Freeport workers mark May Day by observing moment of silence

Source – May 1, 2013
Freeport workers commemorate May Day in Timika (hariansib)
Freeport workers commemorate May Day in Timika (hariansib)

Timika – Thousands of workers employed in the PT Freeport Indonesia mining concession area in Mimika regency, West Papua, commemorated May Day by observing a moment of silence and reading out the Workers Oath at their respective workplaces.

The deputy chairperson of the Mimika branch of the All Indonesia Workers Union Chemical, Entergy and Mining Trade Union (SP-KEP SPSI) in Timika, Yopi Awom, said Wednesday that workers at Timika will not be holding a special commemoration of International Labour Day (May Day) considering the security situation in West Papua.

“Today we will not be conducting any activities at all because of the current situation and conditions in Papua, which are less than favourable”, said Awom.

According to Awom, workers at Timika are still worried that if they commemorate Labour Day there could well be other parties that would disrupt the activities for other aims.

“We are endeavoring to prevent Labour Day commemorations being subverted by outside parties that could direct them towards negative issues”, explained Awom.

Mimika regency has one of the largest concentrations of workers and in Papua province with the giant PT Freeport Indonesia gold and copper mine being located in Mimika.

It is estimated that more than 22 thousand workers work in and around PT Freeport Indonesia. Around 13 thousand of them are permanent workers while the remainder who work for the company are contract or private Freeport workers. (ant/mal)

[Peringati Mayday, Ribuan Buruh Freeport Mengheningkan Cipta – Rabu, 1 Mei 2013. Translated by James Balowski.]