YOGYAKARTA - Professor of Governance Science and Chairman of UGM Department of Political and Governance Science, Prof. Dr. Purwo Santoso, said the conflict and conflict management in Papua become one of the main indicators that the policy of Special Autonomy in Papua has not worked as effectively as expected. Therefore, he proposed the Government and Parliament to redesign the acceleration of development policy in Papua by including the conflict and potential conflict issue in the design of development acceleration for Papua.
The establishment of Development Acceleration Unit of Papua and West Papua (UP4B) by the Government, according to Purwo, is just to cover the gap in a formal design procedure of development acceleration for Papua. Purwo Santoso assessed that it is difficult for UP4B to perform its function because the conflict has not been made major consideration for the design of Special Autonomy and development acceleration for Papua. "This indicates that the development design is insensitive to conflicts. It is as if the Government was eager to accelerate development in areas where the infrastructure for the acceleration is not available," he said.
State constitutional law observer, Mohammad Fajrul Falaakh, S,H, M.A, said that in legal perspective, the Special Autonomy in Papua is a legal framework of transitional justice that had been decided politically and bureaucratically at the national level, but which may not fully represent the local conditions.
He added that the pattern of relationship and management of local government as a special area is intended to improve the welfare of the community. However, the efforts made for development in Papua still leave many problems. "It seems the local bureaucracy has not dedicated abundant funds of Special Autonomy for improving people's welfare, it is proven that the leakage of this fund is quite large," he said.
According to Purwo, the development of Papua should be managed together as part of grass root development effort. "The development in Papua is no longer what Jakarta or high ranking local officials say but what the grass root level aspires," he said.
UGM anthropologist, Bambang Hudayana, assessed that Papua’s problem starts from everyone’s attitude who consider the territory of Papua as uncivilized, so it has to be civilized first by internalizing a variety of foreign cultures that are considered modern or better. As a result, the pluralistic culture of Papua that has 250 tribes with different traditions and languages is being harassed. Cultural diversity should no longer be seen as a weakness but strength. "To appreciate the cultural diversity begins by acknowledging local culture which becomes their identity and a tool to adapt," he said.
He proposed the need for village empowerment by conducting participatory village community development, realizing economic independence based on local wisdom and utilizing natural resources and the establishment of multicultural urban society.