Rapid Infrastructure and Human Resource Development Proof of Indonesia’s Commitment to Papuan Development

Under President Joko Widodo, the government has shown strong commitment for developing the less developed areas in Eastern Indonesia, including Papua. Based on Presidential Instruction No. 9 Year 2020 on the Acceleration of Welfare Development in Papua, tangible results in the form of rapid infrastructure development in the region since 2014 are evident. The drive for improving connectivity in order to open up isolated areas, reducing prices, and increasing the quality of life of Papuans has led to large-scale construction projects including roads, power plants, schools, as well as efforts to improve human resources in the region.

Construction of a sports arena for the 2020 PON in Papua Province

One of the government’s most ambitious projects is the Trans Papua Highway which, according to data from the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing, will be completed in 2024. The highway will be 3462 km long, with 183 km left to be completed. Of the completed parts, 1647 km in Papua and 670 km of roads in West Papua are already paved with asphalt. The highway, which is a National Strategic Project and part of the National Medium Term Development Plan 2020-2024 aims to revitalize the economy and improve connectivity for Papuans, which will ease logistics distribution and mobility for the people. The construction has progressed despite facing various challenges including the area’s natural conditions, materials and security.

Another important development target is increasing access to electricity, which has seen much progress in recent years. This can be seen from the increased electrification ratio which grew significantly from 30,48% in 2013 to 77% in 2018. The number rose to 94,55% in 2021, closing in on the target of 100% for 2022. To reach it, the State Electricity Company (PLN) has relied on solar power, especially for villages far from existing networks.

Other major ongoing projects include the Yetekun Border Post, Yetekun Access Road, the rehabilitation of 235 educational infrastructure units, Papua Youth Creative Hub, Merauke Diocese building, and the Asmat Bridge. President Joko Widodo has shown that he is serious about developing Papua, including by making 15 visits to the region in his two terms in office.

In addition to physical infrastructure, the Government is committed to enhancing Papua’s human resources through scholarships such as the Middle Education Affirmation (ADEM), High Education Affirmation (ADIK), and the Educational Fund Management Institution (LPDP) programs. These provide the opportunity to Papua’s young generation to enhance their capabilities and skill, which must start from an early age.

A total of 10 Indonesian students from Papua graduated from Corban University, Salem in the state of Oregon, United States and graduated on Saturday (7/5/2022). (ANTARA/HO-KJRI San Francisco)

Quality human resources is important to prepare for the demographic bonus period which will impact the economy, politics, and improving the nation’s welfare. The collaboration and participation of the young generation must be maximized to speed up human resources development in Papua. This development needs to be accelerated to fill various employment sectors in line with the region’s potential. The central government’s efforts in this regard can hopefully stimulate the young generation in order to be more proactive so the programs can bring maximum returns. Quotas have also been set aside for Papuan youth to work as civil servants, police and army personnel, as well as employees of State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs).

In conclusion, it is clear that the government’s efforts in the development of Papua and its people have produced tangible results, which is set to continue. The efforts to achieve equal development everywhere through various concrete programs is testament to its commitment

Subsidised flights, mobile communications, and medical personnel: how Government programs bring tangible benefits to the people of Trikora, Papua

The pioneering subsidized flight in Jayawijaya last year. ANTARA/Marius Frisson Yewun

The Government has launched various programs in an effort to alleviate difficulties faced by communities, such as the citizens of the remote Trikora District in Jayawijaya Regency, Papua Province, who previously faced hardships even to purchase basic necessities due to their isolated location.

A major breakthrough to reach the region is through subsidised pioneer flights. Such a program would have limited impact in regions more easily accessible by land, air, or sea but invaluable to one as inaccessible as Trikora District, which lies deep in the interior of Papua. Its isolated location, far from the coast meant that many in the community have never seen boats, let alone know how goods can be distributed through the Government’s Sea Toll program. Many people in the district’s six villages have never even seen motor vehicles which are commonplace in cities such as Jayapura due to there being no roads due to the difficult geography.

Prior to the initiation of the subsidised flight program, members of the community faced serious challenges in acquiring basic necessities such as salt, sugar, and rice. To do so, they must trek to the capital Jayawijaya through narrow roads and dense forests, on a journey that takes between four nights to a week. After purchasing the goods and now being heavily burdened, their return trip is invariably longer and more arduous.

