[BACKGROUND COMMENT: News that preparations are being made for the creation of a new MRP has resulted in a number of comments from groups in Papua, most of which are very hostile to the idea, in view of the widespread dissatisfaction with Special Autonomy and calls for it to be ‘handed back’ The following is one of these comments, translated by TAPOL] 


Jayapura: A large number of  people who are members of the KRPBK took part in a demonstration in Jayapura on Monday 11 January  protesting against the recruitment of members of the Majelis Rakyat Papua (Papuan People’s Assembly).  They called for the MRP to be disbanded without delay because Special Autonomy (OTSUS) has been a total failure.

The demonstration began with a series of speeches outside the office of the MRP, under the guard of security forces from the police and Brimob. The demonstrators then proceeded to the office of the DPRP, the Papuan provincial legislative assembly, to present their demands.

Representatives from several components of civil society in Papua stated their views in a series of speeches. They said that  OTSUS which had bound Papua to Jakarta has been declared a failure by all the Papuan people at the time when they declared that they had handed back the OTSUS law  to the Indonesian government on 12 August and 17 July 2010. This means that there is no question of recruiting members of the MRP. The MRP which was set up as the the cultural voice of the Papuan people within the framework of OTSUS had proved incapable of representing the views of the Papuan people because it turned out to be nothing but a puppet. This means that there is no longer any need for the MRP to continue to exist in Papua.

They also urged the DPRP to implement the eleven recommendations [see below] adopted by the Grand Assembly of the Papuan People in June 2010. They pointed out that there had been no reaction to these eleven recommendations and nothing had changed.

The demonstrators called upon the Euroopean Union, the US and other countries which have made contributions to OTSUS to end their financial support . They also called upon these countries and the international community to push for acknowledgement of the status of Papua as a sovereign state and an independent people.

If these demands are not speedily  implemented, the KPRBK said that it will occupy the offices of the MRP and the DPRP together with a far greater number of  people. This action will take place simultaneously throughout the national territory of West Papua.

The KRPBK demonstration then met the chairman of the Commission A of the DPRP who is also the chairman of the MRP recruitment comittee, Drs Ruben Magai, who explained that the authority to disband the MRP rests with the MPR – the People’s Consultative Assembly of  the Republic of Indonesia – and the matter could not be handled by the DPRP, nor does the DPRP have the authority to respond to the eleven recommendations of the Papuan People.

Ruben Magai also said  that a special committee to evaluate OTSUS had been set up and the evaluation would happen very soon. As for the recruitment of members of the MRP, that is also in progress, together with the selection of the new governor and deputy governor, which is to be carried out by the MRP.

The KRPBK said that they were not satisfied with the response of the DPRP. They read out a statement of their opinion, while at the same time saying that they would refuse to make any written statement to the DPRP about their aspirations  until such time as their demands had been met.

NB: The eleven recommendations were adopted by the MRP and the Indigenous People of Papua in June 2010 and call among other things for OTSUS to be returned to Indonesia, for an internationally-mediated dialogue with the Papuan people, for the holding of a referendum for Papuan independence, for the demilitarisation of Papua, for an embargo on international assistance for the implementation of OTSUS and for the closure of Freeport.


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