Indonesia's non-government organizations (NGOs) urged President Joko Widodo and Parliament to cancel mineral and coal bill draft - Photo: Privacy.

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Indonesia’s non-government organizations (NGOs) urged President Joko Widodo and Parliament to cancel mineral and coal bill draft. The organizations assess the draft rule very hastily and just accommodate certain parties interests such as elites and capital owners.

Aryanto Nugroho, a spokesman from Publish What You Pay (PWYP) Aryanto Nugroho said mineral and coal bill has potentially problematic because it does not consider various stakeholders. According to him, draft law should be transparent, open and involve broad community participation.

“We suspect, mineral and coal bill to accommodate the extension number of companies holding Coal Mining Concession Work Agreements that have been and will end in near future,” he said in Jakarta on Thursday (07/25).

Meanwhile, the Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia (WALHI) observed the bill including Government Problems Inventory List changing substantially Article 169 of applicable Law. The bill set Coal Mining Work Contract or Work Agreement reached an automatic extension of twice for ten years. This automatic extension is in the form of a Special Mining Business License, Coal Mining Concession Work Contract and Work Contract.

In addition, it also gave the right to re-enter the area that has a Special Mining Business License with an area in accordance with the work plan of the entire mining area in an adjustment, it said.

According to the organizations investigation, parliament set 12 major points in Government’s Inherent Issue Bill as Inter-sectoral problem solving, Strengthening mining areas concept, Increasing coal use as a national energy source, Strengthening policies to increase mineral value-added, Encouraging exploration activities to increasing mineral deposits discovery, special arrangements regarding permits for rock exploitation and accommodating the decisions of Constitutional Court and Law Number 23 year 2014.

In addition, availability of mineral and coal mining plans, Strengthening central government role in fostering and supervising regional governments, Providing incentives to those who build smelters and mine mouth steam power plants, Strengthening the Role of State-Owned Enterprises, Changing Contracts of Work or Concession Work Agreements Coal Mining is a Special Mining Business License in the context of continuing operations.

Meanwhile, NGOs considers that the bill and Inventory List of Government Issues is very problematic because it does not reflect the sovereignty of the state as Article 33 of the 1945 Constitution. In addition, it contradicts the spirit of developing renewable clean energy.

Moreover, the bill actually provides many incentives for coal exploitation, does not pay attention to aspects of ecological interests and environmental protection, does not provide protection for the rights and safety of citizens and other socio-economic aspects.

“This Problem Inventory List of the bill actually provides an opportunity for a close-up of unlimited natural resources, and has the potential to be used to criminalize people accused of obstructing mining activities,” said the spokesman.

Melky Nahar, Jaringan Advokasi Tambang (JATAM) spokesman says the bill is not in favor of people’s safety. He says it has the potential to increase the expansion of new mining commodities starting from rare earth metals, radioactivity until Seabed Mining.

Nahar says more than 90 percent of the bill also discussed the process of licensing and mining. The people’s veto and indigenous peoples rights are denied space.

He added that the addition of article 115 A which strengthens article 162 of the old law to provide a room for the criminalization of citizens who convey their rights to reject mining.

“In article 99 paragraph 2 legitimizing mine pits to be used as irrigation and tourism, which will legalize the company continuing to leave destruction,” he ended.

Written by Willy Matrona, Email: theinsiderstories@gmail.com

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