(Wednesday, 15/6/22) On Thursday, 2 June 2022, the lawsuit of environmental permit of PT Tambang Mas Sangihe (TMS) sued by 56 women from Bowone Village, South Central Sub District of Sangihe Island Regency won at State Administrative Court of Manado (PTUN Manado). The Manado State Administrative Court decision has cancelled the environment permit of PT TMS registered as No: 503/DPMPTSPD/182/IX/2020 dated 25 September 2020. Moreover, Manado State Administrative Court had also granted a request of postponement of all activities held by PT TMS until the decision has permanent legal force or there are other stipulations issued that may cancel it in upcoming days.

By the decision, which cancelled the environmental permit of PT TMS, all kinds of implementation activities of the company should be stopped because it is no longer having a legal standing to operate. Considering that the environmental permit is the basis for a corporate to start business, including PT TMS.

However, the fact on the field is different. PT TMS disobeyed by continuing to mobilize heavy equipment to the company’s basecamp in Bowone village on Tuesday, June 13, 2022. This mobilization of heavy equipment was also escorted by the local police.

The steps taken by the police, apart from abusing their authority, also appeared to show the attitude of the police institution that has conspired with mining companies on one hand, and ignored legal decisions and the voices of residents’ rejection on the other. The police, who should have acted on behalf of the court’s decision, which was to ensure that PT TMS was not allowed to operate, actually seemed to be the custodian of the mining corporation.

Even worse, the road blockade carried out by residents today, Wednesday (15/06) had actually begun to receive repressive measures from the authorities. The police argued that the residents had “disturbed public roads”, even though the roads used by residents in the ambush were not special roads for industry. The road was built using the state budget which is actually prohibited from being used for industrial vehicles, including mining activities held by PT TMS.

In addition, the police also began to scare residents with criminal threats for residents who closed the road using coconut trunks previously on June 13, 2022. The statement of KOMPOL J. Sasebohe, S.Sos as the Head of the Sangihe Island Police Operations Division, which was recorded in the video that spread on Wednesday -15 June 2022- was an effort to suppress residents’ resistance.

The police should stop and process PT TMS properly according to law for mobilizing heavy equipment because it has committed a criminal act by using public roads for the mining industry, as mandated by Law Number 38 of 2004 concerning Roads Jo. Number 2 of 2022 concerning the Second Amendment to Law Number 38 of 2004 concerning Roads in Article 63 Paragraph (4) carrying imprisonment for a maximum of 2 (two) years or a fine of a maximum of Rp. 2,000,000,000.00 (two billion rupiahs) if violated.

Police officers should also appreciate the residents for enforcing the law when they contrarily guarded the company disobedience and law violation to the decision of Manado State Administrative Court.

Therefore, JATAM hardly condemn the repressive measures and threats from by the police officers to Sangihe residents. JATAM also urges the police to immediately process the abuse of PT. TMS according to law.

Contact Person:

  1. Alfred Pontolondo – Save Sangihe Island (SSI) – +62 813-4023-2525
  2. Jan Rafles Takasihaeng –Cordinator of the SSI – +62 823-4862-1456
  3. Muh Jamil – Lawyer Team of SSI, JATAM – +62 821-5647-0477