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Jakarta Post

Fishermen 'don't need rusunawa', only to have their ocean back

  • Callistasia Anggun Wijaya
    Callistasia Anggun Wijaya

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, September 15, 2016   /  03:12 pm
Fishermen 'don't need rusunawa', only to have their ocean back Fishermen of Muara Angke brandish a mock padlock in a theatrical rally on an artificial island known as Islet G in North Jakarta on April 17. They were protesting against the plan by the central government and the Jakarta administration to build 17 artificial islets in Jakarta Bay, where they look for fish. (The Jakarta Post/Seto Wardhana)

Jakarta Legal Aid Institute (LBH Jakarta) lawyer Tigor Hutapea criticized the plan by the central government and the Jakarta administration to put fishermen a 16-story low-cost apartment building (rusunawa) following the decision to continue on with the Jakarta Bay reclamation project.

Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama has proposed to build rusunawa as tall as 16 stories or even 20 stories to accommodate the fishermen.

"Looking at it from a social perspective, fishermen can't be placed in low-cost apartments. It will be hard for them if they have to carry their nets by an elevator to the 16th floor every day," Tigor told The Jakarta Post on Thursday. 

Tigor said it would be also hard for the fishermen to dry their catch and repair their broken nets in their apartments. To do both, fishermen need spacious room with direct sunlight. “Relocating them to rusunawa cannot be called a solution,” Tigor said.

Besides the housing and economic space problems, the fishermen would also find their fishing areas reduced because the public sea would have been turned into private properties in the form of 17 islets, Tigor said.

He said rusunawa could not answer the problem of dwindling income once their movement on the sea is limited.

"Fishermen don't need apartments, they only need the ocean back," he said. 

LBH Jakarta is one of the legal consultants of the Muara Angke fishermen in North Jakarta who filed a lawsuit against the construction permits of islets F, G, H, I and K with the Jakarta State Administrative Court. (evi)

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