HOW TO MAKE FORTUNES FROM PEACE:
Post-Helsinki reconstruction in Aceh (tentative title)
By George Junus Aditjondro
POST-tsunami reconstruction in Aceh, after the signing of the peace
memorandum beween the representatives of the Indonesian government and the
Free Aceh Movement (= GAM, Gerakan Aceh Merdeka) in Helsinki on 15 August
2005, has solidified the unholy alliance between foreign and domestic business
interests in the region, which is still strongly guarded by the Indonesian military.
One can describe the structure of businesses in the war-torn and tsunami-and-
earthquake torn country as a pyramid, with foreign businesses on the top of the
pyramid, followed closely by large domestic companies owned or with close
links to members of Soesilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Jusuf Kalla’s
administration; then state-owned companies called BUMN (Badan Usaha Milik
Negara) in Indonesian; followed by businesses owned by Acehnese
entrepreneurs, especially those pioneered by two entrepreneurs who were on the
opposite side of the political fence, Surya Paloh and Muzakir Manaf; then, much
smaller businesses owned by local Acehnese business people; and finally, at the
bottom of the pyramid, small farmers and fisherfolks, many of whom are in the
process of being squeezed out of their farms and fishing waters.
The largest companies on the top of the pyramid are ExxonMobil1,
which has been exploiting natural gas from the Lhok Sukon fields for the last two
decades. Together with Pertamina, the Indonesian state oil and gas company,
ExxonMobil owns PT Arun LNG, which liquefy the gas and export the LNG to
Japan and South Korea.
1). Last year (2006), Exxon Mobil became the biggest company on Fortune’s list of 500 largest US
companies. This offspring of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil, the trust that was broken up by
the US government under the Anti Trust Law nearly a century ago, produced 1.5 billion barrels
of oil and gas in 2005. Its market capitalization reached US$ 375 billion, with an annual profit of
US$ 36.1 billion in 2005. It paid US$ 8 billion in dividends to its 2.5 million shareholders,
employed 83,700 workers in six continents, and spent roughly US$ 15 billion on exploration and
production. The company’s US$ 36.1 billion in profits at a time when US citizens had to pay US$
2.50 a gallon for gasoline made Exxon Mobil a target of criticism by US citizens and Senators. It is
also drawing increased criticism by environmentalists for its support for drilling in the Arctic
National Wildlife Refuge (Fortune, 12 April 2006: 51-62).
ExxonMobil’s supremacy as the largest company operating in Aceh,
however, is currently strongly challenged by Indonesia’s largest private oil and
gas mining company, Medco2. This company is producing 4,500 barrels of oil
daily from its offshore Langsa Block, in a fifty-fifty joint venture with Mitsui Oil
Exploration Company from Japan (Kompas, 7 Jan. 2004; Warta Ekonomi, 21 Febr.
2005: 21, 27; Swasembada, 7-20 Sept. 2006: 34). That did not satisfy Medco’s
appetite for more oil and gas fields: in April 2006, Medco took over 50% of the A
Block concession area near Lhokseumawe, in a three fold joint venture with
Japan Petroleum Exploration Co. Ltd. and Premier Oil Natuna Sea BV. This latest
acquisition allowed Medco to suppy natural gas to the two fertilizer companies
in Aceh, namely PT Pupuk Iskandar Muda (PIM) and PT ASEAN Aceh Fertilizer
(Jakarta Post, 21 Sept. 2005; Koran Tempo, 22 Sept. 2005; Investor, 9-23 May
2006:25; Swasembada, 7-20 Sept. 2006: 48).
Since the restoration of peace in Aceh, the mining sector has expanded
beyond the oil and gas. Three companies are involved in exploring for gold, two
of them foreign companies and one national company. The two foreign
companies are Dutch Phillips, a Dutch company which has asked a favour from
US President George W. Bush, to approach his Indonesian counterpart, SBY, to
obtain a mining concession in Blang Pidie (Aditjondro 2005: 40). The second one
is the Canadian nickel mining company, INCO, through its subsidiary, Ingold.
And the third one is Freeport McMoRan, the US company which is mining the
copper, gold, and silver deposits in West Papua. This company is allegedly
negotiating a deal with Aceh-born national politician and businessman, Surya
Paloh, the chairperson of Golkar’s Advisory Board and close friend of President
Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (Nasution 2005: 54-6), to explore the gold fields in
Beutong Ateuh (Aditjondro 2007; Serambi Indonesia, 10 Febr. 2007).
Ironically, the Beutong Ateuh gold fields in the Nanga Raya district is
where formerly, a well-known dayah or pesantren was located, Babul
Mukaramah, which was led by a well-known Muslim scholar, Tengku Bantaqiah.
