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Amien Critizes Freeport for Environmental Destruction

Published by MAC on 2006-01-25

Amien Critizes Freeport for Environmental Destruction

Jakarta (ANTARA News)

25th January 2006

Amien Rais, former chairman of the People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR), has critized PT Freeport Indonesia for what he considered as major environmental destruction and alleged corruption.

"Mining contract for PT Freeport Indonesia should be reviewed because it has destroyed our environment and exploit our natural wealth," Amien Rais, chairman of the National Mandate Party (PAN)`s advisory council, said in an interactive dialogue broadcast by state radio RRI here Wednesday morning (1/25).

Amien stated his determination to help fight corruption in Indonesia to save the nation. He believed that the war against corruption should start by fighting major cases such as those allegedly involving PT Freeport Indonesia, a US mining company operating in Papua, Indonesia’s eastern most province.

He cited information saying the authorities did not know exactly the volume of gold and copper taken and shipped directly out of the country by PT Freeport.

He admitted that it would not be easy to confront PT Freeport as it involves prominent figures and former high-ranking officials in the United States and Indonesia. However, he urged a number of the country’s elements to consistently correct the condition.

In the radio dialogue led by Parni Hadi, senior journalist, Amien denied that his commitment to fight corruption was reflecting his opposition to the government. "Opposition is a waste. I want to save the nation, therefore I support the government’s fight against corruption," he said.

He considered the environmental destruction caused by the mining activities as serious corruption. Amien said he got information that due to the mining activities in Papua, a mountain had disappeared and the site had become a lake.

Another case that he considered as a corruption scandal in the country was the selling of PT Indosat telecommunication company to a Singaporean company. He regretted that such a strategic company was sold to a foreign company.(*)

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