Aprindo blames govt for looting in earthquake-hit Palu
The Jakarta Post
The Indonesian Retailers Association (Aprindo) has blamed the government for the looting that occurred at dozens of retail outlets in Palu and Donggala in Central Sulawesi, which were hit by an earthquake and tsunami last week.
“We are concerned about the government's arrogance in allowing people to loot goods from retail outlets in Palu and Donggala, without [first] coordinating with their owners or management, or with the association,” said Aprindo chairman Roy Nicholas Mandey as quoted by kompas.com on Sunday.
Roy said 40 outlets and Alfamarts and one Hypermart outlet had been looted. Local residents had also stolen fuel from the trucks of state-owned oil and gas giant Pertamina.
Earlier, Home Minister Tjahjo Kumolo reportedly said that he was permitting people to take goods from the retail outlets upon the government's guaranty that it would compensate for all goods that the earthquake victims had taken.
Tjahjo later denied he had made the statement.
Roy said that widespread looting had occurred because the people assumed that the minister encouraged them to take goods from retail outlets, adding that Tjahjo’s statement could be interpreted in multiple ways.
In addition, he said, the employees of the retail outlets were also survivors of the earthquake and tsunami in Central Sulawesi.
“Up to the present, the Home Ministry and local administrations have not communicated with us [on the looting]. Meanwhile, even with state-owned enterprises, the governed made communications,” Roy said.
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