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The Messenger

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We Are Just Living on a Daily Basis

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Aziz reports that Papua New Guinean immigration officials have been entering the detention centre to destroy tanks and wells. Meanwhile, the men remaining in the camp have tried to avoid provocation and confrontation. Daily protests have moved to a cooler time of day to account for their lack of water and shade. Aziz says things are quiet in the camp, and spirits are generally positive. Michael arrives on Manus Island.

'Food and water, electricity … this is not our main concern. Our main concern is we just want to get out of this island, and to a safe country.'

Abdul Aziz Muhamat

Photo of a damaged tank leaking water

A water tank damaged by immigration officials leaks water onto the ground. The centre has now been without a mains water supply for two weeks — Photo: Manus Alert

In this update

  • Abdul Aziz Muhamat

  • Michael Green

Our theme music was composed by Raya Slavin. Additional audio sourced from video footage recorded inside the centre.

More information

The Messenger is a co-production of Behind the Wire and the Wheeler Centre. It’s produced by Michael Green, André Dao, Hannah Reich and Bec Fary, with Jon Tjhia and Sophie Black at the Wheeler Centre.

This short update was edited and mixed by Jon Tjhia.

Thank you

Dana Affleck, Angelica Neville and Sienna Merope. Also to Behind the Wire’s many participants and volunteers. Behind the Wire is supported by the Bertha Foundation.


Portrait of Abdul Aziz Muhamat

Abdul Aziz Muhamat

Abdul Aziz Muhamat is a 24-year-old man from Darfur, Sudan. He is from the Zaghawa ethnicity, and with his family, he fled his village to a refugee camp. He arrived in Australia by boat in 2013 and was taken to Manus Island, where he remains.

Portrait of Michael Green

Michael Green

Michael Green is a journalist in Melbourne. He has written about environmental and social issues for the Age, Sydney Morning Herald, Nature, Nautilus, Smith Journal, Right Now and Overland, among others. He is the coordinator of Behind the Wire, and has been working on a book of people’s stories from detention called They Cannot Take the Sky, which will be published in March 2017 by Allen & Unwin. He is also producing an exhibition at Melbourne’s Immigration Museum based on the stories in the book, which will open on 17 March 2017.


All messages as part of this discussion and any opinions, advice, statements, or other information contained in any messages or transmitted by any third party are the responsibility of the author of that message and not the Wheeler Centre.

The Messenger

From Behind the Wire and the Wheeler Centre, The Messenger brings you into the Australian immigration detention centre on Manus Island – and reveals, in intimate detail, one man's experience of what it's really like to flee tragedy and seek asylum by boat.