TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - A distressing image of a traveling construction truck directly facing a Komodo dragon at the Rinca Island located in Labuan Bajo, East Nusa Tenggara, went viral as construction is ongoing to make the island’s natural landscape into a modern tourism site the government dubs the ‘Jurassic Park’ project.
Construction at the Rinca Island according to the Public work and Housing (PUPR) Ministry has entered the demolition phase of existing structures and piling the ground for the upcoming elevated deck which will be used as an access way connecting the Island’s facilities to the Loh Buaya Port. The facilities include Komodo dragon observation posts.
The PUPR Minister Basuki on Monday assures that construction in the Komodo’s habitat island - which has been named as UNESCO’s world heritage site - adheres to the environment, social aspects, and economy.
“We are always accompanied by rangers from the Komodo National Park which assures the construction process does not damage or disturb the Komodo’s habitat,” Minister Basuki claims.
However, protests have come from the West Manggarai communities joined under the FORMAPP which has criticized the use of heavy machineries and how its uses has affected the local ecosystem. The association also calls for the government to halt the “exploitative” project.
FRANCISCA CHRISTY ROSANA