The six villages in Trikora are located behind a mountain and a valley, and also borders the Nduga Regency. To reach Keneyam, the Nduga Regency’s capital would require an equally grueling journey as the one to Jayawijaya.  The community, which does not yet have electricity, has only one airfield located in Anggolok village. Airfields constructed in three other villages have yet to be completed and are currently unusable. One airfield being constructed in Nanggo is 200 metres long, and will be very useful for distributing basic necessities to the community once it is operational, doing away with the need to undertake long journeys on foot.

These subsidised flights also make it easier for the Government to distribute aid to the local communities, although they cannot be transported directly to each individual village, and must be distributed at the airfield in Anggolok.

“We convey our gratitude to the Government for sending us aid using the flights. We are grateful that we can receive (basic necessities) because the journey from Trikora to Nduga takes four nights, so it is difficult to get industrial goods,” said Anggoma Kalolik, an intellectual figure in Trikora.

The community hopes that gradually, the Government can complete the airfields in other villages, to allow subsidised flights to land there. This will allow the distribution of aid and basic necessities to reach every village, with transportation costs that are lower than that of hiring a helicopter, which can total IDR 40 to 50 million.

They also hope that the flights, which are currently scheduled twice a week, can increase in frequency to once a day, so that gradually their welfare can be enhanced, like in the other 39 districts in the regency.

Communications

The people of Trikora are now able to use mobile phones to communicate with relatives living in other regions due to the government’s completion of a telecommunications network in most regencies in Papua.

Although they are still unable to access sites such as Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram like the citizens of the city centres, the people of Trikora are glad that they are now able to communicate with their faraway relatives.

The phones will also allow better communications with the Government. For example, when it comes time to deliver aid, the Government can inform the community by phone in advance so that the district or village heads can gather their citizens to pick up the aid to immediately take home. For Government programs such as elections, the organisers can inform the community ahead of time so that they can gather at the specified date to vote for their local leaders, and even the President during national elections.

Another much appreciated program is the aid for kiosks for the villages in Trikora. According to Nikolas Itlay, the head of the Jayawijaya Social Services, the aid for the Remote Traditional Communities (KAT) has been disbursed this year, which is only possible with small planes or helicopters. The aid, which comes from the Special Autonomy funds will be sustained in the years to come so that the community living in one of the highest points in Indonesia (Trikora Peak) can feel that the Government is there with them.

Health services

One year after the COVID-19 pandemic drained the local government’s funds, health services for the local community have halted, an unfortunate situation that the local government has continuously tried to remedy. To revitalise health services, the government plans to send doctors and nurses to the district in 2023. The medical personnel will provide services for more than three months in Trikora, and will then be replaced by other medical personnel once they have completed their duties.

Before the pandemic, the local government was able to allocate funds to charter helicopters and small planes to transport medical personnel and medicines. The personnel do not live in the health centres, as none have been constructed in the area.

“Next year we focus only on Trikora, so all the money we have proposed will be used to fund medical personnel in Trikora,” said Dr. Willy Mambiew, Head of the Jayawijaya Health Service.

The difficult terrain of Papua province has not discouraged the country’s leaders from helping the community to develop. The tangible effects are being felt by the people of Trikora, as the Government shows care for their citizens, no matter how difficult they are to reach.

Adapted from: Marius Frisson Yewun, “Upaya konkret pemerintah yang kian dirasakan warga Trikora Papua”, Antara, https://www.antaranews.com/berita/3234825/upaya-konkret-pemerintah-yang-kian-dirasakan-warga-trikora-papua

Southwest Papua becomes Indonesia’s 38th Province, Home Minister: This is historic

Minister of Home Affairs Tito Karnavian during a speech after the Southwest Papua Bill was passed into law by the DPR, Thursday (17/11/2022).


As the Bill for the Establishment of Southwest Papua Province was passed into Law by the House of Representatives (DPR), Home Minister Tito Karnavian expressed his happiness. He further stated that the new province will bring happiness to the people of Sorong Raya region in Papua.

