A Questionable Land Bill

Translator

Tempo.co

Editor

Laila Afifa

27 September 2019 11:39 WIB

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The House of Representatives (DPR) should delay the ratification of the Land Bill at the end of this parliamentary session. It has many problems: not only it is at odds with the constitution, it’s also contradicting other laws and not in line with the agrarian reform.

The motivation behind this new law, as stated in the considerations, is actually good. Among the aims is to provide legal certainty for land ownership, prevent an ecological crisis, overcome agrarian conflicts and reduce economic disparity. But these noble aims are not reflected in the wording of the bill.

For instance, the bill does not specify the mechanism for comprehensively resolving agrarian conflicts. The regulations simply shift the problem to land courts, which have limited authority to deal with complex land problems.

The Dutch principle of domein verklaring, which was rescinded by the Agrarian Law, has been revived. This means that land without proof of ownership cannot be proved will be claimed as state land. This concept, which was applied by Stamford Raffles during the period of British rule in Indonesia, is clearly at odds with the Constitution. Many individuals and traditional groups that do not have land certificates for various reasons will lose out.

This law also appears to take the side with those with large funds and corporations. For example, Article 26 provides impunity to companies who have acted in breach of the leasehold regulations. Corporations that should be punished for taking control over too much land will be given absolution.

Many of these leasehold locations clash with permits for mining, the plantation industry, natural forests or protected forests. Some of the companies owning these concessions are currently being investigated by the Corruption Eradication Committee (KPK). Absolution will remove the criminal and civil problems that might appear as a result of breaches of regulations.

The major impact of this absolution will be the disappearance of millions of hectares of forest, turned into oil palm plantations. And this bill will also give not provide satisfactory social and ecological protection. If this all happens, President Joko Widodo will be compared to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who allowed the clearing of the Amazon for plantations, industry and mining without considering the environmental impacts.

Another weakness is that this bill also gives considerable authority to the minister for agrarian affairs in managing state land. The minister will be responsible for matters ranging from leaseholds and building permits to use permits and management permits. This extensive authority comes without control or a proper oversight mechanism. This will open the opportunity for abuses.

The same is true for the rules about the establishment of land banks – special bodies tasked with managing and distributing land. Like the authority of the agrarian ministry, the extensive powers of this body are not balanced with a detailed mechanism for establishment and oversight. This bill hands over the regulation of this important manner matter to the government.

The DPR should reexamine the land bill, and should not be in a rush to finish the deliberations of it before the end of its session. Meanwhile, the government should not allow this problematic bill to be ratified by the DPR. President Jokowi together with the House needs to ensure that this bill properly regulates the use of land for the interests of public welfare in line with the mandate of the Constitution.

Read the Complete Story in this Week's Edition of Tempo English Magazine



Govt Elaborates Criminal Code Bill Overseeing Communism and Marxism

14 jam lalu

Govt Elaborates Criminal Code Bill Overseeing Communism and Marxism

The Criminal Code Draft Bill (RKUHP) is still deemed by many to contain a variety of problematic articles.


Criminal Code Draft Removes Provision on Slander from ITE Law

1 hari lalu

Criminal Code Draft Removes Provision on Slander from ITE Law

Provisions on slander initially contained in the ITE Law will be removed through the Criminal Code Draft Bill or RKUHP.


Health Ministry to Issue BPJS Kesehatan Regulations for Rich People

4 hari lalu

Health Ministry to Issue BPJS Kesehatan Regulations for Rich People

Health Ministry will soon issue a regulation that will combine health insurance costs between BPJS Kesehatan and the private sector.


House Legislator to Push for a Democratic Criminal Code Draft Bill

6 hari lalu

House Legislator to Push for a Democratic Criminal Code Draft Bill

House (DPR) legislators and the government are set to discuss the final draft of the Criminal Code Bill (RKUHP).


Press Council Asks Jokowi to Postpone Enactment of New Criminal Code

8 hari lalu

Press Council Asks Jokowi to Postpone Enactment of New Criminal Code

The Press Council wrote to President Jokowi on November 17 asking for the enactment of the criminal code bill (RKUHP) to be postponed.


Govt Prepares Draft Bill to Boost Domestic Goods Spending

53 hari lalu

Govt Prepares Draft Bill to Boost Domestic Goods Spending

the government is formulating a new legal basis for domestic product spending, under the Public Goods and Services Draft Bill (RUU).


House Speaker Maharani's Speech at G20 Parliamentary Forum

55 hari lalu

House Speaker Maharani's Speech at G20 Parliamentary Forum

House Speaker Puan Maharani gives a speech at the G20 Parliamentary 20 side event held at the DPR headquarters in Jakarta.


DPR's Rp1.5 Billion 43-inch TV Procurement Heavily Criticized

55 hari lalu

DPR's Rp1.5 Billion 43-inch TV Procurement Heavily Criticized

PSI condemns the House of Representatives (DPR) over a Rp1.5 billion spending budget on 100 43-inch television sets.


Garuda's Aircraft Procurement; KPK Alleges Ex-House Member Receive Rp100bn Bribe

57 hari lalu

Garuda's Aircraft Procurement; KPK Alleges Ex-House Member Receive Rp100bn Bribe

Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has opened a new investigation into the graft case of the Airbus aircraft procurement for Garuda Indonesia.


House Approves Capital Injections for Garuda Indonesia

26 September 2022

House Approves Capital Injections for Garuda Indonesia

DPR Commission XI has approved the government's plan to disburse Rp7.5 trillion in state capital injections (PMN) to Garuda Indonesia.