Indonesian Diaspora in USA Ready to Spend Rp4.7 Billion/Year to Build Papua


JAKARTA, – The Ministry of National Development Planning/Bappenas has collaborated with Indonesian academics living in the United States to build Papua. They are members of the Indonesian American Society of Academics (IASA).

IASA said it’s ready to disburse US$350 thousand or Rp4.7 billion of fund per year, collected independently from the Indonesian diaspora.

The collaboration was marked by the signing of Cooperation Agreement between the ministry and IASA at the Bappenas Office, Central Jakarta, on Wednesday (2/7).

The focus of the cooperation includes the development of boarding schools and telemedicine services in Papua and West Papua.

“The cooperation covers 2 activities, namely boarding schools and telemedicine,” said National Development Planning Minister/Head of Bappenas Bambang Brojonegoro.

For the first stage, the development programs will be done in the regencies of Jayapura, Merauke and Nabire.

“We understand that every Indonesian citizen is entitled to educational access in accordance with the compulsory education program. In Papua there are challenges regarding the geographical conditions that cause some areas difficult to reach and the population sparsely spreads which is harder to gather in one place,” Bambang explained.

These conditions, according to him, make it difficult for children to go to school because they have to travel a long distance.

“First, regarding the boarding schools; the students have to walk a long distance to school every day. It’s not only wasted time but also energy, eventually the output is not optimal,” he added.

So, Bambang said he believed the most suitable schools for them are the boarding ones.

“Second, regarding the telemedicine; the concern is the same, meaning that the people of Papua are spreading. So, it is difficult to determine where and how many community health centers and hospitals to be built to make it effective and efficient,” he said.

Telemedicine is considered one of the breakthroughs needed to solve the problem.

“Telemedicine even can be done on the surgery with the surgeons in Jakarta, Surabaya, and Makassar, for example. With telemedicine, the local doctors do what directed remotely by the doctors in the other location and the doctors outside Papua can monitor it to make sure every step is right,” he added. (DTK/TPP)