KOMPAS – The fake timber legality verification document passed hundreds of containers containing billions of rupiah of illegal merbau from Papua and West Papau. Ten companies were allegedly involved and were still being investigated by the police.
Head of the Forest Protection Division of the Papua Province Forestry Office, Yan Pugu, was met in Jayapura on Thursday (01/17/2019), said that timber legality verification documents such as Forest Product Legality Certificates (SKSHH) were falsified to avoid inspection of the Forestry Service and Port Authority and Port Authority Office (KSOP).
“It’s very difficult to see the difference between original and fake documents. “The company immediately made the document after putting wood in the container,” Yan said.
Throughout December 2018 to January 2019, the Directorate General of Law Enforcement of the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (KLHK) assisted by the Navy thwarted the sending of illegal merbau wood from Papua and West Papua. Total seized 384 containers in four shipments with a total value of around Rp 120 billion or the equivalent of more than 7,000 cubic meters.
Previously, the Papua Forest Service foiled the delivery of 69 containers of merbau wood from Jayapura and Nabire, August 14, 2018. Five companies had timber worth Rp. 12.15 billion.
The five companies that want to send merbau timber through the Jayapura Port are PT Mutiara Lestari Papua, CV Mandiri Perkasa, CV Wamistar, CV Puspayoga, and PT Intico Pratama. “At the moment we are completing the case file,” Yan said.
Regarding the case of the last two months with evidence of 384 containers, the Coordinator of the Natural Resources Team of the Research and Development Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) Dian Patria asserted that his party would ask for clarification from the Directorate General of GKKK regarding the findings of 10 companies holding IUPHHK in Papua is suspected of having a problem.
Some of the findings are that the permit capacity is different from the physical field so it is used to hold illegal timber, does not have environmental permits, companies whose IUPHHK is not active but timber production goes on, and companies holding IUPHHK receive timber from the community without legal forest products.
“If it proves to be problematic, we will ask KLHK to revoke the timber legality certificate so that the company no longer exports wood,” Dian said.
Separately, the Special Criminal Investigation Director of the Papua Regional Police Senior Commissioner Edi Swasono said that he had collected data on 10 companies allegedly involved in sending illegal merbau wood. “We have not been able to publish the results of this investigation,” he said.
Yan Pugu revealed, a number of parties were involved in taking wood without permission in Jayapura, Sarmi, Keerom, to Nabire. They are community owners of customary forest areas, wood cutting tool providers, and companies that sell them outside Papua.
The mode is that the community rents out forest areas at a cost of Rp 200,000-Rp 300,000 per cubic meter. Then, the second party cut down the trees and changed them in the form of timber, bar wood and not processed wood products.
The third party, the company, has the role of paying the community and providing cars or trucks containing containers transporting timber from the forest to downtown Jayapura.
The company also hired the services of a sea freight forwarding company that allegedly without verifying timber legality or using invalid SKSHH documents.
“After obtaining a sailing approval letter from KSOP Jayapura, the shipping company then reported the amount of cargo to PT Pelindo IV Jayapura. “Pelindo also immediately transports all containers to the ship according to documents from the EMKL company,” Yan said.
PT Pelindo IV Jayapura’s Goods and Multifarious Services Manager Edi Herianto said that he did not know the legality of cargo and was only tasked to transport containers to the ship on time. “If there is a prohibition letter from KSOP and the Papua Forest Service, then we do not transport these containers to the ship,” he said.
In Surabaya, the Forestry Independent Monitoring Network is requesting an investigation into the case of sending illegal merbau wood from Papua and West Papua to the user’s company. Without it, the practice of crime will last.
Muhammad Ichwan, the National Dynamic Network of Independent Forestry Monitors, also considered that the government was not open to the public when investigating the case of illegal timber trade. In the case of shipping 384 containers, the Ministry of Environment and Forestry only published the initials of two of the four timber recipient companies: PT SUAI in Gresik and CV MAR in Pasuruan.
At a press conference in Surabaya last Wednesday, the Director General of Law Enforcement of the Ministry of Environment and Forestry Rasio Ridho Sani said that the KLHK’s commitment to reveal this case was very serious. All civil servant investigators 60 people from various regions were mobilized.
Investigation of illegal merbau wood was carried out in the past year to trace the mode. However, it was only at the end of 2018 that arrests were made. “This is done by the organized network”, he said.
KLHK Forest Products Processing and Marketing Director Rufi’ie said that the Directorate General of SFM is still coordinating with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry Directorate General regarding the handling of this case. He assured that KLHK is still committed to safeguarding the SVLK’s authority by giving sanctions to violators.
“If wrong, the company certification can be revoked by LVLK. If LVLK is inconsequential later KAN is revoked after a special audit. Officially revoking the ministry later because it determines the minister and KAN giving accreditation, “he said.
Rufi’ie said it could revoke the company’s access to the Forest Product Administration Information System (SIPUHH) or the raw material traceability system. As a result, the company can no longer export.
However, JPIK’s findings in the “2-Year Paper Position for the Implementation of the FLEGT License” mention the findings of permit holders whose certificates were frozen or revoked and timber that was not SVLK-certified could still enter SIPUHH. This allows mixing of raw materials with unclear sources. Therefore, JPIK requested that the data and information on timber administration and distribution in SIPUHH be accessed in detail by independent monitors and the wider community.