PON Papua Host Makes History

Gold medalist Cornelius Amo (center) from Papua, Silver medalist Jefry Johanis Wuaten (left) from Central Sulawesi and Bronze medalist Slamet Junaidi (right) from DKI Jakarta, take the podium during the 60 kilogram category bodybuilding medal ceremony PON Papua at the Auditorium of Cenderawasih University, Jayapura, Papua, Monday (4/10/2021). (ANTARA PHOTOS)

MIMIKA, PAPUA – The 20th National Game (PON XX) 2021 held in Papua continued to spring more surprises. This time the surprise came from host contingent, Papua, that not only has succeeded in organizing the event, but also in achieving new achievements recorded by its athletes.

As soon as the National games is officially opened by President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo at Lukas Enembe Stadium, Kampung Harapan, East Sentani District, Jayapura Regency, on Saturday (2/10/2021), the host contingent immediately spurred with extraordinary achievements. As per Tuesday (5/10/2021), 7 pm Eastern Indonesian time, the sports heroes of Bumi Cendrawasih (the land of the bird-of-paradise) have won 32 gold, 15 silver, and 34 bronze medals. This achievement put Papua in second place in the medal standings.

Papua was only second to DKI Jakarta, 11-times PON champion. The capital province sit at the top of medal standing with 38 gold, 25 silver, and 31 bronze medals, and remained the strongest competitor.  

Meanwhile, West Java, the PON 2016 champion, was in third place with 29 gold, 26 silver, and 35 bronze medals. Following West Java was East Java in fourth. The two-times PON champion has collected 22 gold, 25 silver, and 20 bronze medals. Central Java was on the fifth position with 10 gold, 20 silver, and 21 bronze medals.

The achievements recorded by its best athletes is a new history for Bumi Cendrawasih. Previously, Papua has never won more than 30 gold medals throughout its participation in PON.  In fact, it is very difficult for the province to make it to the top three although it is one of the “producers” of potential national and world-class athletes.

Throughout the history of PON, Papua’s best achievements in winning gold medals were in 1985, 1989, and 2004 where they received 23 gold medals. Since then, Papua has never succeeded in achieving more than 23 gold medals during PON. However, now, as the host of this year’s PON, Papua took the opportunity to score the highest possible scores. 

“It is difficult to pass the top teams like DKI Jakarta. But I hope that Papua can maintain their position until the end (of PON). With our athletes’ talents, Papua can definitely do it,” said Youth and Sports Minister Zainuddin Amali during a press conference at the Ministry of Communication and Informatics’ (Kominfo) PON Papua Mimika Cluster Media Center at the Grand Mozza Hotel, Timika City, Monday (04/10/2021). 

The Papua branch of the National Sports Council (KONI Papua) targeted to bring home 84 gold medals at this year’s PON, a target which is significantly higher than  their last achievement in  PON 2016 of 17 gold. “We are keen on winning 84 golds at PON 2021,” KONI Papua executive secretary Kenius Kogoya while accompanying the Youth and Sports Minister. 

This target is not unrealistic, as the PON 2016 host, West Java, also set a fantastic target and managed to exceed the target. At that time, the province fantastically won 217 gold, 157 silver, and 157 bronze medals. This achievement far exceeds its achievement  four years earlier in PON Riau 2012.  

In 2012, Bumi Pasundan (West Java) only managed to bring home 99 gold, 79 silver, and 101 bronze medals. While Riau as the then host was able to win 43 gold, 39 silver, and 51 bronze which brought them to the sixth place. East Kalimantan also has similar experience when the province hosted PON 2008. 

The mineral-rich province surprisingly occupied the third position with 116 gold, 111 silver, and 115 bronze medals in 2008, while previously only won  19 gold, 28 silver, and 19 bronze medals in PON 2004 in South Sumatra .

So far, Papua’s medal achievement at PON 2021 has been outstanding and the contingent’s chances of bringing more medals home are wide open, especially since this quadrennial sporting event is still ongoing until 15  October. 

Moreover, in the medal standings, only a total of 179 gold, 175 gold, and 248 bronze have been distributed. Whereas the PON Papua Grand Committee prepared 681 gold, 681 silver, and 681 bronze, respectively.

The PON Papua 2021 is attended by 7,039 athletes and 3,576 officials from 34 provinces. These athletes will be competing in 37 different types of sports, 56 disciplines, 681 matches held in 44 venues located in four clusters prepared for the event. 

All the matches held in this event are conducted with strict health protocols, both for athletes, officials, and spectators. “The implementation of PON Papua has been very good and professional. The people are very friendly,” said West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil. West Java is the champion of the 2016 PON. Torang bisa (We can)!

Source: INDONESIA.CO.ID / InfoPublik.id

PON Infrastructure Changes the Face of Papua

Papua Governor Lukas Enembe said he hoped that all infrastructure developed for the Games could become an opportunity for reviving Papua in all aspects, in both sports and economics.

The splendor of the Lukas Enembe Stadium complex in Harapan Village, Nolokla Village, East Sentani District, Jayapura Regency, Papua, Tuesday (28/9/2021).

The image of a backward Papua province has slowly faded with the construction of magnificent infrastructure facilities for the National Games Papua 2021 currently being held in the province.

