Rabu, 16 Januari 2019


Jakarta (Antara)- Nearly two years have passed since Novel Baswedan, senior investigator of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), was attacked with acid that caused him to lose vision in his left eye, but the perpetrators are still at large and unidentified until now.
         Baswedan was fatally attacked while heading home after performing Fajr, or the Dawn prayer, at a mosque nearby when two motorcyclists hurled acid on his face that injured his eyes, particularly the left eye, on April 11, 2017.
        Baswedan, a 42-year-old retired police officer, had joined the anti-graft agency in 2007 and was entrusted with investigating major corruption cases, including those allegedly involving several high-ranking officials. Since then, he has been frequently terrorized and attacked.
       Both the Jakarta Metro Jaya Police and the National Police's Crime Investigation Department have claimed that they are incessantly investigating the case, but the investigation has failed to trace the attackers so far.
        Finally, the Indonesian Police has announced that Chief of the Indonesian Police (Polri) General Tito Karnavian on Jan 8, 2019, signed an assignment letter on establishment of a joint team to investigate the case of Baswedan.
        The joint team, comprising 65 members representing officers of the Polri, the KPK, the National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM), the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), and NGOs, will work from Jan 8 to July 7, 2019.
        The joint team was formed at the recommendation of the Komnas HAM, Inspector General M Iqbal, spokesman of the National Police, stated on Jan 11, 2019.
       Iqbal later explained that the joint team is a technical team to investigate the case and not a joint fact finding team (TGPF) that has been suggested by several KPK commissioners and NGOs.

Sabtu, 12 Januari 2019


Jakarta, Jan 12, 2019 (Antara) - Leuser National Park is the last natural place on Earth, home to four mega fauna species of Sumatran rhinos (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis), Sumatran orangutans (Pongo abelii), Sumatran tigers (Panthera tigris), and Sumatran elephants (Elephas maximus sumatranus).   
     Leuser is also a habitat for most fauna, ranging from mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians to fish and invertebrates. It is a region having the longest list of birds in the world, up to 380 species, with 350 of them found in this park, which is also home to owa (Hylobates lar) and kedih (Presbytis thomasi).
        Moreover, the Leuser Ecosystem (KEL) is also a national strategic area owing to its environmental functions, notably as sources of clean water and air. It mitigates disaster impacts, such as erosion, pest, and climate change. 
   The KEL covers over 2.6 million hectares of intact forest area located in 13 districts in Aceh Province and three districts in North Sumatra.    
   Of the 2.6 million hectares, some 2.25 million hectares are in Aceh Province, while the remaining 384 thousand hectares are in North Sumatra Province. 
  Inside the KEL are the Mount Leuser National Park, nature reserve area, protected forest, production forest, limited production forest, permanent production forest, and convertible production forest.
       The natural scenery in KEL is charming and diverse, ranging from natural green scenery, crystal clear river water, beautiful waterfalls, diverse life, and fresh air, to a variety of rare animals.
         Aceh's KEL is home to 8,500 plant species, 105 mammal species, and 382 bird species.
        However, the Leuser environment is being threatened by development activities, as over four million people of Aceh live in KEL. The area has also been encroached by land clearance to make way for plantation, industry, and roads.

Kamis, 10 Januari 2019


    Jakarta, Jan 10, 2019 (Antara) - A deadly tsunami, triggered by Mount Anak Krakatau eruption in the Sunda Strait on Dec 22, 2018, has hit the tourism industry hard in Banten and Lampung Provinces, which are known for scenic beaches.
        Beaches in the two provinces facing the Sunda Strait, which is located between Java and Sumatra Islands, were deserted following the volcanic tsunami that killed at least 437 people in five districts.
        In Banten, over 90 percent of the hotel bookings were canceled prior to New Year's Eve due to the deadly tsunami that occurred three days prior to Christmas.
         Less than 10 percent, who retained their hotel bookings, were mainly journalists covering the post-tsunami event.
         To discuss recovery program for tourism industry in those provinces, the Tourism Ministry is to organize a coordinating meeting on Strategy of Tourism Recovery in Post-Sunda Strait Tsunami to be held in Anyer, Pandeglang, Banten Province, on Jan 11, 2019.
        Tourism Minister Arief Yahya is expected to officially open the meeting to be attended by governors of Banten and Lampung.
         The ministry has revealed that recovery program is expected to last from January 11 to April 12, 2019, to be followed by a normalization program from April 12 to December 31, 2019.
         The recovery program will involve the Banten and Lampung authorities and stakeholders in the tourism industry.
        The Tourism Ministry and stakeholders have prepared several plans of action to speed up the recovery of tourism.

Rabu, 09 Januari 2019


Jakarta, Jan 9, 2019 (Antara)- Rini Hartati and Yeni, inhabitants of South Lampung, used to enjoy the beauty of Mount Anak Krakatau, especially its red magma, which looked like firecrackers in the evening, from their homes located in the coastal area facing Sunda Strait, where the 'child' of the legendary Mount Krakatoa stands.
         Anak Krakatau has been undergoing a stuttering eruption since June 18, 2018, and an alert level 2 had been declared for it.
        As its volcanic activities increased, the volcano often showed spectacular views, particularly at night. Villagers living along beaches in Sunda Strait located between Sumatra and Java Island said they were very amazed of the view and they enjoyed watching it as it had never happened before. 
   But the volcanic activities of Anak Krakatau did not get special attention from the authorities until Dec 22, 2018, when a volcanic tsunami hit the provinces of Lampung (Sumatra) and Banten (Java) without early warning.   
     Mount Anak Krakatau¿s southern flank, measuring 64 hectares, slid into the ocean that evening, according to images from the European Space Agency's Sentinel-1 satellite, reported by www.nationalgeographic.com.
         Some 20 minutes after the flank collapsed, a wall of water roared ashore, sweeping up everything in its path, including boats, tables, and people along the coastal regions of Sunda Strait.
         Mount Anak Krakatau's height has decreased from 338 meters above sea level (mdpl) to 110 mdpl following the flank collapse. Full recovery will take longer. It may take 50 years before Anak Krakatau can reach its pre-collapse height.
        The tsunami affected five districts, namely Pandeglang and Serang in Banten Province; and South Lampung, Tanggamus, and Pesawaran in Lampung Province. 
   The death toll reached 437 people, and 23 others remained missing due to the tsunami. As many as 14,059 people were injured, and 33,721 others were displaced.

Sabtu, 29 Desember 2018


Jakarta, Dec 29, 2018 (Antara) - The Joko Widodo (Jokowi) - M. Jusuf Kalla administration has intensified infrastructure development across Indonesia during their first four-year term, starting October 2014, as the projects are expected to strengthen connectivity, economic growth, and national unity.
        Seeking a second term in office, incumbent Jokowi pledged that the government will next focus on making massive investment in human capital development to produce high-quality and competent human resources.
        The human resources development program, however, will be in synergy with other programs, including with physical infrastructure projects and technology innovation program.
        Hence, the government continues to allocate funds amounting to Rp400 trillion in the State Budget for the development of infrastructure in 2019, despite shifting its focus to the development of human resources.
       Funds for the 2019 State Budget will reach a total of Rp2,461 trillion for expenses, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani stated recently.
        Allocation for infrastructure will reach Rp400 trillion; health sector, Rp120 trillion; and education, Rp500 trillion, she outlined.
        During the 2015-2018 period, the government had developed new roads, stretching a total of 3,432 kilometers (km), in Kalimantan and Papua border areas as well as East Nusa Tenggara, among others. The new roads exceed the target of 2,650 km by 2019.
        The government has also built new bridges, spanning 39,798 meters, exceeding the target of 29,859 meters by 2019.

