Judge Orders Energy Minister to Reclaim Abandoned Coal Mine in Riau

Monday, 04 December 2017 , 18:00:00 WIB -

Workers are seen working at a coal stockpiling company in Muarakumpeh, Muarojambi, Jambi, Wednesday (8/11). (ANTARA)

JAKARTA, GRES.NEWS – Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry is ordered to reclaim a coal mine that was abandoned by a mining company in Rengat Regency, Riau. The order was issued by Rengat State Court, Riau in response to the lawsuit filed by an environmentalist non-governmental organization (NGO) named Riau Madani Foundation.

Riau Madani Foundation files a lawsuit against three parties, a private sector, the local regent, and Energy and Mineral Resources Minister. However, the panel of judges led by Judge Tiwik, and accompanied by Judge Immanuel MO Sirat and Omaro Sitorus only granted some of the lawsuits. The panel of judges decided to issue a ruling against the third defendant, the Energy and Mineral Resources Minister.

The lawsuit was filed on September 19, 2016, and the panel of judges issued a ruling on November 8, 2017. However, Riau Madani Foundation received the information about the ruling on November 28, 2017.

In the ruling, the judges ordered the third defendant, Energy and Mineral Resources Minister, to reclaim an abandoned coal mine. The minister must fill up five holes in the mine and plant trees on the coal stockpile repository.

General Chairman of Riau Madani Foundation, Surya Darma Hasibuan, said the private sector didn’t receive any order because they have given reclamation fund to the Energy and Mineral Resources Minister.

"So the reclamation fund has been given to the Energy and Mineral Resources Minister. However, the ministry hasn’t reclaimed the land," Surya said.

Suya said that a private sector mined coal from 2008 until 2013. The mining permit ends after 2013 but the company stopped the mining since 2013. The company left the coal mine and give reclamation fund to the Energy and Mineral Resources Minister.

"The mine was left since 2013. The Energy and Mineral Resources Minister must reclaim the mine since the company left it because the reclamation fund has been given by the company," Surya explained.

Responding to the ruling, the Energy and Mineral Resources Minister has pleaded an appeal. (dtc/rm)

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