Unfortunately, on 23 July 1999, Tengku Bantaqiah and 56 other persons were
killed when the dayah was raided by military from the West Aceh command,
allegedly because the dayah supported the Aceh Freedom Movement (GAM)
(Rahmany P. 2001). An independent team of investigators from the Gadjah Mada
2). Medco is a family company of Arifin Panigoro, formerly a crony of Soeharto, whose in-law,
Edi Kowara Adiwinata, was given shares in the company, which after Edi Kowara’s death was
passed over to his son, Indra Rukmana, the husband of Soeharto’s eldest daughter, Siti
Hardiyanti Rukmana, aka Tutut. Apart from his oil and hotel business, Arifin and one of his
siblings, Yunar Panigoro, own a timber company, PT Sega Tunggal Indonusa (PDBI 1994: B-261).
University in Yogyakarta, which carried out their investigation, suspected that
economic rather than political reasons were motivating the Army raid on the
dayah, which was burned flat to the ground (TNI Watch! 1999). Their suspicion
has been proved well-founded, now that Surya Paloh’s employees are exploring
the gold deposits of Beutong Aceh.
In addition to gold mines, Surya Paloh (born in Kutaraja [= Banda Aceh]
on 16 July 1951), is also exploring the coal mines in Meureboh and Kuala in West
Aceh district, which will be mined, a.o. to fuel the steam power plant that he is
going to build in the region. This mining enterprise is managed by a company
owned by Paloh, called PT Meuwah Perkasa. Interestingly, the capital for Paloh’s
new business enterprises in Aceh comes partly from the Rp 200 billion donations
from viewers of Paloh’s television station, Metro TV, aimed to help the victims of
the December 2004 earthquake in Aceh (Nasution 2005: 33). These funds are
managed by Paloh’s Sukma Foundation, which is officially, financing charity
activities, namely the reconstruction of schools in tsunami and earthquake-hit
villages (Aditjondro 2007).
Surya Paloh, however, is not entirely a newcomer to the Aceh business
scene. His catering company, PT IndoCater, which employs more than 3,000
workers, and obtained credits from Bank Bumi Daya (BBD) due to Paloh’s
position as chairperson of the Veteran Children’s Communication Forum (FKPPI
= Forum Komunikasi Putra-Putri Purnawirawan Indonesia) and closeness to the
Soeharto family3, has catered for the logistics of many large foreign companies,
a.o. Exxon Mobil in Lhokseumawe and PT Pupuk Kaltim in East Kalimantan
(Swasembada, 31 May-21 June 2001: 83; Nasution 2005: 40-1 ). But with the
reconstruction rush in his home province, many new business opportunities
have been opened for him, using charity funds from MetroTV ‘s viewers.
A similar strategy of improving one’s company’s public profile by
donating relief funds generated from the public, while expanding businesses
3 ) Surya Paloh is married to Rosita Barack, an elder sister of Rosano Barack, also known as Cano.
Cano is a close friend of Bambang Trihatmodjo, former President Soeharto’s second son and
owned of the Bimantara business group. In fact, Cano is also a founding shareholder of the
Bimantara Group. In addition, Surya Paloh collaborated with Bambang Trihatmodjo in
developing the veteran children’s organization. FKPPI (Nasution 2005: 42, 44, 47). Paloh’s son,
Prananda, is also very close to Tommy Soeharto, since Tommy’s luxurious US$ 13.7 million
yacht, Obsessions, was for years registered in Cayman Islands under the Prananda’s name
(interviews with a key informant in Australia, 1998 till 2001).
enterprise in the tsunami and earthquake-torn province is also adopted by other
Indonesian celebrities, such as Aburizal Bakrie and Siti Hartati Murdaya.
Aburizal Bakrie is, in addition to being the Coordinating Minister for
Social Welfare, in charge of the rehabilitation of Aceh, a major shareholder in the
Bakrie Group of companies. As in the case of Surya Paloh, the Bakrie Group also
own a television station, AnTV, together with Parliament speaker, Agung
Laksono. The station is daily managed by Ical’s son, Anindya N. Bakrie. Viewers
donations for Aceh disaster victims, called Program Dompet antv Peduli-Tabahlah
Indonesia, is used by AnTV to set up nine new dayahs for female students in
Banda Aceh and Meulaboh, the two major earthquake and tsunami hit towns.
This educational program is carried out by AnTV in cooperation with Pesantren
As-Syafiiyah, led by well-known female Muslim scholar, Tuty Alawiyah (Press
Release from Program Dompet antv Peduli-Tabahlah Indonesia, 13 May 2005).
