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The 1969 Papuan People’s Opinion was Final and Ratified by the United Nations, by Ryando Winata

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Ryando Winata | Papuan Observer

Statement Papua is part of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia, not just words, but reality. Moreover, if judging from the historical value, it will be clear that Papua is one body with the motherland because the process of entering Papua has been ratified by the United Nations (UN).

A long history of popular opinion meetings (Pepera) have been held from July 24 to August 1969. Initially, the United Nations sent 50 staff to Papua, but later this number was reduced to half, which in the end was only set to 16 people, including administrative staff.

The United Nations agreed to limit the number of its officials so that only a small number of people supervised the Act. So the assumption that the United Nations as a world organization is under pressure from Indonesia is not true. The task of supervising the Act of Free Choice began on August 23, 1968.

The Act was implemented in 8 districts, namely Jayawijaya, Merauke, Paniai, Fakfak, Sorong, Biak, Manokwari and Jayapura. Which was attended by 1026 members of the Pepera Deliberative Council (DMP), representing the population of Papua, which at that time was 809,327 people.

The DMP consists of 400 people representing traditional elements (Kepala Tribal/Adat), 360 people representing regional elements and 266 people representing elements of political organizations and other social organizations. The results of the Pepera which were held in 8 regencies of West Irian (Papua) chose and determined that Papua is an absolute part of the Republic of Indonesia.

The results are then agreed upon and approved by affixing signatures for all those present at the meeting. De facto Papuan people choose to integrate with the territory of the Republic of Indonesia. The issuance of United Nations Resolution 2504 at the General Assembly on November 19, 1969 stated that if 82 countries agreed, there were 30 countries abstained and no one disagreed. This has shown that the international community has recognized the validity of the 1969 Act.

The UN seems to have taken into account the consequences in a fair democracy of the pros and cons of the results of this Act. Opinions against those who accept the decision are also those who oppose the decision. The lawsuit regarding the legitimacy of the Act of Free Choice by the OPM is considered only an attempt to scapegoat by seeking historical loopholes that are used for its interests.

The Act of 1969 has been implemented according to regional conditions and community development. Which is not possible to do “one man, one vote”. If this is seen as a deficiency or defect, in fact the United Nations has accepted the legitimacy of the Act of Free Choice through resolution No. 2504. In fact, the international community fully recognizes it and none of the parties reject it.

“Papua is one body with the motherland because the process of entering Papua has been ratified by the United Nations (UN)”

Thus, the determination of the UN resolution to recognize the results of the Act of Free Choice is considered a valid document because the Act of Free Choice has been implemented. Even though it is a representative system, the results of this Act is well received as a final decision.

In the same case as in East Timor, it was shown that even though there were objections about holding the ballot, in the end the UN remained in its position. Namely stating firmly that the people of East Timor have chosen to separate from the Republic of Indonesia. This choice was immediately recognized by the international community, despite objections made by various parties.

UN Resolution No. 2504 is a firm statement of the UN’s recognition of the sovereignty of the Republic of Indonesia over Papua. What needs to be underlined is that any attempt to secede from the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia is an act of defiance against applicable international law. Including the UN charter itself.

From this we can see that the results of this Act of Free Choice are final and valid, although many consider it a flaw in relation to the results. In fact, the United Nations stated that this attempt to secede from the territory of the Republic of Indonesia could be indicated as a form of opposition to the United Nations.

The results of the Pepera have ended, the decision is final and can be accounted for de facto de jure. The joining of Papua is also suspected to have existed before Indonesia’s independence was proclaimed. Which is reinforced by the existence of a map made by the Dutch East Indies government in 1931.

So that there is no longer any doubt that Papua is part of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia anymore, right? Moreover, the Papuan people themselves say that Indonesia is their homeland. Furthermore they also stated that they got independence in Indonesia so there is no reason to seek another independence.

 

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