Antara, Papua – A Regional Representatives' Council (DPD) member, on behalf of West Papua's electoral area, made an earnest request to President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) to revoke the government's investment permit for the liquor industry in Papua.
"We appeal to Mr President to revoke the government's investment permit for the alcoholic beverages industry in Papua," Filep Wamafma noted in a press statement received by ANTARA here on Saturday.
Wamafma cautioned against a spike in crime rate following liquor intake in the country's easternmost province.
The DPD member pointed out that the government's investment permit for the liquor industry in the provinces of Papua, Bali, East Nusa Tenggara, and North Sulawesi is stipulated in Presidential Regulation No. 10 of 2021.
The presidential regulation on investment that President Joko Widodo had signed on Feb 2, 2021, is issued to follow up on the job creation law that the House of Representatives (DPR) had passed last year.
"Referring to the presidential regulation, the liquor industry may obtain investment from both foreign and domestic investors," Wamafma stated.
Investment in the liquor industry could also come from cooperative units and small and medium enterprises, he remarked.
ANTARA noted that alcohol consumption remains a grave problem in Papua, although the production, distribution, and sale of liquor have officially been prohibited in the province since 2016.
To respond to this challenging reality, the local police continue to crack down on liquor producers, distributors, and sellers there.
The Papuan government has also effectively prohibited the production, distribution, and sale of alcoholic beverages since 2016, in accordance with Regional Government's Regulation Number 15 of 2013.
The regulation is aimed at safeguarding Papuans from the detrimental impacts of alcohol consumption in the form of loss of consciousness and engaging in acts of domestic violence and crime.
Alcohol consumption has also led to deadly traffic accidents in the province. In 2019, the Papua police reported that death toll from traffic accidents in Papua had reached 72.
The 2019 fatality rate was higher than that of 2018 during which the figure stood at 58, and the Papua police claimed that alcohol consumption has become one of the causative factors apart bad driving habits of certain motorists and drivers.