“Today is a historical milestone for the people, especially the people of Sorong Raya and its surrounding areas. Of course, Indonesia is happy to welcome Southwest Papua as the 38th Province of Indonesia,” the Home Minister said at the DPR plenary meeting on Thursday (17/11/2022). The country previously inaugurated the 3 new provinces of South Papua, Papua Highlands, and Central Papua six days before.

The Minister hoped that people are not be carried away in the joyful atmosphere of the new province of Southwest Papua, rather that the new province means there will be more work for everyone involved.

“There is still much to do going forward which will require everyone’s collaboration, whether it’s the Government, region, and of course the House and the Regional Representative Council (DPD), all the stakeholders,” he said.

The Minister stated that the collaboration is needed so that Southwest Papua Province is not just agreed in a de jure manner, but also operational in a de facto way.

In addition, the Minister expressed that the discussions on the Bill involved the participation of various parties, including the people of Papua. “The creation of the Bill on the Southwest Papua Province was initiated by the House of Representatives which was then approved for discussion by the Government, received the aspirations of various elements of West Papuan society, from the regional heads, West Papua Regional House of Representatives, traditional and religious leaders, women, and bureaucrats present in Southwest Papua which were received by DPR, DPD, or Government, “he explained.

Furthermore, he explained that the main foundation of the Bill on the establishment of Southwest Papua Province is that the regional expansion of Papua must guarantee and provide opportunities to the indigenous Papuans to access politics, government, economy, socio-culture, and others.

Previously, DPR officially passed the Bill on the Establishment of Southwest Papua into Law. This was conducted at the House’s 10th plenary meeting of the 2nd Session of the 2022-2023 Year of Assembly, on Thursday. “We will inquire of every faction whether the Bill on the Establishment of Southwest Papua Province can be approved and passed into Law, does everyone approve?” asked Speaker of the House Puan Maharani, chairing the Thursday’s meeting. All the meeting’s participants voiced their support as the Speaker brought down the gavel, signifying approval of the law.

Three New Provinces in Papua Inaugurated by Home Minister

Minister of Home Affairs Muhammad Tito Karnavian inaugurated the three new provinces of South Papua, Papua Highlands, and Central Papua on Friday (11/11), joining the two established provinces of Papua and West Papua, and increasing the number of provinces on the island to five.

The inauguration ceremony took place at the Home Ministry in Central Jakarta, and was marked by the beats of Tifa drums beaten by Karnavian and his deputy, John Wempi Wetipo, along with two government officials.

“This Friday, November 11, 2022, on behalf of the Indonesian president, I, as the home minister, inaugurate South Papua Province based on Law No.14 of 2022, Central Papua Province based on Law No.15 of 2022, and Papua Highlands Province based on Law No.16 of 2022,” Karnavian remarked.

Following the ‘ (DPR’s) enactment of the three laws on June 30, 2022, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) validated those three new autonomous provinces on July 25, 2022. Based on the laws, the President must appoint acting governors within six months after the enactment of the laws, who will be in office until regional elections are held to elect the definitive pairs of governor and deputy governor.

The three acting governors are Apolo Safanpo (South Papua), Nikolaus Kondomo (Papua Highlands), and Ribka Haluk (Central Papua). Apolo is the Rector of Cendarawasih University, Nikolaus is the Head of the Papua High Court, and Ribka is Head of the Papuan Social, Population, and Civil Registry Office.

The acting governors will immediately commence their administrative duties after the inauguration. They are also mandated by the laws to facilitate the formation of the Papuan People’s Assembly (MRP) and Papua People’s Representatives’ Council (DPRP), and organizing regional elections for electing the definitive pairs of governor and deputy governor as well as to manage their respective provinces’ budgets.

The Minister stated that the three new provinces in Papua will further positively impact the lives of people as shown by the earlier experience of regional division to create West Papua Province. The province has rapidly developed in terms of bureaucracy, issuance of permits, public services, and the handling of other administrative matters, he added.

West Papua Set to Intensify Mangrove Conservation

West Papua has one of the largest areas of mangrove forest in Indonesia, making up 482,029 hectares of the overall area of mangrove forests in Indonesia which total 3.49 million hectares. The area of mangroves is the largest in the world, exceeding Brazil (1.3 million ha), Nigeria (1.1 million ha) and Australia (0.97 ha).

Mangrove forests act as lungs of the world, with the most essential functions for human survival, namely as a producer of oxygen (O2) and absorbing carbon dioxide (CO2) gas as well as preventing abrasion. They are also habitats for various marine species as well as a source of food for them. Several types of mangroves that grow in Indonesia are Avicennia, Bruguiera, Ceriops, Rhizopora and Sonneratia.

In addition to the aforementioned roles, mangroves have a variety of uses. In Papua, communities often use timber from the mangroves for construction of homes and other structures. It also has industrial uses, to be processed as chips that are exported to European countries as fuel for heating. The communites in the Southern coasts of West Papua also utilize mangrove forest ecosystems to supply their everyday needs for fish and shellfish.

Mangrove forests in Papua, like others all over the country are facing various threats. Indonesia is the world’s fourth-most populous country, and as its population has grown, pressure on mangroves has increased. According to experts estimates, 19,000 hectares of mangrove forests have disappeared all over the country, to make room for aquaculture and even oil palm plantations. Illegal logging and over-exploitation, as well as various forms of pollution have also worsened the situation. As of 2015, an estimated 40% of the country’s mangroves had been degraded or lost.

The West Papua Government is currently preparing a Special Regional Regulation for the protection of mangrove forests in the region. The regulation will hopefully help transform West Papua into a conservation province that cultivates and develops mangrove forest areas more sustainably. One of the main points of the regulation is the establishment of research centre to innovate the cultivation and utilization of mangroves and other essential ecosystems, as well as protection of mangrove forests from uncontrolled logging. This step is line with the overall strategy of the Indonesian government. Indonesia is currently drafting a new mangrove policy, focused on balancing mangrove protection, sustainable use and restoration.

The plan will complement other steps that have been taken over the years to conserve mangroves in West Papua. One of the major steps involve the planting of new mangroves by the Ministry of Forestry and Environment, the army, as well as local communities.

Mangrove conservation has been intensified all over the country due to the recognition of its very important role in coastal environments and the aforementioned threats. The steps include spatial plans, a system for resolving land use conflicts and balancing environmental and economic considerations by delineating zones for specific uses. In addition, the government will expand Marine Protected Areas to over 23 million hectares. The government has also included labour-intensive mangroves restoration as part of the country’s National Recovery Program. The Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment (CMMAI) is mandated to coordinate the related ministries and agencies, including Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Ministry of Environment and Forestry, and the Mangrove and Peatland Restoration Agency to support mangroves rehabilitation across provinces in Indonesia.

The government has set the ambitious goal of restoring almost all of what’s been lost, rehabilitating 600,000 hectares of mangroves by 2024. 

Indonesia has placed a special focus of mangrove rehabilitation and conservation to mitigate climate change as it holds the Presidency of the G20 this year. It has recognized that mangroves can contribute 60 percent of net-zero emission targets, as stipulated by the Paris Agreement.

Soldiers of RI-PNG Border Security Task Force receive awards for rescue of civilians and voluntary submission of improvised weapons

The Commander of the 172/PWY Territorial Military Command General J.O Sembiring represented by the Head of the Operations Section Colonel Yuswanto has presented awards to the RI-PNG Border Security Task Force soldiers of the 172/PWY Operations Command.

The award was presented symbolically at the 126/KC Infantry Battalion Task Force Post at Banda Village, Waris District, Keerom Regency, Papua, witnessed by the Village Head and community leaders of Banda Village on Tuesday (11/10/2022).

Awards were given to the 711/RKS Infantry Battalion of Wambes Post for the successful rescue of two Papuan children who were swept away by the Wambes Village River and the 126/KC Infantry Battalion of Waris Post who received voluntary submission of five improvised weapons from the Sanggaria Village community.

The Head of the Operations Section took the opportunity to convey that the award is a form of appreciation from the 172/PWY Operations Commander for the hard work of the soldiers in accomplishing their tasks as well as possible.

“We are proud of you all, even though you are at the end of your duty in Papua, you still work with high dedication to your country and nation, especially in helping in the hardship of the community in the region where you serve, and for that you deserve this award,” he said.