Aceh, dumping ground for carcinogenic substances?
UNFORTUNATELY, while helping to educate female Acehnese children,
the Bakrie family has simultaneously carried out a disastrous housing scheme.
The family’s charity arm, namely the Bakrie Foundation, has been strongly
criticized by environmental NGOs in Aceh, for building 240 houses from
asbestos in the Deyah Raya Village in the Syiah Kuala Subdistrict in Aceh’s
capital city, Banda Aceh. Ironically, although Andy Siswanto, the Housing and
Resettlement Deputy of the Aceh and Nias reconstruction supervisory body, BRR
NAD-Nias (Badan Koordinasi Rehabilitasi dan Rekonstruksi Nanggroe Aceh
Darussalam dan Nias), has on 8 January 2007, issued an official Memorandum No.
M-010/BRR.08/I/2007, prohibiting the use of asbestos in houses built for the
tsunami victims, BRR NAD-Nias has not had the courage to force the Bakrie
Foundation to replace the houses which they build from that carcinogenic
substance (WALHI Aceh Press Statement, 2 February 2007).
What we see here is a sophisticated way of getting rid, or marketing,
products which are prohibited in other countries, and even also in Indonesia,
through disaster relief work which is normally seen as charity. According to
WALHI Aceh Advocacy and Campaign Manager, Dewa Gumay, asbestos used
in the houses built by the Bakrie Foundation comes from Bakrie Group member
The Bakrie Foundation, however, is not the only pseudo-commercial
charity using this dangerous substance. As I observed on 8 February 2007, the
Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation4 has built even more houses with asbestos walls in
the West Aceh district. It is planning to build 1,100 of such houses in the
Meureboh subdistrict, of which about a half of them had been finished during
my field observation. Likewise, as I observed on 12 April 2007 with colleagues
from WALHI Aceh and Acehkita tabloid, the same foundation has built 1800
similar houses with asbestos walls near Banda Aceh, the capital of Aceh.
This charity is supported by several large Buddhist-Chinese owned
business conglomerates, such as the Artha Graha Group of Tomy Winata and
Sugianto Kusuma (aka A Guan) and the Sinar Mas Group of Eka Tjipta Widjaja
and his sons and daughter. Sinar Mas, is currently approaching Ir. Azhar
Abdurrachman, the bupati, or, district head of Aceh Jaya, to expand its oil palm
plantations from North Sumatra, Riau, Jambi and Kalimantan to Aceh (Serambi
Indonesia, 12 April 2007).
Interestingly, the Artha Graha Group has close connections to President
SBY, through SBY’s security advisor, Ret. Mayor General TB Silalahi, a top
executive of Artha Graha who has facilitated the expansion of Artha Graha to
Nias, by forming joint ventures with the North Sumatra top Chinese business
triad (see Aditjondro 2006: 416-8). And although Artha Graha’s proposal for a
blue print for the reconstruction of the fatally damaged district capital of Aceh
Barat, Meulaboh, has been rejected, due to the opposition of Western Aceh
religious leaders (ulama),5 the group still operates – indirectly -- in Aceh.
Hence, the foundation is one of the largest private Indonesian non-
governmental contributors during the emergency phase as well as currently
during the rehabilitation and reconstruction phases in Aceh. According to
Sugianto Kusuma, the deputy chair of the foundation has claimed that it was
going to build 2000 permanent houses in Banda Aceh and 1,000 in Meulaboh
(Aditjondro 2005: 37). Those are only part of the entire range of reconstruction
activities of this foundation, which has last year reached US$ 37 million, and
4 ) The headquarters of this foundation is in Taiwan. It is its Indonesian branch which is building
the asbestos walled houses in Aceh, presumably with the financial support from the business
conglomerates owned by the executives of its Indonesian branch.
5 ) Is is well-known among Aceh ulama and pro-democracy activists that Artha Graha, whose
main financial wizard is Sugianto Kusuma, also known as Aguan under his Chinese name, made
their fortune by organizing gambling and high class prostitution (see Aditjondro 2006: 419-20).
Hence, the Acehnese ulama rejected Artha Graha’s offer, but did not resist the construction of
thousands of houses by the Buddha Tzu Chi Foundation where Sugianto Kusuma is vice-
chairman of the Indonesian branch.
includes economic development, education, infrastructure, housing & land,
institutional development, general public services, institutional development -
public order and safety, in the districts of West Aceh, Greater Aceh, and the city
of Banda Aceh (BRR NAD-Nias 2006: 275).
