Monday, 26 April 2010

Govt says no pardon for forest mafia

Govt says no pardon for forest mafia

Adianto P. Simamora, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta Mon, 04/26/2010

The government asserted that it would not issue any write-off for those who illegally converted forests as a move to root out forest mafia practices in the country.

Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan has sent letters to the governors to report the amount of converted forests, mostly done before their land use permits were issued, and overlapping permits in their respected areas.

The governors should submit their finding to Jakarta this month.

“The team will assess on whether illegal forest shift is due to permit snags or overlapping policies between central government and local administrations,” Hadi Daryanto, director general of forest production development at the forestry ministry, told reporters on Monday.

He said that the move was made to support the plan by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to fight against the forest mafia in the country.

The team will consist of officials from the Forestry Ministry, Environmental Ministry, Indonesian Police, Attorney General Office and the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK).

The letter sent in February asked the governors to include name of illegal companies, the location on whether in production forest, protected forest or conservation area.