JAYAPURA, KOMPAS – The National Games (PON) Papua 2021 has changed the face of Papua, especially in host regions such as Jayapura city, Jayapura regency, Mimika regency, and Merauke regency. The image that the province nicknamed “Bumi Cenderawasih” (the earth of the birds-of-paradise) is being left behind has begun to disappear following the construction of magnificent sports infrastructures for the quadrennial sporting event.

Three large buildings with contrasting shapes stand among the residential areas and shop houses on the road from the Sentani Airport, Jayapura regency, to the Kampung Harapan area, about 10 kilometers away.

The three buildings are the Istora Lukas Enembe indoor sports arena, Lukas Enembe Aquatic Center, and Lukas Enembe Stadium. The three buildings, located in the Lukas Enembe Sports complex, are new and modern sports arenas built specially for the Games.

Lukas Enembe Aquatic Center is the second largest international-standard pool complex in the country after the Senayan Aquatic Center in Central Jakarta. The building is also the third modern indoor aquatic arena after the Jakabaring Aquatic Center in Palembang, South Sumatra, and the Senayan Aquatic Center. Licensed by the International Swimming Federation (FINA) last year, all records made there are internationally recognized.

Lukas Enembe Stadium is considered the largest football stadium in eastern Indonesia. The stadium has fully enclosed stands with a 40,000 seating capacity. Public Works and Housing (PUPR) Minister Basuki Hadimuljono said in Jayapura on Friday (1/10/2021) that he hoped the local governments in the four regions hosting the Games could maintain the newly built sporting facilities, such as by holding local championships.

In hosting the quadrennial sporting event, visitors could see that Papua had great development potential, the governor added.

Papua Governor Lukas Enembe said he hoped that all infrastructure developed for the Games could become an opportunity for reviving Papua in all aspects, in both sports and economics. In hosting the quadrennial sporting event, visitors could see that Papua had great development potential, the governor added.

Colorful lights illuminate the Youtefa Red Bridge, which connects the Trans Papua Road in Jayapura, Papua, Thursday (30/9/2021).

Meanwhile, the strategic infrastructure director at the PUPR’s Directorate General of Human Settlements, Iwan Suprijanto, said on Friday (24/9) that the ministry had been tasked with building eight PON sports facilities, namely the Aquatic Center, main stadium, cricket field, indoor and outdoor hockey fields, roller skating circuit, as well as the archery and rowing venues.

According to Iwan, the local government proposed a Rp 1.7 trillion construction budget for the sports infrastructure. With some adjustments, the development cost was reduced to Rp 900 billion.

The PUPR Ministry also took part in arranging the areas around the Lukas Enembe Aquatic Arena and Istora, as well as in the cricket and hockey arenas in Doyo Baru village, Waibu district, Jayapura regency, at a cost of Rp 211.7 billion.

The Aquatic Center had the largest construction costs reaching Rp 401 billion, while the construction of the other sports infrastructure, such as the Istora, cost Rp 278.5 billion, the cricket and hockey arena Rp 288.3 billion, followed by the rowing arena, archery, and roller skating venues at Rp 128.2 billion.

The captain of the Jakarta women’s water polo team, Ariel Dyah Cininda Siwabessy (27), did not expect Papua would be able to build such a magnificent aquatic center. According to her, the Papua Aquatic Center is no different from the Senayan Aquatic Center, except that it has a lower seating capacity and warmer water.

In addition to building the sports arenas, the government has also prepared supporting infrastructure such as roads and bridges. One of the most iconic is the Youtefa Bay Red Bridge in Jayapura city, located not far from the PON rowing venue.

Randy Sambono (27), a resident of Abepura, Jayapura regency, acknowledged that many changes had taken place in Papua ahead of the quadrennial sports event. “I am also proud because my hometown could be developed like other areas in Indonesia,” said the Javanese-Maluku man, who was born in Jayapura.

In Mimika, the central and regional governments had widened the main roads in Timika from 5 meters to 10 meters over the last three years. According to Nauval Latuapo (46), an Ambonese native who has lived in Timika for 20 years, the main roads in Papua were now more orderly and cleaner.

Papuan football star, Boaz Solossa, carries the fire torch of National Sports Week (PON) Papua 2021 to the Mayor Office of Jayapura, Papua, Friday (1/10/2021).

The residents were very grateful for this, because it minimized road congestion. “Now, the vehicle [flow] is faster. The city is also growing. We hope this can fuel further economic growth here,” said Nauval.

The private sector has also supported the Games. PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) president director Clayton Allen Wenas said on Friday that the copper mining giant had contributed to the success of PON by providing sports infrastructure, athlete training facilities, bonuses for Papuan medal-winners, and Covid-19 mitigation.

PTFI built the Mimika Sports Complex (MSC), which will host the basketball and athletics events. The marathon and race walking events were also held at the PTFI area in Kuala Kencana.

According to Wenas, PTFI constructed the MSC construction in 2014-2016 at a cost of Rp 468 billion. The MSC will be inaugurated on 5 Oct. PTFI also provided Rp 15 billion in sponsorship for the Games.

Source: KOMPAS