Jakarta – Papua Legal Aid Foundation (LBH) Director Emmanuel Gobay says that West Papua National Committee (KNPB) international spokesperson Victor Yeimo is in a critical condition. The suspect in the 2019 riots in Jayapura is suffering from multi-drug resistance tuberculosis (TBC MDR), allegedly as a result of not receiving prompt treatment.
"So Victor's condition, he does indeed have serious lung disease which is quite acute. Because the severity of his lung disease is of type MDR. While he was detained he didn't receive treatment, so his condition become critical", Gobay told CNN Indonesia on Tuesday September 21.
Gobay explained that Yeimo was rushed to hospital in August for a health examination. The specialist doctor who examined him said that Yeimo was suffering TBC MDR which requires intensive treatment.
He explained that Yeimo must undergo intensive treatment for a period of six months and must take eight types of medication and receive injections twice daily during this period.
"And if it's interrupted he has to start all over again. If for one day he doesn't take [the medication], if for example he has undergone treatment for two months, yes, it has to start all over again. So his lungs are in a very critical condition", he said.
Gobay said that Yeimo has been temporarily released from detection so that he could receive intensive hospital care since August 30. Yeimo is currently undergoing treatment at the Jayapura Doc II pubic hospital.
Gobay hopes however that Yeimo can be placed under home arrest so that he can undergo intensive treatment at home. He is concerned that if Yeimo undergoes treatment in detention it will have a bad impact on his health.
"We hope that he can be put under house arrest so that the treatment can go smoothly and the legal process can be smooth. That's our hope. If he's in detention we would be constrained. It could be that one day he collapses and can't take his medication. And that would be very bad", said Gobay.
Yeimo has been detained since May on charges of being allegedly involved in riots in Jayapura in 2019 and alleged makar (treason, subversion, rebellion) in Papua. Before being arrested he was on the police's wanted persons list.
The 38-year-old man is an active KNPB member and international spokesperson for the organisation. He also holds the position of principle secretary with the Papua People's Petition (PRP).
Yeimo is alleged to have insulted the national flag, language, state symbols and the national anthem and or incited others to commit violence.
CNN Indonesia has attempted to contact the Papua regional police for confirmation on the matter but the police referred the issue to the chief public prosecutor.
CNN Indonesia then attempted to contact the chief public prosecutor but as of publishing this article has not received a response.
Last month the Papua regional police revealed that Yeimo had received a medical examination at the Mobile Brigade (Brimob) command headquarters detention centre's policlinic. (rzr/pmg)
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Aktivis KNPB Victor Yeimo Kritis, Diduga Tak Dirawat di Sel".]