Indigenous People Demand Companies Give Work to Papuans

January 10, 2014

Source: Bintang Papua

Translation by AwasMifee

Four companies in Muting and Ulilin Districts of Merauke Regency have been asked to give work to indigenous Papuans, and especially holders of customary rights over the land the companies are using. The four companies that are operating in the two districts are PT Bio Inti Agrindo, PT Cahaya Bone Lestari, PT Agrinusa Cipta Persada and PT Berkat Cipta Abadi. All four companies are involved in the oil palm sector.

Imanuel Basik-Basik, the Traditional Chief of the Malind Bianim in Muting, said that these four companies had been in operation for two
years but were still not recruiting indigenous Papuans to their workforce, in particular the customary rights holders. This is despite a
written agreement between the companies and the customary land rights holders to recruit local Papuan labour, said Imanuel Basik-Basik.

“Documents exist in which all four companies promise to recruit local
Papuan labour once the company started operations, but until now there has been no follow-up on this”, said Imanuel Basik-Basik.

Based on data from the Merauke forestry and plantation service, these four oil palm companies are operating on customary land belonging to the Malind Bianim indigenous people of Muting, with respective operational areas of:

  • PT Bio Inti Agrindo 40,000 hectares,
  • PT Cahaya Bone Lestari 403 hectares (under a self-management scheme),
  • PT Agrinusa Cipta Persada, 33,540 hectares,
  • and PT Berkat Cipta Abadi 14,525 hectares.

Efendy Kanan, the head of the Forestry and Plantation service pointed
out that of the four companies operating in the two districts, one was
self-managed. “PT Cahaya Bone Lestari is a self-management corporation where the profits from the production are shared with 30% going to the customary rights holders and 70% to the company. This is because about 363 hectares of the land worked by the corporation belongs to local residents, while 60 hectares belongs to the local government,” revealed Efendy Kanaan.

2 thoughts on “Indigenous People Demand Companies Give Work to Papuans

  1. Be patient as you have been. Palm oil seems to be a quick fix for someones bank balance. The rightful custodians of West Papua have a history and place that is worth much more.

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