Jumat, 28 Desember 2018


Jakarta, Dec 28, 2018 (Antara)- Surabaya, the second largest city in Indonesia, is similar to other metropolitan cities, being characterized by traffic and crowds, and it never sleeps.
         Having quite a hot and humid weather, the city has a few nature tourism attractions, namely Kenjeran Beach and the Wonorejo mangrove forest. Other tourist attractions include the museums, monuments and parks.
         Under the leadership of Mayor Tri Rismaharani, the city has won a lot of international awards, with the latest one from "The 4th Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation".
         Surabaya, the capital of East Java Province, won an award for its project dubbed "Public Participation in 3R Waste Management for a Better Surabaya".
         Mayor Risma recently revealed that the city would have an urban forest to help curb flooding and pollution in Warugunung, Karang Pilang Sub-district.
         A small reservoir will also be built in the location to hold rainwater, and at least one thousand trees, mostly of fruit-bearing varieties, will be planted around the small reservoir.
         Beyond the monuments and the beach, Surabaya is dubbed as the City of Hero and actually has many historical and religious tourist destinations.
         The Surabaya Heritage Tract will take tourists on a tour around North of Surabaya or also known as Old Surabaya, by bus, to see old buildings constructed during the Dutch and Japanese colonial eras.
         The Surabaya Municipality is currently renovating old buildings as part of its program to promote its old city as a tourist destination, in cooperation with paint companies.
         Risma suggested that bright colors be used to beautify the old city. Irawan Bahtera, director of PT ICI Paints Indonesia, said a total of 117 old and historic buildings would be repainted as part of the urban tourism development program. The buildings are located on the Veteran, Karet, and Kali Mas streets, among others.
         Surabaya, which was the Dutch Indies port town in the 16th century, has a large modern port of Tanjuk Perak and a traditional harbor of Kali Mas, which are both located in North Surabaya.
         As a result, the city has a multiethnic population, with the majority being Javanese and others including people of Madurese, Chinese, Arab, and Indian descents.
         Its old city area is located in North Surabaya, specifically around "Jembatan Merah" or the Red Bridge, where one can find several of the best historical buildings, including structures with colonial Dutch architecture and Chinese temples.
         The most striking landmark in Surabaya's old city area is the 15th-century Ampel Mosque, which stands within the vibrant Arab quarter.
         The Grand Mosque of Sunan Ampel was built by Sunan Ampel, one of the Wali Songo, or the Nine Muslim Saints, in the 15th century and has become one of Surabaya's main religious tourism destinations.
         Born in 1401 in Champa, Cambodia, Sunan Ampel's real name was Mohammad Ali Rahmatullah and was a descendant of Ibrahim Asmarakandi, a prince of Champa, who lived and stayed in the town of Tuban in East Java.
         Sunan Ampel spent his entire life in the Ampel Mosque until his death in 1481. His tomb is located on the right side of the mosque.
         The Sunan Ampel Grand Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Indonesia and has been built using a combination of Javanese and Arabic architecture and strong teak wood.
         Meanwhile, Surabaya hopes to significantly improve tourist arrivals in East Java Province, which has surpassed its tourist target of 60 million people this year.
         "In East Java, the number of domestic tourist arrivals exceeded the target of 60 million, while the number of foreign tourists reached more than 600 thousand," Saidi, head of the East Java culture and tourism office, said recently.
         East Java has many diverse tourist destinations, including religious sites and eco-tourism destinations.
         Most of the domestic tourists visited religious sites, while foreign tourists visited eco-tourism destinations such as Mount Bromo (2,329 meters above sea level), Mount Semeru (3,676 meters), and Banyuwangi.
         The Central Government has helped promote the province's tourist destinations and improve the relevant facilities and infrastructure, including toll roads, airports and seaports.
         Tourist cruise ships have entered the province through seaports in Surabaya and other ports, including Gili Labak Island in Madura.
         Saidi stressed that tourism promotion would be optimized to attract more foreign tourists from varied countries to visit East Java.
         The government has planned to build a toll road connecting Kertosono, Kediri and Tulungagung, and to construct an airport in Kediri.
         In fact, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) expressed optimism that the toll road from Jakarta to Surabaya would be ready in December 2019.
         "I am very happy that this morning, we will inaugurate the Solo-Ngawi toll road in the Sragen-Ngawi segment. It means that soon, from Jakarta to Surabaya, at the end of this year, God willing, everything would be connected," President Jokowi remarked while inaugurating the Sragen-Ngawi toll road in Sragen, Central Java, last November.
         Jokowi believed that with the completion of the Jakarta-Surabaya toll road construction, the integration of the tourism industry would improve.