At the conclusion of this duty, he continued, soldiers must continue to contribute positively to the local community. “Nobody does things that may injure the Army’s dignity, especially wounding the hearts of the Papuan community. Leave a positive impression so that they will be reluctant to see you go. That is an indicator that your assignment in Papua was a success,” he said.

The Head of the Banda Village, Joni Mai (60), stated that the 126/KC Infantry Battalion Task Force has so far conducted their duties very well.

“To us the community of the Banda Village, we view that the 126/KC Task Force have done their best for the people, cooperation and communication with the community has been well-maintained, and even on behalf of the community, I apologize that we are unable to give anything as a token of appreciation to the members of the 126/KC Task Force members especially the Waris Post. We can only pray that they are able to return to their unit safe and whole,” he added.

“I hope that the new Task Force will be able to work with the community, because the Army and Police are the bastions of the country so the relationship and communications with the community may continue,” Joni Mai said.

In addition to presenting the awards, the Head of Operations also conducted a check and inspection of the RI-PNG Border Security Task Force 172/PWY.

In the meantime, the Operations Commander of the 172/PWY Territorial Military Command Brigadier General J.O Sembiring at a separate opportunity hoped that through this award the spirit and motivation of the soldiers in performing their duties can be enhanced.

“As I have conveyed before we will give awards for every achievement of the troops, no matter how small must be appreciated so that the other soldiers will be pumped up and motivated to continue doing their best especially the concern in helping the community.

Adapted from:

https://papuainside.com/korem-172-pwy-apresiasi-kinerja-satgas-tni-yonif-711-rks-dan-yonif-126-kc/

Sota, Zero-Kilometre Point of the East

The Sota Integrated PLBN is the eighth National Border Post (PLBN) built by the government on the Indonesian border and the second PLBN built in Papua after the Skouw PLBN in Jayapura.

Sota district, located in the easternmost part of Indonesia, directly borders Papua New Guinea and is located roughly 80 kilometres from Merauke. Known as the zero-kilometre point of eastern Indonesia, it is known as one of two places in bordering Papua New Guinea in Indonesia, the other being Skouw in Jayapura. Indonesia, of course, has another zero-kilometre point in the town of Sabang in Sumatra at the opposite end of the country, the country’s westernmost point.

To reach this area from Merauke, one must travel almost an hour if by car. The trip takes us through a mostly straight, tree-lined road. The journey will take one through parts of the Wasur National Park, one of the most well-known attractions near Merauke and natural habitat of numerous endemic species. Every so often, a tall reddish-brown earthen structure will be visible. These are the famous Musamus, referred to as giant anthills, but are actually termite mounds, which are found all over Papua. Nearing the destination, houses and other buildings will be seen, where a small community has made their home. To the left, we see the zero-kilometre structure, with its large zero and an imposing statue of Sukarno, Indonesia’s first president standing nearby.

Approaching the landmark, one cannot help be reminded of the old song “Dari Sabang sampai Merauke” (From Sabang to Merauke), familiar to virtually everyone in Indonesia. The song, composed by R. Suharjo invokes a sense of pride among Indonesians, instilled at a young age that Indonesia is a vast country stretching from Sabang in the West to Merauke in the East, with all the wealth and diversity in between. We move in to take a few snapshots at the backdrop to show people at home.

According to historians, the interaction between the people of RI and PNG has gone on for many years, and is based on cultural ties, including similarities in culture, language, through marriage, as well as economic, which form the network of people living in the border area.

As we approach the border post, we see a group of people walking towards the area, carrying plastic bags. They go through checks where the personnel inspect the goods they bring. They appear to be Papua New Guinean regulars known to the personnel, greeting them by name. Nowadays, people cross the border mostly for trade. Papua New Guineaans come to buy basic necessities, especially food items such as rice and cooking oil, which they say are cheaper on the Indonesian side. Others come to bring animals from hunting and fishing to sell, such as fish and venison. The border personnel tell us that between 300 and 400 people cross the border every month.

