Actions, demos, protests...

Indonesia Roundup #28 - August 14-20, 2006

, by INDOLEFT News Service, PRD

Residents blockade road to ceramic industrial center

Dozens of residents from the villages of Cianting,
Anjun, Plered and Citeko in the Purwakarta regency
of West Java blockaded a road leading to a local
ceramic industrial center on August 13. The action
was taken to prevent trucks transporting stones from
entering or passing though the villages because they
said they are damaging the road and cause traffic
jams and dust pollution.

"There are around 300 trucks that operate 24 hours a
day, most have a load of more than 20 tons that is
vehicles of class III and IV", said H. Arifin, a
local public figure. He added that the roads are not
capable of supporting such loads and as result after
only a few months since it was repaired the road is
already damaged again.

Arifin said that the trucks should use the
Liunggunung-Cilalawi route but drivers are
disinclined to use it because it is also damaged,
far from the main routs and prone to accidents. He
said that nine out of the 15 companies operating the
truck had promised to build a new road but this has
yet to happen. He also added that the number of
trucks using the road is growing day by day. (Kompas
Cyber Media, 13/8/2006)

Klaten earthquake victims demand assistance

Around 1,000 earthquake victims from the Klaten
regency of Central Java demonstrated at the Regional
House of Representatives (DPRD) and the Klaten
regent’s office on August 14. They were demanding
that the government fulfill its promise to provide
living allowances, money for clothing and household
goods as well as funds for rehabilitation and
reconstruction.

Arriving in around 25 trucks, the protesters
gathered at the Klatan Trikoyo Stadium then marched
to the regents offices carrying hundreds of banners
expressing their disappointment with the government.
“[Vice President] Jusuf Kalla promised to provide 30
million rupiah for repairs to houses, but up until
now there has been no assistance. Don’t trick us
with false promises, the people are already
suffering”, said one of the protesters

After giving speeches, representatives of the
protesters were received by the Klaten regent in the
DPRD’s assembly hall where he promised them he would
do the utmost to help them but added that he did not
have authority over policy decisions. (Kompas Cyber
Media, 14/8/2006)

Lampung workers demonstrate again

Hundreds of workers from the company PT Keong
Nusantara Abadi demonstrated at the Lampung DPRD in
South Sumatra on August 14 demanding the payment of
outstanding wages. The demonstration was one in a
series of protests that workers have held since late
July after the company arbitrarily change their
employment status. (Kompas Cyber Media, 14/8/2006)

Adam Air flight operation officers on strike

Around 40 Adam Air flight operation officers have
been on strike since August 11 in protest over the
dismissal of four colleges. The four were dismissed
on August 10 and there have been rumors that others
would also be sacked. "All of a sudden, without any
clear reason, we were dismissed after working an
average of around three years. We protest these
arbitrary sackings", said one of the strikers.

Aside from protesting against the dismissals, the
workers are also demanding a wage increase. "To date
our wages have been very low, on average we receive
1.5 million rupiah a month. Whereas our homes are
located far away. Just for transportation it can
cost as much as 1.2 million. This does not yet
include food and other operational needs", he added.
(Detik.com, 14/8/2006)

Damri bus drivers in Surabaya protest again

Hundreds of Damri bus drivers and conductors
demonstrated again at the Surabaya City office of
public relations in East Java on August 14. Their
demands were the same as an earlier protest, that
the municipal government action taken against
minibuses working the Surabaya-Malang and Surabaya-
Mojokerto bus routes that they say are cutting into
their incomes. A similar protest was held last week
at the Surabaya DPRD. (Liputan 6, 15/8/2006)

Acehnese students in Java commemorate one year of
peace

Some 50 Acehnese students from the Association of
Acehnese High School, Youth and University Students
(IPPMA) studying in the East Java city of Malang
commemorated one year of peace in Aceh on August 15.

The students held a march though the city then
gathered at the Malang Town Square where they
distributed flowers, stickers and posters to
pedestrians with messages for continued support for
the peace process in Aceh.

Action coordinator Muhammad Hatta said that the
action was to commemorate one year since the signing
of the Helsinki Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
between the Indonesian government and the Free Aceh
Movement. “We hope that all parties involved in the
signing of the MoU will maintain their commitment to
what has been agreed to and provide a real sense of
security, peace and justice to the Acehnese people”,
he said.

