TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Samboja Lestari Orangutan Rehabilitation Center discovered signs of forest encroachment at an orangutan rehabilitation area in East Kalimantan. The perpetrators are suspected to be migrants attempting to clear the land and transform it into a plantation.
According to Borneo Orangutan Survival (BOS) Foundation CEO Jamartin Sihite, the forest encroachment happened at the rehabilitation area that is managed by BOS Samboja. The 1,850-acre forest area in Samboja, East Kalimantan, has been managed by the non-profit organization for the past few years.
As wide as 339.25 acres of forest are being encroached at the location. The area that is used to train orangutans has transformed into an open area.
According to Jamartin, the similar findings have been reported but the authorities were not responsive.
Jamartin warned that entering an area inhabited by dozens of adult orangutans could be dangerous, as they can attack humans.
Jamartin also asked the local government of Kutai Kartanegara to keep their commitment to protecting the existence of the orangutan preservation forest in Samboja.
“If the forest that has been managed by BOS foundation over the past 15 years is destroyed, there won’t be any other place for orangutans to learn to live in the wild forest again,” Jamartin said.