WEST PAPUA: Jubi journalists warned to 'coordinate reporting' with police
Friday, June 17, 2016
JAYAPURA (Tabloid Jubi/Pacific Media Watch): Jayapura Police Deputy Chief Police Commissioner Arnold Tata warned two Jubi journalists, Benny Mawel and Zely Ariane, to make early coordination with the police while covering a rally by the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) Sentani Region on Wednesday.
Both took photographs and video for reportage and followed the protesters who were arrested and taken to Jayapura Police Station.
Riding a motorcycle, both journalists intended to cover the arrests at the police station, but an officer stopped them in front of the station.
An officer from the Sabara Unit warned the two that their journalistic activity was considered intrusive.
Mawel explained that as a journalist, based on the Press Law, they have the right to do their job without restrictions.
But the police did not want to listen any further.
Deputy Police Chief Tata said the KNPB rally was "illegal" so reporting was not required.
To calm the tension, Tata asked both to enter the police station to talk with Jayapura police spokesperson, Inspector Imam Rubianto, who then asked permission to photocopy their ID and press cards.
He said during the time the police considered Jubi was "less coordinated" with the police in Sentani area, less participatory in such activities carried out by Jayapura police.
“In many activities held by Jayapura police, other media came to participate, while Jubi has never been there,” he said while pointing to photographs of their activities hanging on the wall of his office lobby.
He also asked Jubi to be "more cooperative" with the police related to the reporting agenda. He did not question about the reporting done by both journalists on Wednesday, but he wanted Jubi to "coordinate" with Jayapura Police Public Relations.
Jubi editor-in-chief Dominggus Mampioper said there was no obligation for reporters to do do early coordination with the police in doing coverage.
“Journalists are assigned to cover the fact of an ongoing event, and the KNPB rally was a real happening. It doesn’t matter if it was legal or not, we should keep reporting it,” said Mampioper
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