So, one can see from these two examples of large housing schemes that the
BRR does not seem to have the power – or the courage – to prohibit the use of
dangerous substances in the housing schemes. It may not even have the power of
courage to act as a filter for other harmful projects to be build in Aceh, which
may be caused by the lack of impartiality of the BRR head, Kuntoro
Mangkusubroto, as we will see later in this paper.
State-owned civil engineering companies:
WITH some exceptions, as we will see later in this paper, the
reconstruction of major infrastructure projects, damaged by the December 2004
tsunami and earthquake, has been carried out by civil engineering companies
owned by the Indonesian government and managed under the umbrella of the
Department of Public Works. PT Waskita Karya, also known as WIKA, is one of
them. PT PP (Pembangunan Perumahan) is another one, which has been the main,
or sole contractor of the Buddha Tzu Chin Foundation in building the asbestos-
walled public houses in Banda Aceh and Meulaboh.
PT PP has also been chosen as the contractor to build the high-rise houses
for lecturers of IAIN Ar-Raniry postgraduate program, a dormitory for students
of Syiah Kuala University, both in Banda Aceh, and an integrated school from
kindergarten to high school in Meulaboh, all financed by donations from readers
of Kompas, Indonesia’s largest daily newspaper (Kompas, 28 Dec. 2005: 36).
Three other state-owned companies involved in the reconstruction of
Aceh are PT Adhi Karya, PT Hutama Karya, and PT Nindya Karya (Trust, 4-10
April 2005: 74).
Reconstruction coordinator as cement producer:
THE reconstruction of millions of houses and other buildings, has
created a lucrative market for several cement producers, such as the Andalas
cement factory (PT Semen Andalas Indonesia), a joint venture partner of the
French Lafarge company, which has a wide network of distributors
(Advertisement in Serambi, 8 Febr. 2007). PT Semen Andalas Indonesia, however,
is facing tough competition from cement imported from Java from PT
Indocement Tunggal Prakarsa Tbk and PT Holcim Indonesia Tbk, formerly
known as PT Semen Cibinong, and from PT Semen Padang, a state-owned
company based in West Sumatra.
Both Java-based cement factories formerly belonged to members of
Soeharto’s extended family. PT Indocement, which uses the brand name, Semen
Tiga Roda, once belonged to Liem Soei Liong and Soeharto’s cousin,
Sudwikatmono, while PT Semen Cibinong once belonged to Hasyim
Djojohadikusumo, whose elder brother, (Ret) Lieut. Gen. Prabowo Subianto had
married Soeharto’s second daughter, Siti Haryati Hediyadi, or Titiek. But while
PT Indocement has been taker over by Heidelberger Cement Group, PT Semen
Cibinong has been taken over by a Swiss company. Of these three cement
producers, PT Holcim Indonesia Tbk enjoys special consideration to be used by
contractors in Aceh, since Kuntoro Mangkusubroto, the head of BRR NAD-Nias,
is also a commissioner of PT Holcim Indonesia Tbk since 11 December 2001 (Ad.
in Jakarta Post, 4 April 2007, p. 9).
Kuntoro Mangkusubroto’s special links with PT Holcim Indonesia has
also resulted in special deals with the company, not necessarily related to its
specialty in producing cement. The company had obtained a special order to
destroy outdated medicines after the tsunami on the island of Nias, which also
falls under BRR NAD-Nias supervision (B-watch, Oct. 2006: 34).
Hence, Andalas, Padang and Holcim cement are the three most popular
brands of cement used in many infrastructure projects in Aceh. These projects
have been distributed to several foreign and domestic companies. The
reconstruction of the Krueng Raya harbour in Aceh Besar district, has been
carried out by a Dutch company, while the reconstruction of the Meulaboh
harbour has been carried out by the Singaporean branch of Mercy Corps. The
construction of the Meulaboh airport has been carried out by Schiphol Airport
BV, the Dutch airport construction and management company which has also
built the new airports of Manado and Ambon (Aditjondro 2005: 37).
Reconstruction support services:
The influx of expatriates involved in, firstly, the relief work, which has
been followed by rehabilitation and reconstruction work, has obviously created
the demand for hotels, cafes, malls, supermarkets, and, not to forget, the up-to-
date communication gadgets, such as cell-phones. Swiss-belhotel International,
has already set up its hotel in Banda Aceh, where the corporate rate for rooms is
around Rp 650,000 per night. A slightly cheaper hotel is Oasis, which is owned
by Todung Mulya Lubis, a well-known Jakarta-based top business lawyer and
human rights activist, and his business partner, John Sinaga, an architect and
owner of Hotel Silintong on the Samosir Island in the Toba Lake. The daily rate
of this 3-starred hotel is up to Rp 500,000 per night. Then, although it has an
expatriate manager, the Banda Aceh Swiss-belhotel is a joint venture between
Swiss-belhotel and Hermes Thamrin, the CEO of Nokia Indonesia, as the largest
shareholder, Surya Paloh, and AzwarAbubakar, a former governor of Aceh.