In a press release the IPPMA criticised a number of
articles in the recently enacted Aceh Governance Law
that they said were not in accordance with the MoU.
“We hope that both parties will truly build a sense
of mutual trust in order that peace in Aceh will be
ongoing. It is hoped that the government will adhere
to what was agreed to in the MoU”, said IPPMA
general chairperson Fauzi FZ. (Aceh Kita, 15/8/2006)

High school students vandalise chairs and desks

Hundreds of students from the SMUN 9 public high
school Makassar gave rein to their anger by
vandalising chairs and desks. The students said that
the school principal, Jamaluddin, had acted in an
authoritarian manner by expelling students that
violated school regulations without giving them a
warning first and that he was not transparent in the
management of school finances. Their teachers also
supported the student’s action. (Liputan 6,
15/8/2006)

Selection of IPDN student applicants protested

Hundreds of protesters went to the South Sumatra
provincial government offices in Palembang on August
18 to demand transparency in the selection of
students applying to study the Domestic Education
Institute (IPDN). They were demanding the
cancellation of the IPDN selection process that they
said was thick with corruption, collusion and
nepotism. One of the indications of this was that
IPDN applicants with high grades were not selected
while those with a ranking of 7-9 passed. (Liputan
6, 16/8/2006)

Ambon refugees demand monthly allowance

Dozens of people displaced by the 1999 Ambon riots
demonstrated at the North Sumatra governor’s office
in city of Ternate on August 15. The protesters, the
majority of whom were women and children, were
questioning the local government’s failure to fulfil
a promise three years ago to provide them with
financial assistance. (Liputan 6, 16/8/2006)

Makassar students protest university policies

Hundreds of students from the Hasanuddin Makassar
University demonstrated in Makassar on August 15
against threats by university rector to expel 12
students from the agriculture and forestry faculty.
The 12 students threatened with expulsion have often
opposed campus policies, in particular issues of
financial transparency in the management of
educational forestry funds. (Liputan 6, 16/8/2006)

Students oppose appointment of chief public
prosecutor

A group of students demonstrated at the offices of
the chief public prosecutor in the Central Java
provincial capital of Semarang on August 15. They
were protesting the appointment of Nana Juwana as
the Central Java chief public prosecutor. The
students said that Juwana acted in an unprofessional
manner in handing down a verdict in a dispute over
the election of regional heads in the Jakarta
satellite city of Depok. (Liputan 6, 16/8/2006)

Makassar residents blockade road

Residents from Karunrung in the sub-district of
Rappocini in Makassar blockaded the road leading to
their residential area on August 16. The protesters
were angry with the mayor of Makassar, Ilham Arif
Siradjuddin, for failing carry out road repairs. As
a result of the action traffic flow in the direction
of the Gowa regency was severely disrupted. (Liputan
6, 16/8/2006)

Victims of hot mud disaster demand compensation

Hundreds of residents from the villages of Siring
and Jatirejo in Porong, Central Java, who are
victims of the hot mud outflow from the PT Lapindo
Brantas drill site demonstrated on August 16. They
were demanding that PT Lapindo buy them house to
replace those that have had to be abandoned after
being inundated with mud. They also rejected an
offer by PT Lapindo to pay rent on the inundated
houses.

Bring banners and poster the residents marched to
the Porong flyover where they closed off the road
and prevented vehicles from passing though Jl. Raya
Porong, the main highway connecting the cities of
Surabaya and Malang. Although the action caused a
one-kilometer traffic jam the protesters refused to
allow police to reopen the road. (Liputan 6,
16/8/2006)

Strike action by fuel transport drivers in Lombok

On August 16 some 88 fuel truck drivers went on
strike parking their trucks at the state-owned oil
company Pertamina depot in the city of Ampenan,
Lombok, in protest over the suspension of two fellow
drivers, Barnabas Lodan and M. Gazali.

“The suspensions were arbitrary”, said Transport
Service Trade Union (SBJT) secretary general Tauhid
Hidayat. "We are asking that our friends be
rehired", he said. The drivers refused to fill up
their tankers and as a result 28 fuel stations in
Lombok suffered fuel delivery delays. (Tempo
Interactive, 16/8/2006)

Earthquake victims oppose assistance projects

Hundreds of earthquake victims from the Central Java
regencies of Bantul and Gunungkidul in Yogyakarta
held a joint demonstration with non-government
organisation activists and students on August 18.
They were opposing the use of reconstruction
assistance funds for assistance projects and
administration. They said that the 20 billion rupiah
in reconstruction funds would be better used to
rebuild the houses of earthquake victims. They also
opposed borrowing additional money from overseas
saying the foreign debt burden had already brought
suffering to the people. (Liputan 6, 18/8/2006)

Flores students occupy state prosecutor’s office

At least 1,600 students from the Flores University
(Unflor) occupied the offices of the regional state
prosecutor in Ende, East Nusa Tenggara on August 18.
The students, who had marched from the campus
together with a number of lecturers and university
employees were demanding that the Attorney General
postpone the execution of three death row prisoners
from Poso — Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu and
Dominggus da Silva.

"We are urging the Attorney General to immediately
issue a decision postponing the execution of Tibo
and friends until the legal process is completed and
there is legal authority to process the 16 witnesses
or new suspect that were mentioned by Tibo, Marinus
and da Silva", said the secretary of the Unflor
Student Executive Council Claudia Febriani Bebok in
a statement. Next week the students plan to hold
another peaceful action at the offices of the state
prosecutor. (Kompas Cyber Media, 18/8/2006)

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