WARSI Deplores the Violence against the Orang Rimba

Agression in Bungo District

The Orang Rimba will never forget what happened on Tuesday afternoon (19/6). It turned out to be a very hideous and frightful day for Hari and Badai Groups – the Orang Rimba dwelling in Pasir Putih Social Residence, Dwi Karya Bakti Village, Pelepat, Bungo District, Jambi Province. On Saturday (16/6) – the second day of Idul Fitri (Eid Al-Fitr, an Islamic Celebration), Ilham, (the Orang Rimba of Kitap Group in Nalo Tantan, Merangin District) visited 51 households of these groups since they have already been converting themselves into Islam.

Somehow, Hari and Badai Groups deemed that Ilham has insulted their groups and conveyed offended words. As they were being offended, these groups reported this incident to the sectoral police of Pelepat District. This report was made based on the agreement between both of the groups. The agreement made in last 2017, was been agreed upon if the other conflict arose, there will be a denda adat (customary fine) where they would pay for IDR 20 million and will be doubled to IDR 40 million.

On behalf of this agreement, Badai and Hari Groups went to the sectoral police (polsek) of Pelepat District on Sunday (17/6), expecting some support of the police officers to make Ilham keep the agreement above. On Sunday afternoon, the police officers have conveyed that they could not find Ilham as it is not their territory so they have no right to make it. However, the Orang Rimba kept waiting for the police to find Ilham.

As there was no clarity in this case, the Orang Rimba Pasir Putih came to the Polsek to question this. They came driving 12 motorcycles while bringing cudgel one meter long. To see this, the police suddenly fired a warning shot for three times.

Unfortunately, the Orang Rimba assumed the warning shot as a malignancy. They were being ignited and came closer to the offices breaking its windows.

It was unexpectedly that the broke windows resulted a gun shot from the police to the Orang Rimba. Five of them got the shot and injured, they are Bujang (two shots on right leg, one on left hand), Jatim (one shot on hand and another on leg), Unom (one shot on right thigh), Buyung (one shot on leg) and Supri – son of Edi (one shot on left leg).

Badai, the tumenggung of his group was imprisoned as this case happened resulting more conflict between these groups. The Orang Rimba insisted the police to let Badai go, give them any indemnity and treat the injured group members. 

The Indonesian Conservation Community – WARSI felt really sorry for what happened to the Orang Rimba. “the police officers should not have fired the Orang Rimba, the group is not big-time gangsters anyway. Bungo is one of the districts where the Orang Rimba lives in. Yet, the Orang Rimba and Malay (villagers) have different opinion and point of view; the Orang Rimba indicates a gun – shot means worse situation and thus, they will fight back. Should polices working in the area where marginal tribes exist have such understanding to handle the community as basically, the Orang Rimba is afraid of the police officers, however, being ignited brings them to fight even doing something which might against the law,” said Rudi Syaf, the director of KKI WARSI – local NGO facilitates the SAM.

Rudi added that provoking the Orang Rimba and lead them to be anarchists is not a good thing. “the police officers should be the one guiding these groups especially when these groups have only little knowledge regarding the ius positum (positive low) of Indonesia,” said Rudi.

Therefore, according to Rudi, KKI WARSI appeal for government and police to solve this problem wisely and pointed out that the state comes to protect all communities not limited to the Orang Rimba.

In addition, the most important thing we could do is observing the root of the problem. “Warsi has already conducted a survey in 2008, and we have informed multi parties that the Orang Rimba especially in Sumatera Highway, where Ilham, Badai and Hari Groups live in, is an area covering no forests, while forests are the livelihood source of the Orang Rimba. moreover, forest loss indicates more marginal their life would be,” Rudi Said.

No more resources left is the main reason of conflicts arise between the groups and that might lead to other problems, although triggered by only simple things. Ilham of Kitap Group in Nalo Tantang, Merangin District has no forest as it has been converted into plantation by Sinar Mas Plantation, meanwhile, the forest of Badai and Heri groups has been converted into Industrial Timber Plantation belongs to Malaka Agro Perkasa and palm plantation belongs to Harum Group. They (Orang Rimba) are sent home at the moment, without any livelihood. It is totally different from other villagers where state accommodates them by transmigration scheme. “The state should also accommodate these groups within their livelihood resource by providing agrarian reform scheme for the Orang Rimba. “When they have had resources, we are sure the conflict would decrease and police officers do not have to participate in solving the similar issues,” he said.

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  • user image Dedy [2018-08-21]
    Terimakasih infonya bro...