Congregation of Clans Towards the Strengthening of the Economic Livelihoods Territory of Customary Law Communities

Muting, 09-10 September 2015
Compiled today, Thursday 10th September 2015, at the Muting Church.
After listening to, discussing and analysing the issue of Customary Land Rights in the Subur Sub-District of the Boven Digoel District, and the Ulilin and Muting Sub-Districts of the Merauke District, in the Facilitator Workshop Meeting: Encounter of Clans towards the Strengthening of the Economic Livelihoods of Customary Law Communities in the Muting and Ulilin Sub-Districts, attended by representatives of the clans of Subur, Aiwait and Kaisa villages (Subur Sub-District) of Boven Digoel District,and the clans of Selauw, Boha, Pachas, Kolam and Muting villages (Muting Sub-District), and Selil and Kindiki villages (Ulilin Sub-District) of Merauke District and TuK INDONESIA, which was a follow-up meeting to the Customary Law Communities Deliberation held on 29th – 30th August 2015 in Boha village in Merauke District and in Subur village, with the participation of Aiwait and Kaisa villages in Boven Digoel District.
This meeting fully accommodated and struggled towards supporting the customary land rights of indigenous peoples of the Muting and Ulilin Sub-Districts of Merauke District, and the Subur Sub-District of Boven Digoel District, who are faced with real and concrete problems resulting from the development of policies by companies operating in Muting, Ulilin and Subur. We, indigenous peoples, affirm that there has occurred: deceit and neglect of customary land, territories and forests; destruction of the living space and lives of indigenous peoples themselves; unilateral agreements; the appropriation of customary land; non-transparent consultation, negotiation and MoU signing; intimidation; the manipulation of custom and customary rituals; ‘divide et impera’ and; the intensification of potential conflict between clans and between the ethnic groups of Mandobo of Subur Sub-District, and the Imoch clan and the Ezam clan of Muting Sub-District of Merauke District.
Thus, we, representatives of all the Indigenous Peoples of Muting and Ulilin Sub-Districts of Merauke District, and of Subur Sub-District of Boven Digoel District, have adopted the following joint stance, commitment and decision:

  1. We fully REJECT all types of companies that intend to enter and operate in the livelihood space of the indigenous peoples of Aiwait, Kaisa, Subur, Selil, Kindiki, Muting, Pachas, Boha, Kolam, Waan and Selauw villages.
  2. We urge companies operating in the Subur Sub-District where customary land and forest has already been destroyed by those companies WITHOUT the clear and transparent agreement and consent of those communities to revert those land rights to the Mandobo clan land owners of those customary lands.
  3. We DEMAND that companies publish the latest information regarding the status of their operational permits over our customary lands, notably the Location Permit (izin lokasi), the Plantation Business Permit (Izin Usaha Perkebunan) and the Business Use Permit (Hak Guna Usaha).
  4. We insist that all activities of companies operating on the customary lands of the Mandobo tribe of Subur village in Boven Digoel District be suspended IMMEDIATELY, including the financing of these companies by donors (banks) pending the resolution of potential conflict as well as environmental destruction in the customary territories of the Mandobo tribe of Boven Digoel District.
  5. We REJECT all forms of direct and indirect intimidation, terror and violence that violate the rights of all customary law communities to security and freedom in the territory of Muting and Ulilin Sub-Districts of Merauke District, and of Subur Sub-District of Boven Digoel District.
  6. We understand and perceive LAND as mother and source of livelihood as well as life itself in the culture of indigenous peoples in Boven Digoel District and Merauke District, including in terms of our family life, and clan and tribe traditions.
  7. We continue to hold on to our livelihood space, that is to say, our customary lands, customary forests and livelihood natural resources, with firmness, compactness and unity through CUSTOMARY DELIBERATIONS at the level of the family, clan and tribe, in order to reach If in the future, private or individual clan members act on behalf of Customary Land Rights Land Owners in the signing of agreements with companies, we affirm with RESOLUTION that all such agreements are INVALID.
  8. We URGE the legal recognition and validation of the customary territories, lands and forests of the Subur, Aiwait, Kaisa, Selil, Kindiki, Muting, Pachas, Kolam, Waan and Selauw villages, which are intrinsically and continuously linked to our kinship, myths, totems, and ancestral histories, both oral and written.
  9. We REQUEST full support from parties with good will in this cause, such as an advocacy team to struggle for and achieve the recognition of our customary territories and forests through the mapping of our customary lands and forests, in ways that are legitimate according to the tradition of our ancestors, and achieved through deliberation by the customary law communities of the villages of Subur, Aiwat, Kaisa, Selil, Kindiki, Muting, Pachas, Boha, Kolam, Waan and Selauw in the governmental Districts of Boven Digoel and Merauke.
  10. We NEED full support and solidarity for our food sovereignty – sago, coconut, rubber, timber and animals living on our customary territories and in the waters of our rivers, streams and marshes – such that they are given clear and precise legal recognition and validation within the Republic of Indonesia, and in ways that do not constrict the customary lands and territories of any of the clans in the Mandobo tribe, and the Malind Mbyan Anim Muting clans from the Imoch and Ezam cults.
  11. We emphasise NOT TO SELL CUSTOMARY LAND or surrender land through customary rituals of any form, including the burying/planting of pig heads by corporations.
  12. We emphasise our right to food sovereignty and a safe existence with great vitality: ‘CARE FOR OUR LAND AND US: CREATIVE ECONOMY MOVEMENT’, in unity with the indigenous peoples of Merauke District and Boven Digoel District.
  13. We EXHORT all indigenous peoples of Merauke District and Boven Digoel District to carry out Customary Delibierations at the clan level in each of their villages, in order to follow up our actions and commitment with regards to food sovereignty in line with the customary law of each ethnic group and tribe represented by these clans.

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