, poster, a letter via the community letter, and direct letter to the employees calling them to work. However, only a small portion of them answer this calling,” said Riza Pratama. (*)
Reporter: Victor Mambor
Editor: Pipit Maizier
Polish man charged over links to Papua arms deal to appear in court
Papua, Jubi – The trial of a Polish man charged with treason for allegedly supplying arms to Papuan rebel fighters continues today.
Indonesian prosecutors have demanded 10 years’ jail for Jakub Skrzypski, who was arrested in August last year.
According to his lawyer Jakub Skyrzypski was a tourist who wanted to see the culture, customs and history of Papua.
Instead, he was detained and charged on suspicion of arranging an arms deal with the West Papua Liberation Army, a rebel group which is waging war on state forces.
Mr Skrzypski’s lawyer, Latifah Anum Siregar told the Wamena city court on Wednesday he hasn’t committed a crime by meeting with the armed group, according to a copy of her plea.
The public prosecutor, who has called on ten witnesses in the trial, will respond in court on Thursday.
Judges will deliver a verdict after final responses from both sides on Monday.
Mr Skrzypski is being charged alongside his co-defendant, West Papuan student Simon Carlos Magal, who was arrested in September. (*)
A sad story of education from Papuan outreached and border areas
Jayapura, Jubi – Education, in Papua today is still a sad story since many schools in outreached or border areas have to struggle to continue their activities even without adequate support from the government.
An educational activist Agustinus Kadepa said the education in Papua, especially in the border and outreached areas, is a complex issue, from the lack of teachers’ attendance to lack of teaching facilities that hampers the learning activities at school.
“This is complicated. Furthermore, we know that a good and qualified educational education could exist when it gains support from many aspects, namely the economy, educational facilities, public awareness of education and so on. Therefore, I think these factors have made many teachers prefer to live in town rather than in those remote areas,” said Kadepa on Thursday (24/1/2019).
Another factor is when teachers apply for the position of civil servants. It has an indirect impact on the number of teachers staying at schools, especially in remote areas. Because most of those teachers would accept the new position as a civil servant and choose to live in town rather than continue teaching in remote areas.
Meanwhile, this problem also considered by the village chief of Kampung Moso, Muara Tami Sub-district of Jayapura Municipality, Agus Watapoa. He said that all the time the primary schools of the Indonesian and PNG border have not a sufficient number of teachers. Therefore, the children are neglected and cannot study at school.
“Teachers who teach in this school village come late to school, at 10 in the morning. So this school is not well running. It’s still open but just not running very well because we only have two classes with a roof,” he said. (*)
Reporter: Agus Pabika
Editor: Pipit Maizier
Improper spatial planning behind forest dispute, says activist
Jayapura, Jubi – A representative of the Indigenous Peoples Coalition Emanuel Gobay said improper regional spatial planning might a factor that cause many disputes of timber and forest management in Papua.
Besides the implementation of spatial planning often differed from it should be, it was also not involving indigenous peoples in its preparation.
“As a result, it is often the indigenous lands (forests) acknowledged as the property of timber companies. We hope that in the future indigenous peoples will be involved so that they will be able to speak about their rights,” said Emanuel Gobay in the discussion on the forest issues that held in the room of Papuan Parliament on Friday (25/1/2019).
Moreover, he said that sometimes regulations could be overlapping one to another. Therefore, he urged the government to revise the existing regional regulation about spatial planning, or at least review it.
Meanwhile, regarding the spatial planning, Papuan legislator John NR Gobay said he would communicate with the Regional Development Planning Agency of Papua.
“Well, it’s because if we talk about the spatial planning, it’s a scope of the Regional Development Planning Agency. And what becomes a problem now is there is no NSPK (norm, standard, procedure and criteria) issued yet,” said Gobai. (*)
Reporter: Arjuna pademee
Editor: Pipit Maizier
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