The Expansion of Papua is a Form of the Government’s Seriousness in Building Community Welfare – The Indonesian House ratifies the New Autonomous Region Law (DOB) for Papua. The three laws that were passed are the South Papua Province Law, the Central Papua Province Law, and the Pegunungan Province Law. The law is considered to guarantee the social and economic rights of the Papuan people while at the same time aiming at equitable and justice development in Indonesia. This was revealed in the Webinar “Expansion of Papua Province for The Youth Generation,”.

Attanding at the seminar were the General Chair of DPN for the Papuan Indigenous Youth, Jan Christian Arebo, a leader of Papuan youth, Gazali H Renngiwuryang and the political observer and academic of UIN Jakarta Robi Sugara. The Chairperson of the Papuan Indigenous Youth DPN, Jan Christian Arebo, said that actually the expansion of the Papua Province was in line with the policy of accelerating development in Papua. This is a very extraordinary policy provided by the Indonesian government through President Jokowi, as a form of seriousness in building the welfare of the Papuan people.

“This expansion is necessary because the geographical condition is twice as large as the Java Island, so it requires a wider span of control so that public services to people who are never or rarely served can be realized. Besides, it can also reduce the budget, especially transportation and accommodation,” he said, Thursday (4/8/2022).

Most of the Papuan people live in the mountains, so the state apparatus requires a large amount of money in terms of transportation. The division of this province is the government’s way of expanding public services to the community so that the attention of the government can truly be evenly distributed. According to him, the three new provinces will absorb human resources, especially from indigenous Papuans, which will certainly benefit the younger generation who have abilities from various fields.

If there are parties who feel aggrieved by the existence of this expansion, they should convey it. Do not use irrelevant methods by provoking the community just because they reject this policy, and alleging that there will be large-scale transmigration to Papua, Papuan natives will be killed, there will be additional troops and so on.

 “Those are invalid issues that are voiced by the opponents of pemekaran. In fact, if there is no expansion, their power and corruption will continue to be enjoyed and do not want to be disturbed. We, the young generation, are very grateful to the central government, in this case, Mr. President Jokowi, who is very serious and pays attention to equitable development in Papua. We, the younger generation, must support, guard and secure this policy,” he said.

 Similarly, the Papuan youth leader Gazali H Renngiwur, who stated that the new autonomous region law was a milestone for the Papuan people. Papua is currently being led by a second generation that is going to end. We have entered the young generation getting ready to lead. With this DOB, it opens up many opportunities. This is a grace to the Papuan people.

Apart from facilitating the span of control of services, from a demographic point of view, these new autonomous regions break the deadlock because there is an explosion of job opportunities since there are quite a lot of young people today. So this is positive for the younger generation of Papua in the future. There will be job opportunities and spaces for the younger generation of Papua to enter.

“Many young people receive positive opportunity for this new autonomous region in the future. Many young people have been given space and opportunities to take part. There are about 3 new autonomous regions in Papua. When the new autonomous regions are opened, they certainly provide job opportunities and work spaces.”

It is clear that activists are quite active in dialogue with the second generation of Papuans. The chairman of GP Ansor Papua also reminded the younger generation in Papua and Indonesia that this opportunity should be used by the younger generation, or the third generation so that in the next 5-10 years Papua will be more advanced. This is very positive for the welfare of the Papuan people.

 “For the fourth generation, there will be more opportunities for education, employment and health services in the future and will be able to develop their native areas to remote areas.” he said. UIN Jakarta political observer and academic Robi Sugara stated that the Papua issue was quite unique. The problem in Indonesia, 40% of them are in Papua. The issue of Papua is important and sensitive, so the government is quite careful in responding.

 “This is actually a public question why Papua is prioritized for expansion after the moratorium because the Central Government has not been able to budget enough. This means, for the expansion in Papua, it certainly requires a large budget,” he said.

According to him, this shows the attention of the central government is quite high, especially in the midst of the Covid-19 surge and the impact of the Russia-Ukraine war. The existence of the division in Papua is proof that for the sake of Papua, President Jokowi as a parent is willing to want Papua to continue to experience dynamics and try to stabilize the problems that exist in Papua.

 “This is Jokowi’s pure desire for the welfare of Papua. So the term is, even if there is no funds, it will be made up for Papua,” explained the alumni of the NTU Singapore Campus. Read: Surabaya City Government Closely Monitors Factory IPAL to Prevent Environmental Pollution. According to him, this expansion is to accelerate development and service processes that the Papuan people must experience. In addition, what needs to be prioritized is to prepare human resources.

With the existence of this new autonomous region, of course, it requires quite a lot of experts, which of course cannot be met by indigenous Papuans themselves, so they need support from other Indonesians. “Young people must play a bigger role in meeting these needs. So far, the role of youth is rarely revealed when they are in a regional expansion, even though this is the most urgent one,” he concluded.

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