Ekari people

The Mee (also Bunani Mee, Ekari, Ekagi, Kapauku) are a people in the Wissel Lakes area of Central Papua, Indonesia.[2] They speak the Ekagi language.

Bunani Mee
Native Mee women wearing traditional clothing
Total population
Regions with significant populations
 Indonesia (Central Papua)
Ekagi language, Indonesian language
Christianity (95%), Islam (2%), other ethnic religions (3%)[1]

Epidemiological significanceEdit

In the 1970s, an investigation was conducted by Indonesian physicians concerned about the high rates of Ekari people hospitalized for burns. The study revealed many Ekari people were suffering from neurocysticercosis, caused by the pork tapeworm, Taenia solium, which had been previously unseen in Papua New Guinea. As a result, many had been suffering seizures while in close proximity to fires, injuring themselves in the process. Pigs infected with the tapeworms had been introduced to the island previously by the Indonesian unknowingly.[3]

Representations in mediaEdit

  • National Geographic aired the film Tribal Odyssey: The Chief Who Talks to God: The Mee, Papua in 2005 as part of its Tribal Odyssey series.[4]


  1. ^ "Ekagi in Indonesia".
  2. ^ Carmel Budiardjo & Soei Liong Liem (1988). West Papua: The Obliteration Of A People. TAPOL. ISBN 0-9506-7515-6.
  3. ^ "How the West (Papua) Was Won." Cultural Survival. N.p., Dec. 1987. Web. 12 Apr. 2017.
  4. ^ "Tribal Odyssey". Archived from the original on 2013-12-03. Retrieved 2012-03-01.

External linksEdit