Closing in to the metal gate separating the border, a visibly stark contrast between the two sides becomes evident. Outside the gate of the compound, we are greeted by mostly empty land, dotted with trees, and a couple of the large termite mounds. We see some of the locals gather, watching some sightseers take photos near the gate. On the left side is a stone marker stating the date of November 1983, when the exact location of the border was determined, as well as the exact coordinates. Close to the gate, we spot a small herd of deer at the grassy area.

The sky began to darken, signalling that it is almost sunset. Going back to our car, we see a group of tourists taking selfies at the zero-kilometre monument. We give the border post one last look before heading back to Merauke.

A visit to Sota is a rare opportunity, and is not something many people will ever experience. Once it’s over, it is only natural that one will want to visit its sister monument in Sabang. A visit to Merauke feels incomplete without a trip to Sota, if only to boast of having been to both ends of the country.   

West Papua Team Wins Gold Medal in World Science Engineering Environment Competition (WSEEC)

The Head of the West Papua Provincial Education Office presenting an award to the West Papua WSEEC Team at the Manokwari Rendani Airport (24/7). (ANTARA/Rachmat Julaini)

Five high school students from Manokwari Regency claimed the gold medal in the Science Category of the World Science Environment and Engineering Competition (WSEEC) in addition to the Macedonian Special Award at Universitas Indonesia (University of Indonesia), Jakarta.

The team consisted of Sarah Glory Athalya Simanjuntak and Kezia Busthan from SMA Negeri 1 Manokwari, Goura Victoria Pattiselano and Justinus Marcos Serang from SMAS Katolik Villanova Manokwari, and Petrus Gyantfranco Christian Saiba from SMA Negeri 2 Manokwari.

For Goura and Justinus, this achievement proves to the world that Papuan children are as capable as children from other regions.

“We have to show that Papua can do it. Come on Papuan children, we must study hard, and don’t be lazy,” said Goura. Justinus added that it is through education that one can see the world.

Barapen Tradition

At the WSEEC competition in Jakarta, the West Papuan team presented a scientific paper on the traditional cooking method of the Dani tribe of the Jayawijaya district, Papua, known as “barapen” popularly known as “burning stones”.

Through their research and presentation, the West Papua team demonstrated that the traditional Papuan cooking method can be more effective and efficient by reducing the duration of the hours-long cooking process.

“The duration of the stone burning is usually several hours, starting from heating the stone, putting the meat and vegetables into the opening so that the food can be cooked and then consumed. Our presentation showed that it only takes 20 minutes to cook meat and vegetables, and 30 minutes to heat the stones. So, it only takes 50 minutes in total,” explained Justinus.

WSEEC

The WSEEC competition took place on 17-20 July 2022 in hybrid format at Universitas Indonesia. The West Papua team competed against 350 teams from 22 countries. It took three months for the West Papua team to prepare for the competition.

In the judging session, each participant was allotted three hours to present the results of their research and scientific work to a multinational jury.

WSEEC is known as an International-level Invention competition held by the Indonesian Young Scientists Association (IYSA) and Sekolah Ilmu Lingkungan Universitas Indonesia (University of Indonesia’s School of Environmental Sciences). This event is the suitable learning platform to foster research and scientific work using STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) among the young generation.

Adopted from:
Antara News, Papua Kini.

Cheating prawns from Papua: why cheating is good

Yes, cheating is good, even finger licking good! No, we are not talking about the famous fried chicken, but yes, you are right, it’s about food. Papuans call it Udang Selingkuh or Cheating Prawns. When people first hear about cheating prawns, they generally wonder why the prawns were given such a name? Were they having affairs? With whom? You’ll be happy to know that they are innocent. Udang selingkuh is a unique Papuan delicacy. The freshwater prawns are larger and the size of their claws is almost equivalent to crabs’ claws, resulting in an assumption that a certain prawn had an affair with with a certain crab; and udang selingkuh are their offsprings.

Credits: Cendana News

Jokes aside, udang selingkuh is a type of lobster (Cherax Albertisii), found in the mountainous region of Wamena, Papua. They are widely spread in rivers in the Baliem Valley. Papuans also find them in Lake Paniai, LakeTage, and Lake Tigi. Udang selingkuh is served in various ways, but due to its tastiness, it is not rare that udang selingkuh is cooked only with little salt to none.

