Fri, 12 Dec 2003

City allocates Rp 47.5 b for Bantar Gebang dump

Bambang Nurbianto, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

The city administration is allocating at least Rp 47.5 billion (US$5.59 million) from its 2004 budget for the Bantar Gebang dump in Bekasi, three weeks before the contract with Bekasi to utilize the dump expires on Dec. 31.

City councillor Mukhayar of the Justice Party (PK) revealed on Thursday that of the amount some Rp 25 billion would be used to pay compensation to the Bekasi municipality.

"The figure was a result from a discussion between City Council's Commission D for development affairs and the administration when discussing the draft of the 2004 city budget," he said.

The remaining amount is for the development of a waste processing facility in Bantar Gebang at the cost of Rp 2.9 billion, maintenance at Rp 17.6 billion and operational costs Rp 2 billion.

The total budget is a part of Jakarta Sanitation Agency's budget of Rp 309.36 billion, which is taken from the 2004 city budget of Rp 12.16 trillion.

Chairman of Commission D, Koeswadi Soesilohardjo of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle, pointed out that the allocation was made after the sanitation agency failed to prepare alternative waste treatment sites.

Separately, Bekasi municipality spokesman Cecep Sutandi said that there had been no decision taken by the Bekasi administration to extend the contract with Jakarta, even with the Rp 25 billion compensation offered by the capital.

He said Bekasi Mayor Achmad Zulfaih had sent a letter to the Council to discuss the proposal but no decision had been taken yet.

Bekasi's decision to close the dump that has accommodated the capital's 6,000 tons of daily waste since 1986 worries Jakarta.

So far, the only alternative is a waste treatment facility in Bojong village, Bogor regency, that can accommodate 1,500 tons of garbage per day. Locals, however are strongly opposed to the dump, fearing possible environmental damage.

Two other waste treatment facilities in Duri Kosambi, West Jakarta, and on Jl. Cakung Cilincing in East Jakarta will not be ready until June 2004.