Search

 

Cablegate: East Java Mudflow Update: Sidoarjo Regent Puts Priority On

VZCZCXRO9493
RR RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHJS #0052/01 1190917
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 280917Z APR 08
FM AMCONSUL SURABAYA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0202
RUEHJA/AMEMBASSY JAKARTA 0189
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON 0103
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 0105
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHINGTON DC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEHJS/AMCONSUL SURABAYA 0207

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 SURABAYA 000052

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EAP, EAP?MTS, AND EB/ESC/IEC
DEPT FOR DS/IP/EAP
DOE FOR CUTLER/PI-32 AND NAKANO/PI-42
COMMERCE FOR USDOC 4430

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON ENRG EINV ELAB PGOV ASEC ID
SUBJECT: EAST JAVA MUDFLOW UPDATE: SIDOARJO REGENT PUTS PRIORITY ON
RESETTLEMENT AS TEMPERS RISE IN ADVANCE OF COMPENSATION DEADLINE

REF: Surabaya 47 and previous

SURABAYA 00000052 001.2 OF 002


This message is sensitive but unclassified. Please protect
accordingly.

1. (SBU) Summary: As the May deadline for final compensation
payments near, tempers are rising among those displaced by the
disaster. An estimated 1,000 staged a demonstration April 28,
protesting Lapindo's decision to end food ration payments to
those living in the Porong Market on May 1. On April 25,
displaced villagers living on the abandoned toll road begged
local officials to improve living conditions. In a meeting with
Surabaya Principal Officer, the Regent of Sidaorjo said the
government placed priority on resettling the victims, while
building the social, health, and education sectors of the entire
regency. During speeches April 17 to mark the opening of a new
toll road to the Surabaya airport, neither President Yudhoyono
nor the East Java Governor mentioned the impact of the mudflow
on the local community or economy. End Summary.

Resettling Victims While Developing Sidoarjo
--------------------------------------------- -----------

2. (SBU) In a meeting with Surabaya Principal Officer on April
25, the Regent of Sidoarjo Win Hendrarso discussed the
challenges local government faced in addressing the impact of
the mudflow and investing in development throughout the regency.
Win Hendrarso emphasized that the Sidoarjo government placed
priority on resettling mudflow victims while continuing to
improve and build on regency-wide social, health, and education
sectors. The mudflow had a direct impact on the regency's
budget revenues with the closure of factories, the loss of jobs,
and the destruction of Sidoarjo's aquaculture industry.

3. (SBU) Win Hendrarso explained that the Sidoarjo government
proved training and capital assistance to displaced families to
reduce unemployment. After collecting date on the types of
training needed and desired, the government offered three-month
training programs in entrepreneurship, book keeping, and
management skills. So far, the government has trained 5,521
people. The government also provided capital assistance of Rp
350,000-500,000 (USD 38-59) per family. The funding came from
the Sidaorjo government, UNDP, and the president's contribution
to mudflow victims.

4. (SBU) Sidaorjo has launched a new program, "Sidoarjo Bangkit
(Awake) to Develop the Future," to motivate residents (not just
mudflow victims) to wake up and develop Sidoarjo. The program
is aimed at convincing Indonesian investors to do business in
Sidoarjo. Win Hendrarso commented that success depended on the
willingness of the banking industry to operate in Sidoarjo.
After the mudflow started, six of 18 districts were
"blacklisted" and bankers were not permitted to give loans to
customers or businesses living or operating in those six
districts. Today, three districts (Jabon, Porong, and
Tanggulangin) remain on the blacklist.

Demonstrations and Pleas for Help
------------------------------------------

5. (U) According to press reports, on April 28, an estimated
1,000 people displaced by the Sidoarjo mudflow staged a
demonstration demanding that Lapindo continue food ration
payments to families residing at the Porong Market. (Note: A
similar, smaller demonstration took place on April 25.) The
demonstrators were prevented from blocking the main East-West
road to Surabaya by dozens of policemen and a water cannon. The
demonstration ended after protestors met with the Deputy Regent
of Sidoarjo, who promised to bring their demands to the
attention of Governor Imam Utomo. According to the company,
Lapindo has been paying Rp 2.5 million/year (USD 275) in rental
assistance to each family and Rp 300,000/month (USD 33) in
living costs to each person from the impact area, including
those still living in the Porong Market. Lapindo announced
plans to end all such payments on May 1, 2008.

6. (SBU) At the invitation of the Regent's wife, Surabaya
Principal Officer joined the members of the Forum Perempuan
Peduli (FPP -- Women Who Care) for a visit to a tent camp for
villagers displaced by the mudflow on April 25 as part of Earth
Day events (septel). Approximately 1,000 people (272 families)

SURABAYA 00000052 002.2 OF 002


have been living in tents set up on the abandoned toll road
since their village was inundated with mud almost three months
ago. This group is awaiting compensation from the central
government as they do not qualify for compensation from Lapindo.

7. (SBU) The villagers begged the regent's wife for assistance
to improve living conditions. Clean water is limited, with 80
families sharing a tank of water that is delivered every day.
Toilet facilities are inadequate and food is primarily instant
noodles. The villagers also complained that children are
attending classes only two hours a day. The Regent noted to
ConGen that the villagers had refused offers to relocate them to
better facilities in the Porong market, where other displaced
visitors have been living pending compensation.
MCCLELLAND

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC