Population problem in Papua is serious, says acting governor




The acting governor of Papua, Constan Karma, has called for serious attention to be paid to the population problem in Papua because of the rapidity with which it has been increasing. He said that the problem was causing a number of social problems.

'In the competition for jobs, the people with better qualifications always succeed. Indigenous Papuans are not yet able to compete with people who have come from elsewhere because they have better qualifications. The result is that more and more indigenous Papuans are unemployed and this is causing social tensions.'

The address by the acting governor was read out on his behalf by the administrative secretary, Elia Loupathy, at the commencement of a seminar at which a draft regulation on the control and supervision of population was to be drawn up.

The acting governor said that the adoption of the Special Autonomy Law
(OTSUS) was intended to advance the position of indigenous Papuans in various sectors so that they could become more independent and enjoy a better level of welfare. ' The province of Papua is part of the Unitary Republic of Indonesia - NKRI - and indigenous Papuans are citizens of this province. They are entitled to enjoy equal treatment in the implementation of development programmes of the central and local governments. to improve people's welfare,' he said.

'OTSUS which was enacted in 2001 stipulates in article 61, para (3) that there is need for a population policy that promotes the capabilities, and participation of indigenous Papuans in all sectors of the development programme.'

He went on to say that this means that a regulation on control and supervision of population growth is necessary which would need close collaboration between all the stakeholders.

'I call on all those who hold leading positions in the SKPD(?) as well as all those attending this seminar to draft such a regulation, and to share their thoughts in reaching a solution to the problems that are being confronted in the province of Papua because of the population problem, and to help create a more orderly, secure and peaceful situation in the province.'

[Translated with slight abridgements by TAPOL]