Starbucks and Caswell are the two most frequented Western-style coffee
shops in Banda Aceh. While Starbucks only serves coffee from different parts of
the world, Caswell and Pace Bene, an Italian food restaurant which is also
located in Peunayong, in the heart of Banda Aceh, also serve alcoholic drinks.
This shows a degree of tolerance shown to non-Acehnese, especially expatriates,
since the consumption of alcoholic drinks is prohibited under Islamic law. Fast
food restaurants, such as KFC, A & W, Pizza Hut and Pizza House, have also
appeared in Banda Aceh.
Not surprisingly, and not necessarily connected with the Helsinki
agreement, Finland-made Nokia cellphones seem to be the most popular
cellphone brand in Aceh, or at least, in Banda Aceh. Its show room appeared in
Banda Aceh in mid 2006 in Peunayong, in the centre of Banda Aceh, where
Caswell is also located. The second most popular cellphone used in Aceh, is Sony
Ericsson (Basuki 2005).
Different brand of cars are also competing for a market share in Aceh.
Unlike other parts of Indonesia where cars originating from Japan and South
Korea dominate the market, in Aceh cars from other parts of the world,
especially Western Europe and North America, are trying to outsale each other,
using different marketing gimmicks. PT BMW Indonesia is trying to compete
with Ford, which claims to be the largest automotive company in the world, by
donating three laboratory cars to secondary school children in Banda Aceh, in
collaboration with Indonesia’s second largest Islamic organization,
Muhammadiyah (Serambi Indonesia, 11-12 April 2007). This is probably their way
to show to Aceh’s young generation, that German automotive technology,
represented by BMW, is superior to the US, or Ford, technology.
While cars, cellphones, cafes, and fast food are more closely associated
with the middle and upper classes involved in the ‘reconstruction business’, one
company which has certainly benefited from the 2004 tsunami and the following
emergency relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction work is PT Indofood Sukses
Makmur. Instant noodles made from flour, which in turn is made from wheat
imported from Australia, the US, Canada and Argentina, have increased the
value of Indofood’s shares (Trust, 17-23 Jan. 2005: 17, 10-16 April 2006: 8).
The Vice President’s business interests:
DISASTERS and the following emergency relief work, rehabilitation and
reconstruction often involves instant procurement of vehicles to transport
logistics needed by the disaster victims. In the case of Aceh, Vice President Jusuf
Kalla (JK) and President SBY themselves have been accused of manipulating
their power to use public funds to import twelve helicopters, presumably to be
used during natural disasters. Interestingly, those twelve used German
helicopters were purchased not by the Indonesian government, to begin with,
but by a private company, PT Air Transport Services, owned by the Vice
President’s younger brother, Achmad Kalla. Nevertheless, the Vice President, in
his private conversation with the President on 6 December 2006, and the
President himself in his memo to the Finance and Transportation Ministers on 7
December 2006, urged the government to pay hourly charter rates of those
helicopters of US$ 1500 for 45 days, enough to cover the purchase of those
privately-owned helicopters. To insure those imported helicopters, PT Air
Transport Services appointed PT Asuransi Indo Trisaka, a company partly
owned by Alwi Hamu, a long time close friend and staff of the Vice President
(Tempo, 1 April 2007: 26-36).
Fortunately, since Finance Minister Sri Mulyani refused to allocate those
funds, the helicopters were seized by Indonesian custom officials, since the
company owed Rp 2.1 billion duties to the government, after some of those
helicopters had been used to help flood victims in the Aceh Tamiang district, last
Rumours are circulating in Banda Aceh and Meulaboh, that Kalla’s
business interests in the reconstruction of Aceh, are not limited to that helicopter
scandal. According to Intelijen, a weekly intelligence tabloid, JK is grooming
three persons to conduct recovery businesses in Aceh, namely his brother-in-law,
Aksa Mahmud, owner of the Bosowa business group, Paskah Suzetta, Minister of
Development Planning and head of the National Development Planning Body
(BAPPENAS), who is also a respected property developer, and an un-named
business person of Chinese origin. The latter is involved in development projects
in Meulaboh (Intelijen, 4-17 Jan. 2007: 15).
