The Government Should Firmly Obligate to Develop Smallholders’ Palm Oil Plantations

Foto by Apriliagoverty/Sawitfest 2021
The Government Should Firmly Obligate to Develop Smallholders’ Palm Oil Plantations

InfoSAWIT, JAKARTA – Senior advisor of IHCS (Indonesian Human Rights Committee for Social Justice), Gunawan appreciated the Regent of Tanjung Jabung (Tanjab) Barat, Anwar Sadat who facilitated the meeting about smallholders’ issues from 9 (nine) villages with PT Dasa Anugerah Sejati (PT DAS), Monday (6/6/2022).

The meeting was attended by the Police Chief of Tanjab Barat, Army Chief 0419/Tanjab, head of Kuala Tungkal Attorney, heads of UPTD KPHP, National Land Agency of Tanjab Barat, PT. DAS, and the representatives of nine villages, such as, Merlung, Penyabungan, Lubuk Terap, Badang, Pematang Pauh, Pelabuhan Dagang, Taman Raja, Kampung Baru, and Lubuk Bernai.

That was the response to the smallholders’ demonstration that claimed, PT DAS should have the obligation to develop people’s plantation for about 20% from PT DAS plantation areas.

In the meeting, PT DAS could only facilitate the people’s plantation development within profit sharing system outside of the Business Rights. Regional government of Tanjab Barat would follow up the meeting by taking General Directorate of Plantation Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Agrarian Affairs and Spatial/National Land Agency (NLA), assess the plantation business, and re-measure the plantation width of PT DAS.

Knowing the outcome of the meeting, Gunawan mentioned, it is regulated in the Regulation of Plantation to develop people’s plantations. If a plantation institution breaks the regulation, the head of a region or NLA would firmly do something about business permit or business rights of a plantation company.

Gunawan thought, the point is the 20% areas from a plantation company’s areas. Profit sharing is only partnership or cooperation.

He also suggested, plantation assessment of PT DAS that Tanjab Barat would do, needs to know the impacts of PT DAS itself for the villages, and environment around the company’s areas.

“The cases like this should be the notes for the related ministries. Agrarian Reform Taskforce, President’s Staff Office, and even the president himself should prioritize the agrarian reform to reach the target,” he said, in the official statement to InfoSAWIT, Thursday (9/6/2022).

Chairman of IHCS in Jambi, Ahmad Azhari, as the smallholders’ developer from the nine villages, would keep monitoring the process after the meeting. They hoped the case would get immediate solution for they have been fighting for years. (T2)