East Kalimantan Governor is awarded as Nonchalant Governor by his people.

(Samarinda, 3rd November 2021) – Activists and students from East Kalimantan, hailed from JATAM Kaltim, WALHI Kaltim, FH Pokja 30 Kaltim, FNKSDA, and Papuan Students rise up as a response to another mining pit victim neglected by the Government of East Kalimantan.

JATAM Kaltim noted that in East Kalimantan, the danger of coal mining pits is still imminent because there are 1.735 mining pits in the province. In Samarinda alone, 349 mining pits are left open, without any attempts of reclamation and restoration, which would be a serious threat if they are left unattended by the Government. 

Febi Abdi Witanto (25) fell into a coal mine pit owned by CV. Arjuna on 31st October 2021 and became the 40th victim of mining pit accidents in East Kalimantan. Despite the severity of the accidents, the victims remain merely a statistical number for the Government, a number that will continue to increase, without any condolences and further actions.

The Governor of East Kalimantan, Isran Noor, neglected this issue without any attempts of reclamation and legal actions to irresponsible companies. This action shows the nonchalance character of Isran Noor, who is responsible for issuing mining permits. 

Therefore, the Civilian Coalition awarded Isran Noor as a “Nonchalant Governor”, a sign of his character. 

As an appreciation for his nonchalance in the past 3 years, during which 40 victims have fallen and most of them are children, the Coalition handed over the award in front of the Governor Office, said Pradarma Rupang, Coordinator of JATAM (Mining Advocacy Network) East Kalimantan.

Wahana Lingkungan Hidup (WALHI) Kaltim said that mining pit accidents will be repeated if there are no strategic approaches taken by the Government. “Repetitive problem from the extractive economy model that ignores the environment and the safety of communities should have been changed to Nusantara economy, a clean, sustainable, and safe counterpart,” said Yohana Tiko, Director of WALHI Kaltim.

According to Herdiansyah Hamzah, academician from Faculty of Law, Mulawarman University, after the end of mining operation, the permit holder has the obligation to carry out reclamation and post-mining operations. Herdiansyah Hamzah emphasized that “neglecting these obligations is a crime and punishable” including the provincial government, especially the Governor that remains silent and ignorant of this issue.

He said that in Article 161B Subsection (1) of Act 3/2020 Regarding Amendment to Act 4/2009 on Mineral and Coal Mining, it is explicitly said that, “Permit holder whose IUP or IUPK is revoked or expired and do not carry out reclamation and/or post-mining operation; and/or allocate reclamation reserve fund and/or post-mining reserve fund, is punished with maximum 5 year imprisonment and criminal fines of 100 billion rupiah“.

Further in Article 165 of Act a quo, the offender can be given “additional penalty” in form of goods and profit seizure, and obligation to pay the fee resulting from the crime. The time limit is also regulated, which opens to a question why CV Arjuna, that has been closed for years, has its mining pits remain open and left without reclamation and restoration, added Buyung Marajo and Fathul from POKJA 30 and LBH Kaltim.

From 2014 to 2020, JATAM National Secretariat has recorded 168 victims from mining pit accidents in Indonesia and this danger could reoccur from other 3.092 acidic mining pits that are left open and situated close to densely populated areas.

The Masses and the Civilian Coalition urged the Mining Moratorium in Indonesia, to revoke the permit and to enforce legal actions and penalties to CV Arjuna and other mining companies violating the reclamation. The negligence by the Governor of East Kalimantan and the Mayor of Samarinda must also be highlighted.

Children fell victims to Mining Pits in Indonesia is an example of how bad environmental and coal mining management in Indonesia, Joko Widodo and Isran Noor is even accused of protecting coal mining companies, even though the Government has just spoke about its commitment to the environment and the climate in Climate Change Conference COP 26 in Glasgow. This is because Jokowi has put Indonesia and East Kalimantan, a nation and a province that conserves this deadly energy source, as the main emission source and the cause of children’ deaths in mining pits.


Contact Person:

Pradarma Rupang 085250509899 (JATAM East Kalimantan)
Yohana Tiko 081350929213 (WALHI East Kalimantan)
Buyung Marajo 08125317699 (FH Pokja 30 East Kalimantan)
Herdiansyah Hamzah +62 852-4288-0100 (SAKSI Law Faculty of Mulawarman University)