Amidst global focus on relieving the burdens of PNG earthquake victims, Radio NZ- an NZ-government-funded media, keeps luring the public to buy their claim that Indonesia is a country full of discrimination especially in West Papua.
On April 10th, Radio NZ reported that a group of West Papuans wanted the money collected for a public donation to Papua New Guinea earthquake victims returned by Indonesian police. The media reported the issue as if a massive amount of money has been confiscated and Indonesian government hate West Papuans doing the donation collection.
The NZ-government-funded media said that “A Papuan group was taken in by Indonesian police on 7 April 2018 after holding a public collection for donations to a relief fund for earthquake victims in neighboring Papua New Guinea.” It says that 16 West Papuans have been arrested during the period of donation collection.
Imbalanced, evil accusation
The media reported that the detention of the West Papuans in Jayapura was caused by the local policy authority’s negligence. RNZ says implicitly that the West Papuan group had sent a written police notification but the Police carelessly lost track of the letter.
Valid info has been collected from our sources in Indonesia. The result is that RNZ’s accusations are deemed as fake and baseless.
It is true that the police detained a few of West Papuans who went on the donation collection. But they were released immediately and one was finally detained because the police found him intoxicated.
On April 7, 2018 the police in Abepura, Jayapura, was investigating one of the people who went on the street for collecting donations for the earthquake victims in PNG. The person was identified as Obet Wanduru Rumpaisum (20 yrs).
While on the street, the public saw the young man seemed to be under the influence of alcohol while asking for donations. The worried community then reports the group to the police.
The police then came to investigate, and found Obet was just consuming a local alcoholic drink named ‘Ballo’ in front of the Abepura Police post office.
Obet confessed that he bought alcoholic beverages as much as 5 liters and already had consumed approximately 4 liters. Then he saw a group of youths from West Papua Solidarity for Earthquake Disaster in Papua New Guinea who would go for fundraising for earthquake victims in PNG. Still in the influence of alcohol, he then took part in the group to take donations from the community.
The police came and these West Papuan youth were taken into Abepura police station. The members of the group as well as Obet were taken to the police station for further investigation. The police told them how dangerous it was if there is somebody intoxicated in public collecting money. Police explained that the funds they collected at that time amounted to 42,000 IDR or about 5 NZD. The police explained that all the money and the group members were released.
During the investigation process, 5 of the ‘real member’ of the group were released earlier and only Obet was detained and investigated. A few hours after getting sober, the police released Obet without any charges.
RNZ’s professionalism questioned
From that information, we can conclude that what the government of Indonesia was doing is just based on standard operating procedure. It has to be emphasized and noted by RNZ that Indonesia is a country that has a well-developed legal system. It has laws and regulations that well-apply across the country.
In this sense, the procedure toward public intoxication allegation aforementioned could have been performed as well in New Zealand if similar situations emerge.
We think that what RNZ has been accusing Indonesia is sort of mean or evil. They only see the problem partially from one perspective and deliberately ignore the other facts that may balance out their information.
We see that RNZ is deliberately discrediting Indonesian government and all Indonesian citizens in general. To this end, as a NZ government-funded organization, their professionalism is in a big question. (*)
pic credit: nirmeke.com