JATAM - Mining Advocacy Network
Pers Release BaFFEL
In a plenary session at the Banyuwangi Regional House of Representatives at the end of June 2014, Banyuwangi Regent Abdullah Anas Anwar claimed if Banyuwangi regency shares in gold mining companies have increased. The number of shares initially worth a total of Rp 10 billion, according to the Regent who is also a former member of the Regional House of Representatives was increased to Rp 22.9 billion. This increase is due to Banyuwangi regency gets grant shares of PT Merdeka Serasi Jaya (MSJ) worth of Rp 12.9 billion.
It is worth to mention that, PT MSJ is the holder of 95% of PT Bumi SuksesIndo (BSI) which is the holder of Mining Business Permit (IUP) that will exploit gold in protected forest of the Tumpang Pitu mountain.

Claims about the increased shares which delivered by the regent of Banyuwangi in the plenary session of Banyuwangi Parliament, according to Public Relation of Banyuwangi's Forum For Environmental Learning (BaFFEL) Rosdi Bahtiar Martadi, become an evidence that both the Regent and Banyuwangi Parliament do not look holistically (as a whole) to the gold exploitation plan in protected forest of the Tumpang Pitu mountain.

"Tumpang Pitu and surrounding areas are disaster-prone areas and densely inhabited areas. Mining activity in disaster-prone areas and dense habitation is a very high risk activity. This proves that both the Regent and Banyuwangi Parliament only emphasizes the economic aspect, regardless of the ecological aspect, the safety of residents, disaster factors, and marginalizing aspects of sustainability, "said Rosdi.

These conditions, added Rosdi, compounded by the absence of disaster management session in the EIA document of PT BSI. “Mining in non disaster-prone and not densely inhabited areas had definitely changed the ecology, moreover mining in disaster-prone and dense areas? Obviously the risk is higher. And of course, the impact that would befall the community will be far greater than the profits or shares that would be obtained, "said Rosdi.

The absence of a disaster management session in the EIA document of PT BSI which missed from the Banyuwangi executive and parliamentary monitoring, according Rosdi, shows that the executive and Banyuwangi Parliament is not sensitive to the safety of residents.

Giant Mine gold mines in Canada, according to Rosdi, could be a reference about the incomparable value between the damage borne by the state and the benefits. After operating for 54 years (from 1948 to 2004), more losses were obtained by the Government of Canada.

"Since 1999, the Government of Canada has spent about Rp 1.44 trillion to take care for the former mining area. Now, they need at least Rp 8.55 trillion to freeze the arsenic trioxide waste, so as not to contaminate the wider region. This does not include other costs that should be borne by the Canada Government as much as USD 18 billion per year," said Rosdi
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