Students slam NTT govt over montara oil spill case handling

Students slam NTT govt over montara oil spill case handling

Montara block. (guardian.co.uk)

Kupang (ANTARA News) - The Association of Indonesian Catholic University Students (PMKRI) has criticized the NTT provincial administration for being weak and slow in handling the Montara oil spill case.

"The oil spill happened more than two years ago, but our government seems to keep silent and apathetic instead of fighting for the fate of local fishermen and seaweed farmers who have become victims of the Montara oil spill pollution," Yoakim Abi, chairman of the PMKRI`s NTT chapter, said here on Friday.

Odorikus Goa Owa, the presidium chairman of the PMKRI`s Kupang chapter, shared Yoakim`s statement, saying that there was no coordination between the district and provincial governments in dealing with the case.

"The district and provincial administrations should have had common voice in fighting for the interests of the people who have become victims of the pollution. But, the fact is not like which later triggers a scandal as reported by Australia`s The Weekend West early this week," he said.

Yoakim Abi said the handling at the national level led by Transportation Minister Freddy Number in his capacity as the National Team of Emergency Response to Oil Spill in Sea (PKDTML) had failed because they worked at their own without involving concerned parties.

The government should involve the West Timor Care Foundation (YPTB) chaired by Ferdi Tanoni in dealing with the pollution case.

The Montara oil field explosion on August 21, 2009, has caused pollution in Timor Sea.

Thousands of coastal residents in NTT have been affected by the water contamination of crude oil spill, plumbum, and dispersant chemical powder of Corexit 9500.

The Indonesian government has demanded compensation amounting to US$2.4 billion from PTTEP Australasia, the Thai company operating the Montara oil field, for the oil spill in the Timor Sea.
(Uu.F001/HAJM)

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