Jokowi Distributes Free Land in Social Forest Program

Monday, 13 November 2017 , 17:00:00 WIB -

President Joko Widodo is seen distributing land rights-of-use certificates to farmers in Probolinggo, Jawa Timur, Thursday (Nov.2).(ANTARA)

JAKARTA, GRES.NEWS - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has distributed rights-of-use certificates for 1,890.6 hectares of forest land to 1,685 farmers. The certificate extends for 35 years.

Jokowi reminds that the farmers must use the land or else the government would retake the land. The government will monitor the farmers’ activities on the land a regular basis.

"We have given them such a great right. If they decide to abandon the land, we will revoke the certificate and retake the land. They have been given land (to use, red), so they must assure that it is productive. They must cultivate usefull plants," he said, Wonoharjo Village, Jawa Tengah, Saturday (Nov.4).

Jokowi had already distributed similar certificates to farmers in Bekasi Regency, Jawa Barat, Wednesday (1/11). The villagers are now using the land as shrimp farms.

Jokowi hopes the program can improve the welfare of farmers. He also vowed to help the farmers obtain bank credit to develop their land, not forgetting to remind them to calculate the amount they would propose carefully to avoid a bad loan situation.

Meanwhile, Minister of Environment and Forestry Siti Nurbaya said the government has distributed 1.08 million hectares forest land, dubbed as social forest, to farmers across Indonesia and the government targets to distribute another 960,000 hectares.

In Jawa, 46,000 hectares will be distributed, at 48 locations in 30 regencies, Siti said. (rm)