Courage is that voice inside of you that goes against your common sense… Common sense tells you: you’re gonna die if you do that, they’re gonna hurt your family if you do that, you’re never gonna get a job after you do this… Courage tells you: this is for my people, so no matter what happens, I need to do it.
Courage tells you: “Maybe you think what I am doing is stupid, but it is what I think I should do for my people before I die.” And Olga did it, because Olga had courage, real courage. As a Human Rights lawyer in West Papua, she used that courage to defend her people relentlessly: Buchtar Tabuni, Sebby Sambom, Victor Yeimo, Steven Itlay, Alexander Nekenem, Forkorus Yaboisembut, Edison Waromi, and all the others who were in prison, and all those women and men who had been treated unfairly or indecently. It didn’t matter which organization they were from, all that mattered was that their rights had been denied; all that mattered was that her people’s rights had been denied and trampled upon… And she was ready to defend them, together with her colleagues.
Courage does not see colour, it does not recognize creed, it does not see gender… courage just takes over. Courage is that voice inside you: it’s not because you see an act of courage that you will necessarily do the same. No… it’s because you, YOU, choose to listen to that voice. And yes, we all are courageous some of the time… but this one, Olga… She was courageous all of the time. When I met her in 2013, I heard her talk and she was talking the truth… she was not afraid, she was just telling it is as it is. That was in Geneva… and then she went back to West Papua and she went back to work, as usual: defending her people. Courage is leaving the lions’ den… and going back into that den, to fight for those you left behind.
- Yes, either you have it, or you don’t… and Olga had courage.
- Speak for those who cannot speak; Seek justice for all those on the verge of destruction.
- Speak up, judge righteously, And defend the rights of the afflicted and oppressed. (Proverbs 31:8-9)
She did as the Lord asked… and now the Lord took her back to Him. Rest in Peace, Olga.