Further investigation is needed to determine who, or which company, if
any, are acting as proxies for JK and his extended family. Possibilities are still
open that some companies linked to the Vice President are, or, will take part in
the reconstruction business in Aceh. In particular, companies run by his son-in-
law, Susanto Supardjo, husband of Muchlisa (‚Lisa‛) Jusuf (38), the VP’s eldest
daughter. This is considering the fact that Susanto and Lisa are running a family
owned construction firm, PT Kalla Inti Karsa, which is involved in the oil
business in Bontang, East Kalimantan, and is aiming at a share in the oil
construction business in the newly opened Cepu Block in Central and East Java
(Gatra, 20 Oct. 2004; Kontan, 24 August 2005; Prospektif, 10-16 April 2006: 15, 21).
One of JK’s family companies, PT Bumi Karsa, also has a history in
building roads and dams, and upgrading airports, namely the Makassar, Biak,
and Banda Aceh airport. Another Kalla family company, PT Kalla Lines, has a
special ship to carry asphalt for the reconstruction of roads. This ship is managed
by Langlang Wilangkoro, JK’s son-in-law from his second daughter, who also
manages PT Nusantara Air Charter, which leases transport airplanes such as
Fokker F-28 (Prospektif, 10-16 April 2006: 21; Tempo, 30 Oct. 2005: 84). Hence, it is
quite possible that the Vice President’s relatives also have their fingers in Aceh’s
reconstruction pie. Anyhow, with the appointment of Halim Kalla, one of the
Vice President’s younger brothers, as a commissioner in Lion Air since the end of
2004 (Prospektif, 10-16 April 2006, Cover Story, pp. 12-19), the Kalla family is also
benefiting from the increased flights to and from Banda Aceh.
Muslim organizations and parties benefiting from the reconstruction pie:
DESPITE its specific character as the only province with strong Islamic
characteristics, recognized by the Indonesian state through Law No. 11/2006 on
Aceh’s Government (Undang-Undang No. 11/2006 tentang Pemerintahan Aceh),
only a few Indonesian Islamic organizations and political parties with close ties
with the current SBY-JK regime, have been prioritized in distributing
rehabilitation and reconstruction funds in Aceh. The first one is the 40-million
members strong Islamic social and educational organization, Muhammadiyah,
currently led by Din Syamsuddin, whose cadres dominate the Department of
Education, has its national headquarters in Yogyakarta, where many
Muhammadiyah members are teaching at the Gadjah Mada University,
including the current Minister for Education, Bambang Sudibyo. Then the second
one is PPP (Partai Persatuan Pembangunan, or, United Development Party),
whose cadre, Bachtiar Chamsyah, holds the lucrative portofolio of Minister for
Social Affairs. In fact, the Department of Social Affairs, according to my sources
in Aceh, has encouraged several international relief organizations to work closely
As a result of this political background, through its headquarters in
Yogyakarta, Muhammadiyah and its affiliated organizations have become
partners of the World Food Programme (WFP) and UNICEF, two UN agencies,
and Mercy Relief Singapore. WFP has distributed food aid, after they had been
identified by PT Surveyor Indonesia, whom in turn was appointed by the
rehabilitation and reconstruction coordinating body, BRR NAD-Nias. UNICEF
has supported the reconstruction of schools and child care centers, while Mercy
Corps Singapore, in addition to assisting the rehabilitation and reconstruction of
schools, has been involved in the reconstruction of the Meulaboh port, which
was completely destroyed by the December 2004 tsunami.
In a similar fashion as the Muhammadiyah connections, Minister
Bachtiar Chamsyah, a PPP appointee, has distributed part of the Social Affairs
aid through PPP members as contractors. This has especially been the case with
fishing boats donated to fisherfolks, and calves donated to farmers. These calves
have been donated to farmers who were members of an organization promoted
by the Department of Social Affairs, FKPSM (Forum Komunikasi Pekerja Swadaya
masyarakat ). Unfortunately, boats and calves which do not match the described
qualities have been observed by NGO activists whom I interviewed in Meulaboh
on 8-9 February 2007.
Military business links:
DURING the initial emergency phase, the military played an important,
and in some places, decisive role in monopolizing the relief distribution. The
reborn Islandar Muda Army Command (Kodam I Iskandar Muda) is divided
into two Military Resort Commands (Korem), namely Korem 011/Liliwangsa,
centred in Lhokseumawe, and oversees the huge industrial complexes on Aceh’s
east coast, and Korem 012/Teuku Umar, which overseas security in Aceh’s
capital, Banda Aceh, the free trade zone of Sabang on the island of Weh, and the
Greater Aceh (Aceh Besar) district. During the initial emergency relief stage,
Army Colonel Gerhan Lantara, Commander of the Korem which overseas
Meulaboh, practically monopolized all the relief distribution which had to be
pooled under Army Supervision in the Army barracks.
