Jayapura, Jubi – In Jayapura City, Yahukimo students are making a plea to the Yahukimo Regency Government, urging them to pay attention to the welfare of residents who have sought refuge in Dekai. These people fled to Dekai to escape the escalating armed conflict in Yahukimo between the West Papua National Liberation Army (TPNPB) and the Indonesian Military (TNI) and Police.
According to Edius Bayage, a Yahukimo student, the situation of the displaced people in Dekai is deeply concerning. Bayage noted that these displaced people are facing significant challenges, including a lack of access to healthcare services and essential food supplies.
“The displaced people are spread across four different locations in Dekai. Some of them are unwell, yet they have not received adequate medical attention. We appeal to the Regent and the Health Office to provide comprehensive healthcare for the community,” Bayage said in a written statement received by Jubi on Wednesday, September 20, 2023.
The people who fled to Dekai originally hailed from Muara Bontoh, a residential area on the outskirts of Dekai District. These individuals had previously fled from nine different districts since 2019 due to conflicts among residents that occurred that year.
On September 1, 2023, the Yahukimo Regency Government provided aid in the form of 3 tons of rice and IDR 10 million to assist the displaced people from Muara Bontoh.
Bayage underscored that the residents of Muara Bontoh had to abandon their homes and are struggling to meet their basic needs in the refugee camp. He stressed that the government’s attention is crucial to addressing the needs of the displaced population, including healthcare, food, clean water, and clothing.
Beni Pahabol, chairman of the Yahukimo Boys Dormitory, called upon the Yahukimo Regency Government to take swift action in providing assistance to the displaced people. He highlighted a tragic incident where a one-year-old child in the refugee camp passed away on September 13, 2023.
Pahabol emphasized the students’ request for the Yahukimo Regency Government to ensure a decent quality of life and access to healthcare services for the residents currently seeking refuge in Dekai.
Yahukimo students also issued a plea for the cessation of troop deployments to Yahukimo, urging authorities to refrain from sending additional TNI/Police forces to the region. (*)