|S.SOfyan Yoman ( Fhoto Ilustrs)|
A. Mysterious shooting incidents and Violence against the civilian population during May.
1. 15 May shooting in Degeuwo.
At 5.30 am, Selpius Kegepe, Lukas Tobeeta, Amos Kegepe and Yulianus Wagepa left the G 99 location for Location 45, for a game of billiards. Melkianus Kegepe followed suit.as they went on their journey to Location 45, Degeuwo.
At 6am they arrived at the billiards hall where they met a woman called Ibu Ona. They told her that they wanted to play a game of billiards and asked her for some balls. She said she couldn't give them the balls until they had paid. The men said that they would pay later, but she refused to give them any balls. The men then went to a cupboard where the balls were kept, took out some balls and began to play. Melianus Kegepe arrived later and stood by the door. At this point, Ibu Ona phoned the commander of the Brimob post at Kilo 99, not far from Kilo 45 location.. As they were playing billiards, Ibu Ona turned off the lights, so that they were playing billiards in the dark. The men asked her why she had turned off the lights, when they had said that they would be paying.. As they were arguing, some Brimob troops appeared.
The commander of the troops arrived and went straight to the billiards hall. One of them pulled out a pistol and shot Melianus Kegepe, chief of the Muda Clan.,in the side, with the bullet coming out on the other side. He died on the spot, as he was standing by the door of the billiard hall. The Brimob troops then started shooting the four youths in the hall, and hit Amos Kegepe. The first two shots seriously injured his left leg while the third shot hit him in the calf of his right leg. He was rushed to Nabire hopsital. Yulianus was shot in the back and the bullet is still in his body. Selpius Kegepe was hit in three places, in the right arm and then in the chest and then hit in the right waist. Lukas Tobeta was shot in the stomach and was rushed to hospital.
Melianus Kegepe, was 23 years old, Protestant, with two wives. He died instantaneously, standing by the door of the billiard hall.
Four men were seriously injured.
Selvius Kegepe, 22 years, Protestant, bachelor. Leg seriously injured. Hit in three places of his body, and is now in Nabire Hospital. Amos Kegepe, 22 years, Protestant, bachelor, shot twice, hit in the waist. Is now in hospital. Lukas Kegepe, 20 years, Protestant, bachelor, shot in the stomach. Yulianus Wagepa, 24 years, Protestant, bachelor, hit in the back, with the bullet stll n his body.
All the gold panning areas in Paniai and Nabire is located on land occupied by traditional tribes but exploitation of the gold is controlled by outsiders having paid a pittance for the land and in some cases, having paid nothing at all because the land is under the control of the security forces as a result of which the newcomers set up businesses and get involved in panning the gold, while being obliged to pay the security forces for their security.
As for Ibu Ona, she has opened the billiards hall under the protection of the security forces which can only be used by newcomers. She seems to have been involved in business for a long time in Degeuwo. The young people there know her well and call her kakak (older sister). The youngsters who come there to play became the victims of shooting by the security forces, who adopt an uncompromising attitude towards the local inhabitants, and dont even show any respect for the clan chief, the owner of the land where they must grow food for their upkeep.
These things happen in Degeuwo, killings and shootings of the local people, whose land is controlled by the newcomers.None of these cases in Degeuwo has ever been .solved. All that has happened is rotations of the personnel who are responsible for all the violence.
[Translated by TAPOL]