This East Timor war veteran, who had been involved in provoking the
bloody crackdown on youth activists at the Santa Cruz cemetery in Dili on 12
November 1991, personally signed all memoranda to release the relief from the
Army-controlled depot. This military red tape had caused many disaster victims
to suffer from hunger, causing them to protest against Col. Lantara’s red tape.
Lantara was eventually removed and was honoured by his superiors in Jakarta,
although he and his subordinates benefited personally from the relief aid. In
addition to cutting their own part from the relief aid, military personnel also
looted the people’s personal items, since they controlled the entire town of
Meulaboh during the first fortnight after the tsunami. Hence, NGO activists I
have interviewed in Meulaboh, had questioned the honoring of Col. Lantara.
Meanwhile in Banda Aceh, relief distribution was monopolized by the
Air Force, since they oversee the security at the Islandar Muda airport, outside
Banda Aceh. This had caused trouble for Farid Faqih, an NGO anti-corruption
activist who tried to release and distribute some of the relief at the airport for
tsunami victims who had not been assisted, that far. He was beaten and detained
for a short period by Airforce personnel at the Iskandar Muda airport, before
being released due to public pressure.
During the initial rehabilitation and reconstruction phase, the Army was
also involved in opening up the road from Teunom to Arongan in West Aceh.
Currently, the military does not seem to carry out their own businesses in the
Western Aceh districts, but act, instead, as guardians for Surya Paloh’s coal and
gold mining operations. Paloh is, in fact, the son of a retired military officer, and
was head of the retired military children’s organization, FKPPI (Forum
Komunikasi Putra-Putri Purnawirawan ABRI Indonesia).
Military businesses, can be differentiated between businesses affiliated
with military institutions, namely the KODAM, KOREM, and KODIM;
businesses owned by relatives or family members of top military officials; and
the renting of military owned properties to private companies. Examples of the
first type is the special relation between Husaini Setiawan from PT Kana Family
Group with the KOREM in Lhokseumawe, with the approval of the KODAM,
and the opening up of the military owned golf course in Lhok Nga to the public.
An example of the second type is how children of the Army Commander, Mayor
General Supiadin AS, like children of other VIPs at provincial and district levels,
benefited from the reconstruction pie by using cronies such as Dek Gam and
Dek Cut through PT Sinar Desa, and Marzuki Bintang. An examples of the third
type is the renting of military land in the Neusu area in Banda Aceh to Wong
Solo, a Yogya based chicken dishes restaurant.
Finally, a handful of companies set up during the Soeharto presidency
and were formerly owned by Soeharto’s relatives and cronies, also involve
retired officers. One of the most outstanding ones is PT Tusam Hutani Lestari, a
timber concession in Takengon, Central Aceh which is owned by (Ret)
Lieutenant General Prabowo Subianto and his younger brother, Hasyim
Djojohadikusumo, whose office is in the Bidakara Tower on Gatot Subroto Road
in South Jakarta. Apart from PT Tusam Hutani Lestari, there are also other
timber concessions and paper and pulp mills supplied by these companies, such
as PT Alas Helau, PT Takengon Paper and Pulp, and PT Kertas Kraft Aceh,
which were – or still are – owned by members of the Soeharto family and their
cronies, which are all threatened by Governor Irwandy’s pledge for a
moratorium on all logging activities in Aceh, regardless of whether they are
illegal or legal. That is probably why PT Tusam Hutani Lestari and PT Kertas
Kraft Aceh, put big advertisements in Serambi Indonesia , Aceh’s biggest daily on
8 February 2007, applauding the inauguration of Irwandy Yusuf as Governor
and Muhammad Nazar as his deputy.
The decreasing extra-budgetary, and basically illegal income of military-
backed, or military-owned companies in Aceh is probably the driving force
behind the increasing paramilitary disturbances in Eastern Aceh, where most of
huge industrial centres area located, especially ExxonMobile’s natural gas fields
and natural gas liquefying plant. Two young men were attacked by a truck full
of men at noon on Monday, 9 April 2007 at the Cunda market in Lhokseumawe
(Waspada, 10 April 2007; Serambi Pase, 10 April 2007).
