Communities from West Kalimantan call on Sime Darby to give them back their land. The complaint they filed at the RSPO in 2012 remains unresolved.
Bangkok, November 8th, 2016 – At a press conference during the 14th Round Table of the RSPO, a representative of indigenous villages in Sanggau, in West Kalimantan, called on Sime Darby to solve its landgrabbing issue and on the RSPO to improve the efficiency of its complaint mechanism.
“We demand Sime Darby to return our land and comply with RSPO criteria 2.2 regarding the rights of indigenous peoples” said Pak Redatus Musa, a representative of the villages of Kerunang and Entapang. He said that in 1995, Sime Darby’s subsidiary PT MAS approached his community to make a deal in which the company would ‘borrow’ the community’s land for 25 years, in return for a symbolic payment of IDR 50,000/ha. No contract was ever signed and the community has a very different understanding of the deal than the company.
PT MAS proceeded to obtain a HGU (a Cultivation Permit), which overlaps with indigenous areas, without informing the indigenous people. According to this HGU, the company has the right to cultivate the area until 2030.
The communities have been negotiating with Sime Darby since 2007, the year in which it took over the control of PT MAS. Despite all of the efforts to make progress, they filed a complaint at the RSPO in 2012, but until today the issue remains unresolved. They believe that Sime Darby and PT MAS have to solve the problem in timely and effective manner.
“Sime Darby is one of the largest producers of RSPO certified palm oil, yet in Sanggau it is involved in proposal for solution. In May last year the communities have sent Sime Darby a conflict resolution proposal, to which the company has still not replied”, said Edi Sutrisno, Advocacy campaigner of TuK Indonesia.
For more details: access the Sime Darby factsheet on the following link:
For further information, please contact:
Merel van der Mark – TuK Indonesia,
Tel: + 62 812 1880 7079, Email: [email protected]
This post is also available in: Indonesian