Tribal leader SP Hanebora, known for resisting oil palm, dies in Nabire

SP HaneboraSimon Petrus Hanebora, leader of the Yerisiam ethnic group in Nabire who campaigned resolutely to oppose an oil palm company and force it to leave Sima and Wami villages, Yaur District, Nabire, passed away on Thursday 12/2/2015 at 3.05 am local time in the Nabire public hospital, where he had been treated for four days.

Robertino Hanebora, the Secretary of the Yerisiam ethnic group, told Jubi on Thursday that SP Hanebora had complained of a fever last Friday, and then on Saturday started vomiting and passed out. He was brought to a doctor who informed him he had malaria.

Robert related that as he kept vomiting and couldn’t eat, on Sunday he was brought to the public hospital for treatment. He was treated there for four days.

“On Monday and Tuesday, his condition improved and he could eat again. But then his condition deteriorated and he couldn’t speak properly. It wasn’t possible to take a blood test since the hospital’s laboratory equipment was broken.” he said.

Because of his poor condition, the family paid a different doctor to take a blood test. On Wednesday the results showed not only malaria, but also diabetes, hepatitis, and heart and belly disorders.

“On Wednesday his condition deteriorated and became critical. Then in the early hours of the 12th February 2015, at 3.05 am, he passed away” he said.

Robertino Hanebora said that the loss of SP Hanebora would not break the spirit of resistance to fight the oil palm companies operating in Sima and Wami villages which continue to destroy nature and and the Yerisiam people’s natural resources.

“Our younger generation is ready to continue our father’s struggle,” he affirmed.

SP Hanebora was the leader of the Yerisiam wider ethnic group. He had always fought against the oil palm companies operating in Sima and Wami villages, Yaur district, Nabire. His last meeting with the oil palm company was in late January 2015. The Nabire police chief had arranged for him and other members of the Yerisiam tribe to meet the leadership of PT Nabire Baru to discuss compensation for land taken over by PT Nabire Baru.

SP Hanebora had persistently fought to oppose this oil palm company. But fate had a different plan for him, and he had to leave us before this task was finished. Younger generations of Yerisiam people are asked to keep fighting, and continue the struggle of SP Hanebora.

Source: Tabloid Jubi

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