The taste of cheating prawns is slightly different from the taste of prawns in general. The texture is more fibrous and tender with a slightly sweet taste, like the taste of lobster meat. Similar to prawns in general, all parts of the body are edible except the head, but we will get a bonus of meat on the large claws.

Udang selingkuh is not only delicious but also nutritious. It is high in calcium and protein. In addition, it contains minerals in the form of selenium, phosphorus, magnesium, sodium, and zinc. Cheating prawns are also low in calory (106 calories every 100 grams of meat).

Tourists mostly request the dish served in sweet and sour sauce, accompanied by stir-fried vegetables, such as water spinach or papaya flowers. The popularity of cheating prawns resulted in the emergence of a number of restaurants championing the dish, especially in Wamena. Mas Budi Restaurant, Baliem Pilamo Restaurant, Pilamo Cafe, and Blambangan Restaurant are among them.

To be able to enjoy it, you have to depend on the season because udang selingkuh is not specifically cultivated until now. The restaurants mostly rely on the catch of local residents who hunt traditionally on the Baliem River. They charge approximately USD30-8 per plastic bag. The price can indeed soar if the supply of shrimp is limited. Due to the high demand and low supply, tourists must pay about USD20-50 per portion or even more.

To those intrigued to taste udang selingkuh, the price does not matter. They will visit Papua to experience the dish that so far could only be enjoyed freshly there. If you are interested, make sure you avoid rainy season because the prawns will disappear from the market. So, best of luck!

Adapted from National Geographic Indonesia and Tagar.id

Paniai coffee from Papua continues to go global

Credit: Pixabay

The Papua Provincial Government will introduce Paniai coffee as a champion product at G20 events in Nusa Dua, Bali this coming June.

In addition to Paniai coffee, several other Papuan products will be exhibited and sold during G20 related events from June until the commencement of the G20 Summit in November.

Paniai is a regency located in the central mountainous area in Papua and has more than 200,000 residents.

Paniai coffee farmers use seeds from the Blue Mountains of Jamaica to produce a mild taste with a subtle acidity, floral aroma, and almost no bitterness in every sip of Paniai coffee. Grown on altitudes of 1,300-2,000 meters above sea level, Paniai coffee has a unique flavour and aroma.

In 2019, Paniai Regent Meki Nawipa launched a program to plant one million coffee trees and financial assistance for coffee farmers there. Up to now, more than 300,000 trees have been planted. To boost the production, Paniai Regency also plans to build its own factory.

Previously, Director of the Community Welfare Development Foundation, Hanok Herison Pigai assessed that native Papuan coffee commodities, including Paniai coffee, had quite promising marketing prospects. Market opportunities are increasingly open because drinking coffee has become a lifestyle for urban communities. “I want people’s coffee cultivation to continue to develop in Papua. Because marketing [at the] local and national level continues to increase due to an increase in the number of cafes,” said Pigai.

Adapted from Tempo and iNews Papua.

Nelson Sarira, A Survivor of the KKB Massacre that Killed 8 PTT Employees

Nelson Sarira holds up a sign that reads “pick up, only me alive”
Credit: Satgas Damai Cartenz

The attack of the armed criminal group (KKB) on Wednesday (2/3/2022) in Beoga District, Puncak Regency, Papua which killed 8 telecommunication workers still leaves deep sorrow for the people of Indonesia. 

Eight people including employees of PT Palapa Timur Telematika (PTT), contractors, and local residents who accompanied the repair of Telkomsel’s tower base transceiver station (BTS) 3 were killed by KKB.

This incident was discovered when one of the workers who survived, Nelson Sarira, sent a danger code through closed-circuit television (CCTV) located in the tower.

KKB Attack
Nelson said the attack occurred at around 04.00 WIT where he and his team were resting. A total of 10 people then entered the camp carrying sharp weapons, and massacred the team group by slitting one by one.

Nelson managed to jump out of the camp because of his position at the end and immediately ran to hide on the hill. At around 07.00 WITA when the situation seemed safer, Nelson returned to the camp and saw that eight of his colleagues had died.

In a critical situation, Nelson then sent the danger code via CCTV in BTS Tower 3 at 13.00 WIT, and the code was monitored in the afternoon at 16.00 WIT at the PTT Head Office in Jakarta.

