REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA — The Ministry of Environment and Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia (KLHK) welcomed the representatives of Regional Representative Council of the Republic of Indonesia (DPD RI) and a group of customary landowners in Merauke and Bovel Digoel, Papua at Manggala Wanabhakti Building, Jakarta on Thursday (5/10). This meeting is a follow-up of a meeting held the previous day in DPD RI.

At the previous meeting, Oesman Sapta Odang, Chairman of DPD RI ordered Committee II to immediately hold a meeting with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry in order to respond the complaints from the indigenous people of Papua over the actions of foreign NGOs that are considered to have disturbed the livelihood of people in Papua. DPD also encouraged firm action against Mighty Earth, an NGO from the United States.

Upon welcoming the visit of the Merauke Regent, Frederikus Gebze and the representatives of the people of Papua, Pastor Charles Simare-Mare, DPD RI member from Papua, asked the public and the Indonesian government to be wary of the actions of foreign NGOs, which often carry out a black campaign, especially toward the national oil palm industry.

According to him, many foreign NGOs are misbehaving and have their own agenda. Therefore, he urged the government and the public to be wary of them. They shouldn’t be let to harm the nation and the local people. “We, as regional representatives must be at the front to face their negative campaign,” Charles stated.

He added that the local people are already happy by getting the central government’s trust in managing plasma plantation in Papua, however the foreign NGOs have been very disturbing, which resulted in the company having less opportunity to build plasma plantations for the community.

On the occasion, the people of Papua expressed their aspiration that they have established a cooperative as a requirement to open a plasma plantation, however till this date, it has not yet been implemented. The negative issue created by the foreign NGOs regarding deforestation is very disturbing for the investors there, and one of them is KORINDO. Meanwhile, the company has been operating for 23 years and has met the government’s regulations regarding the opening of oil palm plantations.

In the meantime, during the meeting with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, Parlindungan Purba, a member of DPD RI, asked the Ministry of Environment and Forestry to form a cross-ministry team such as the Ministry of Trade, the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to counter the negative campaign came from abroad. He also gave a strong warning to foreign NGOs to not disrupt the investment climate in Indonesia.

“There shouldn’t be foreign NGOs interfering with companies that have put investments there,” said Parlindungan Purba, who is also the Chairman of Committee II DPD RI at the press conference following the cross-state institutional meeting.

At the same location, Acting Director-General, Yuyu Rahayu added that the ministry is creating a strategy of how to gain perception, but the bottom line is, there is no longer a legal problem. “The point is we really understand this problem, because it concerns the livelihood of many people in Papua,” she said.

 

Source : Republika

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