Kelompok Studi dan
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KSPPM NEWS

Visit of The Social Forestry Agency and Environmental Partnership ( Badan Perhutanan Sosial dan Kemitraan Lingkungan / BPSKL ) to Huta Aek Napa
Kalang BZ | | 2020-07-07 | 0 

Monday, July 7th 2020. Op. Bolus Simanjuntak and Op. Ronggur Simanjuntak indigenous people accompanied by Kelompok Study Pengembangan Prakarsa Masyarakat/KSPPM ( Study Group for the Development People’s Initiative ) and Aliansi Masyarakat Adat Nusantara Tano Batak/AMAN Tano Batak ( The Indigenous People Alliance of Archipelago Tano Batak) has receive a visit from the representative of The Social Forestry Agency and Environmental Partnership(Badan Perhutanan Sosial dan Kemitraan Lingkungan / BPSKL) and Forestry Management Unity ( Kesatuan Pengelolaan Hutan / KPH ) region IV, Balige. From BPSKL came Yoseph Tien and from KPH represented by Irwan Butar-Butar. The meeting was held in Sosor Liang, Sipahutar. The meeting was a follow-up to efforts to resolve conflicts between indigenous peoples and PT Toba Pulp Lestari (TPL).

Based on hindsight, the struggle for recognition of customary land territory has been going on for almost ten years. And indigenous people have also conveyed their demands directly to the Central Government, Mr. Joko Widodo (President of the Republic of Indonesia) and also to Mrs. Siti Nurbaya (Minister of Environment and Forestry). Facilitated by the Presidential Staff Office (Kantor Staff Kepresidenan/KSP), meetings of indigenous peoples with the central government have been held several times. Both the President neither the Minister of Ministry of Environment and Forestry have also given a very good response to the demands of the community by promising to immediately release the customary area from the PT Toba Pulp Lestari (TPL) concession and return it to the indigenous people. However, this decision can only be followed up if there is a Regional Regulation (Peraturan Daerah/Perda) on the Recognition and Protection of Indigenous Peoples in the Regency. At present the two communities together with other communities in Tapanuli are awaiting the issuance of the said Regional Regulation so that the realization of the promise of the President and the Minister can be followed up immediately.

The presence of BPSKL accompanied by KPH Region IV, Balige aims to deepen their knowledge and information related to indigenous peoples in Huta Aeknapa. Indigenous peoples enthusiastically re-explain their history in the Huta Aeknapa region and also the chronology of their struggle. Op.Rimpun Simanjuntak explained that they were the descendants of Op. Bolus Simanjuntak which from the pedigree is the 5th generation of Raja Simanjuntak and also the descendants of Op. Ronggur Simanjuntak from the 6th generation of Raja Simanjuntak who inhabits the traditional territory of Huta Aeknapa.

According to community officials, recognition of customary land and customary forest areas requires their survival in the village, because forest land is their living space, as well as a source of daily family life. Therefore, indigenous peoples strongly ask the government to give their customary land concessions to Toba Pulp Lestari to immediately revoke concession licenses from their customary territories. Maradona Simanjuntak, a member of Op. Ronggur community who is also a member of the North Tapanuli Regency’s Regional Representative Council (DPRD Tapanuli Utara) explained that the concept forestry and regional zones determined by the government in their area do not comply the meaning or cosmological concept of land by the indigenous people.

At the discussion, the representative of BPSKL and also KPH provided explanations referring to PERMENLHK No. 83 about Social Forestry. According to the indigenous people, those positivistic-legal did not really be understandable by them. As the result, many of their advocacy processes did not end so well. Meanwhile, the process of determining the land is done unilaterally by the government, whether it’s from the local government or from the central government without prior notice and dialogue with the indigenous people.

As a follow up to this meeting, Wednesday, July 8 th, 2020, the Team will descend together to the customary territory.***

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