Bintang Papua, 15 July, 2011
ARE AUSTRALIAN MEDIA REPORTS THAT KINGMI CHURCH SUPPORTS PAPUA MERDEKA TRUE?
The KINGMI Church in the the Land of Papua has raised its concern about a report in an Australian newspaper on 7 July alleging that the KINGMI Church is using special autonomy (OTSUS) funds it receives from the provincial government to fund activities to prepare for Papuan
independence and secession from the Republic of Indonesia. The Synod of
the Church referred to Major-General Erfi Triassunu, the military
commander of the Cenderawasih Military Command XVII, as the source of
The KINGMI Church has asked the military commander to acknowledge
responsibility for the statement.
This was stated by the chairman of Commission A of the Papuan
Legislative Assembly, the DPRP, Ruben Magai, along with commission
member, Ignasius W. Mimin during a meeting with leaders of the KINGMI
When Bintang Papua sought confirmation from the military commander that he thought the KINGMI Church was separatist, he denied it, saying that he had never said this. All he wanted was that the conflict should not be used by a third party to disrupt peace in the Land of Papua.
The military commander said that he was frequently asked for assurances of security from churches that were being overwhelmed by internal conflicts, but he had asked the provincial governor to resolve these matters.
‘It is not the task of TNI (Indonesian army) institutions to resolve conflicts but we are prepared to help if requested to do so by the regional government,’ he said.
Ruben Magai said that by making such a statement, the military commander was brushing aside a number of serious problems in Papua such as corruption and recent shooting incidents which the Indonesian government had failed to resolve. He said he would be calling on the military commander to acknowledge responsibility for making a statement that stigmatises the KINGMI Church for allegedly using OTSUS funds to fund Papua’s independence as well as calling on the provincial government to give a clarification about OTSUS funds being used for religious guidance in the Land of Papua.
The chairman of the Synod of the KINGMI Church, Dr Beny Giay, said that
he had conveyed his concerns about the military commander having
disseminated a political document which apparently says that the KINGMI Church had been set up to use money received from the government to support Papuan independence. ‘The military commander’s document was leaked to us and when we checked the report, it was confirmed. We believe that what has been reported in the Australian media is indeed correct.’
Meanwhile, the legal advisor of the KINGMI Church Synod, Benny W.
Pakage, said he had called on the military commander to explain what the legal basis was for his statement. ‘We want to know what his intentions are,’ he said.To indicate their rejection of such a statement, they are planning to hold a demonstration and prayer meeting outside the DPRP office on Wednesday.
- Leaked Letter Reveals Indon Army Scare Tactics (westpapuamedia.info)
- Violence is being perpetrated to reinforce merdeka aspirations (westpapuamedia.info)
- Statement of deep concern by Coalition of Human Rights Defenders in Papua (westpapuamedia.info)