TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Residents and farmers from Ngali Village in Bima Regency, West Nusa Tenggara on Tuesday, September 15, 2015 rallied in protest of the declining price of shallots over the past few months. The protesters blockade roads by throwing shallots on to the middle of the road.
The protest began at 09:30 morning local time at the di Ngali-Karumbu road. The farmers demanded that the government pay more attention to their livelihoods that are affected by the price plunge.
One of the protesters, Adika, said that farmers are forced to purchase shallot seeds for a considerably high state procurement price, which is Rp1.5 million to Rp2 million. However, after the harvest the government will not help with shallot sales even when the market price is incredibly low.
The protesters threatened to keep blocking the road until the government sets a minimum selling price for shallot.
"We will open the road if the government set a selling price of at least Rp1.5 million per kilogram," Adika said.
However, at around 11:30 the protesters agreed to unblock the road. Before dispersing, they threatened to re-close the road if there is no concrete step taken by the government to save farmers' income by immediately raising the price of shallots.
AKHYAR M NUR