Bad Conditions in Keerom, West Papua
The Coalition for Justice, the Rule of Law, Human Rights and
Service (K2PH2P2) has expressed its concern about conditions in the
district of Keerom during the first months of this year.
It said that the governing body is
far from being capable, responsive
and accommodative. Government workers are largely incapable and
unresponsive and lacking in discipline in their work. In a press
release issued on 1 August in Abepura, a group of leaders including
church leaders, civil society leaders and human rights activists
expressed their fear that development in the district which was intended
for transmigrants is stagnant.
'Discipline in the civil
service is very bad. They live in Jayapura,
arrive in their offices at 9am and go home soon afterwards, which means
that the service they provide is very bad,' said Bonefasius A. Muenda of
the Keerom Social Institution. Most of them live in Jayapura and arrive
in their offices quite late in the morning. Even worse, some of the
civil servants only go to their offices twice or three times a week. For
the rest of the time, they stay at home.
But there are other problems as well, according to
the Coalition. In
education for example, Pastor John Jonga, a leader of the Catholic
Church in Keerom, said that hundreds of children receive no attention at
all because there are no teachers. He said this was more likely to be
thousands of children, not hundreds. Ironically, billions of rupiahs are
allocated to education but the children are waiting for their teachers.
'In Towe Hitam,
36 members of the armed forces are paid for by the
government but there are no teachers. This is a crime,' said Pastor
Jonga who is a recipient of the Yap Thien (Hien) award.
But that is not all. Medical facilities are
worryingly poor in this new
district that was set up just a few years ago. Another pastor, Eddy
Togotly was of the opinion that there is no serious intention on the
part of the government to develop Keerom. 'People dont come to Keerom
to help with develooment. On the contrary.'
Meanwhile, the chairman of commission A of the
assembly, Yosep Turot, said that some officials are so far from
adequate that they should be sacked from their jobs. He said that there
are a number of reasons for this, including the purchase and sale of
certificates among officials which has an impact on the performance of
In view of all
this, the Coalition is calling for the appointment of a
new local government chief who should be credible, intelligent,
creative and concerned about the conditions of the people.. And they say
that the new chief should pay full attention to the performance of his
staff so as to ensure that they work for the development of Keerom and
not for their personal interests.'