Jambi farmers demand redistribution of land from PT Kaswari Unggul to Minister of ATR/BPN

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Dozens farmer of East Tanjung Jabung Regency, Jambi, protested outside the Ministry of Agrarian Affairs and Land Use Planning/National Land Agency (ATR/BPN) building on Tuesday, December 13, 2022.

The farmers urged the government to immediately redistribute the Land Objects of Agrarian Reform (TORA) that were confiscated by PT. Kaswari superior to farmers covering an area of ​​3,470 hectares. This company would not have any cultivation rights certificate (Hak Guna Usaha).HGU), but proceeded to grab land from farmers.

“In this case, we are farmers, we came all the way here to meet the minister. We demand justice that the company as a corporation has not had an HGU for over 21 years but is still in business,” said Ahya Ahadita as Head of SPI Branch (Indonesian Farmers Union) Tanjung Jabung Timur, in front of the Ministry of Agrarian Affairs/BPN, Tuesday, December 13, 2022.

SPI East Tanjung Jabung Branch requires three things, including:

1. Revoke the plantation permit of PT Kaswari Unggul

2. Immediately redistribute land from the Object of Agrarian Reform (TORA) in conflict with PT Kaswari Unggul to farmers

3. Strict action against PT. Kaswari Unggul who manages land without having an HGU certificate

Through this demonstration, the peasants took part in the theatrical action of the “bloody palms” by depositing palm oil coated in red in front of the fence of the ATR/BPN ministry. There are two farmers out of dozens who douse their bodies with palm oil.

“We demand justice, action against this company, so that what the farmers are asking for will be redistributed as promised by the President of the Republic of Indonesia in the presidential decree,” Ahya said.

As for one of the administrators of the SPI of the East branch of Tanjung Jabung, Rajali, said that it was a very sad situation for this country. “We’re asking the minister to show that this country is capable of taking strong action against companies that are bad, companies that dare to operate for decades without having HGUs,” he said.

Previously, from 1996 to 2022, there had been dozens of clashes in the fields between farmers and PT. Superior Kaswari. In particular over the past two years, SPI has exposed the intimidation and criminalization of farmers, such as closing bridges accessing farmers’ roads to farmland, uprooting or destroying farmers’ crops, demolishing farmers’ farms and various calls from law enforcement officials.


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Zera Carpenter

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