Nelson was successfully evacuated by helicopter on Saturday (5/3/2022) due to unfavourable weather conditions. Combined personnel consisting of five Penerbad personnel and one member of the Gakkum Ops Damai Cartenz Task Force evacuated by involving two helicopters, namely the Komala Indonesia AS 350 B3E/PK-KIE helicopter and the Penerbad Bell 412EP/HA-5177 (Aircover) helicopter.

Nelson, who served as the Department of FOP East Palapa Telematics, is currently still being treated at the Timika Hospital, Mimika Regency.

Internet Service Providers Association (APJII) Condemns The Attack

APJII called the attacks on PT PTT employees, contractors and local residents extremely brutal. The chairman of APJII, Muhammad Arif, emphasized the huge losses incurred as a result of this ruthless attack.

“APJII condemns the rioters who sacrificed civilians and disrupted telecommunication infrastructure,” said APJII chairman Muhammad Arif in a written statement received, Friday (4/3/2022) evening WIB.

Arif assessed that the attack could also have a broad impact on Papuan communication network services. Because they attacked and killed employees who were repairing telecommunications infrastructure in Kago Village, Ilaga District, Puncak Regency.

For APJII, they are telecommunications workers who are frontline fighters with a noble task of connecting information to the public in Eastern Indonesia.

Adapted from: TV One, dan Liputan 6.

Soon Papua Will Have An International Standard University

Indonesia is a large country consisting of many islands. This caused some treatment differences that urban areas and 3T areas (“Tertinggal” Lagged, “Terdepan” Frontier and “Terluar” Outermost) had to experience.

Starting from internet access, transportation and even educational facilities for the young generation. However, there is good news from the easternmost island of Indonesia. Papua Province in the near future will soon have an international standard campus. On top of that the campus which will be called International University of Papua, is said to be a competitor to Harvard University in the United States.

This is after the central government officially received the Decree (Surat Keputusan) of the Minister of Education, Culture, Research and Technology (Mendikbud Ristek) number 24/E/O/2022 regarding the permit for the establishment and inauguration of the International University of Papua (UIP) on Monday (14/2/2022).

Leading Faculty in UIP

This step was taken as the government’s support in the education sector by advancing human resources in Papua.

Quoting from the Instagram account of the Directorate General of Higher Education, Research and Technology (Ditjen Diktiristek), Wednesday (16/2/2022), UIP has two leading faculties, namely: 1. Science and Technology 2. Teacher Training and Education.

UIP is also equipped with an International Research Center to support student learning.

Bring in teachers from Papua and abroad

The campus will bring in teachers from Papua and abroad Indonesia with background knowledge that is in accordance with the needs of UIP as an acceleration of progress in the Land of Papua.

The construction of the International University of Papua (UIP) campus is part of the efforts to accelerate development of Human Resources in Papua. This step is also part of the President’s focus in the realization of Presidential Instruction No. 09.2020 concerning the Acceleration of Welfare Development in Papua.

The Presidential Staff Office (KSP) appreciates the establishment of this International University which was marked by the Decree of the Permit to Establish the International University of Papua by the Head of the Higher Education Service Institution (LLDIKTI) Region XIV (14) Papua and West Papua, Suriel S Mofu, the Organizing Committee for the International University of Papua, Samuel Tabuni in Jayapura.

Producing qualified human resources in Papua

In addition, KSP appreciates the issuance of the decree and sees that UIP can contribute in producing an international quality of human resources (HR) in Papua.

Moreover, the Papua region has strategic potential in developing international education cooperation considering it is close to other countries such as Papua New Guinea, Australia and New Zealand which have good diplomatic relations with Pacific countries.

In the future, it is hoped that UIP can facilitate the need of improving the quality of education in Eastern part of Indonesia through affirmations and accelerating the development of Papua’s welfare.

Deputy II of the Presidential Chief of Staff, Abetnego Tarigan, said that UIP is expected to be a beam of light from the east as a new foundation for the development in Eastern Indonesia.

“With the existence of UIP, it can increase competitiveness as well as to improve performance and upgrade potential workforce who are qualified in their fields,” said Abetnego.

Adapted from KOMPAS; Medcom.id