On Wednesday, 31 January 2007, five members of Forum Komunikasi
Anak Bangsa (FORKAB), a local organization set up by former GAM members in
the Bireuen district were shot at in their car while they were driving along the
road at 22:30 local time. The shots did not kill them, but their attackers still
chased them when they fled into the nearby hills and village, interrogated them
and took their money, before the wounded young men could be taken to the
local hospital. Before this incident, the people of Bireuen were shocked by an
armed robbery at a local gas station, where the robbers – who used army or
police style boots – took Rp 160 million (Modus, 5-11 Febr. 2007: 26).
As was the usual habit of the media during the military occupation of
Aceh, the Medan-based daily Waspada identified the attackers at the Cunda
market in Lhokseumawe as ‚OTK‛ (orang tak dikenal, or ‘unknown persons’), a
category reserved for persons who could neither be identified as members of the
Indonesian armed forces nor members of the Aceh Freedom Movement, or
Aceh pro-democracy activists interpreted these cases as attempts by
factions in the armed forces – be they military and police personnel -- , to revive
their bargaining power in demanding high protection fees from ExxonMobile
and other large corporations on Aceh’s East Coast, such as what happened
before the tsunami and Helsinki agreement. During those turbulent time, the US
oil company had to spent billions of rupiahs to support between 1,340 and 3,000
military and police at 30 spots around their mine and LNG plant. To maintain
these security problems, the military also supported paramilitary groups who
constantly attacked GAM members or villagers accused of being GAM
sympathizers (see Aditjondro 2004: 11-14).
The military links with those militia groups remains a major
concern for observers of Aceh’s peace process. As Felix Heiduk, a German
observer puts it:
‚The extent to which the TNI will support these groups remains unclear,
but looking back at Aceh’s history and the TNI’s links to local militia
groups, the TNI needs (at least theoretically) to be counted among the
potential spoilers of the peace process‛ (2006: 19).
Business groups of former (?) GAM combatants:
SINCE the signing of the peace memorandum between representatives
of the Indonesian state and the Aceh independence movement, former GAM
combatants have been able to consolidate and surface, shifting from guerilla
warfare to economic development, with a strong emphasis on strengthening the
economic ties between Aceh and Malaysia. The most prominent of these
companies, or company groups, is the Pulo Gadeng Group, led by Tengku
Muzakkir Manaf, former commander of TNA (Tentara Neugara Aceh, or Aceh
National Army, GAM’s military wing). Muzakir Manaf currently leads the KPA
(Komite Peralihan Aceh, or Aceh Transitional Committee) (Djalal & Djalal 2006:
132; Intelijen, 30 June-13 July 2006: 7), a body created to facilitate the transition of
former GAM combatants into civilian life in Aceh.
Pulo Gadeng is, according to my sources, not an entirely new group.
During the armed conflict between GAM and the Indonesian armed forces, TNI,
it was run by family members of Muzakir Manaf, and traded in importing used
cars from Singapore and exporting beetle nuts (pinang) to Malaka, Malaysia.
After the Helsinki agreement and Muzakir Manaf surfaced, and took over
publicly the leadership of the group, in the position of Direktur Utama, or CEO.
Under him are other directors, namely H. Tarmizi Yusdja and Zulkifli bin Ubit,
who is also a commissioner of the Group. It began by publicly using the Sabang
free port on the island of Weh, north of the Aceh mainland, as a major entry
point for its trade with Malaysia. It uses KM Pulau Weh, which is owned by the
Sabang municipality, to export coconuts, beetle nuts and cocoa beans from
Sabang and mainland Aceh to Malaysia, and imported used and brand new
luxurious cars from Malaysia to Aceh. In its maiden voyage from Malaysia to
Aceh, the Malaysian ship, Jatra III, shipped luxurious cars, from Toyota Cygnus
to BMW seri 5 with Malaysian plate numbers to be used by GAM officials in
Aceh (Intelijen, 30 June-13 July 2006: 7).
Then, responding to the public statement of Governor Irwandi Yusuf, a
former GAM leader himself, opening up the province to foreign investors,
Muzakir Manaf announced some new ventures that his Pulo Gadeng Group
plans to open, during a press conference in Lhokseumawe on Sunday, 8 April
2007. Among the new ventures announced are a light steel factory in Krueng
Raya in the district of Aceh Besar. This factory is planned to fulfill the needs for
steel structures for 30,000 houses for tsunami victims in Pidie, Aceh Besar, and in
the town of Banda Aceh and its surroundings. Other ventures planned to be built
in the same industrial complex in Krueng Raya are an animal feed mill and a
plastics factory (Serambi Indonesia, 8 Febr., 9-10 April 2007).
Another steel mill which the Group had already built in Arongan
Lambalek, near Meulaboh has already began production and its products, using
the trade mark Ubong Beusoe, have already been used by BRR NAD-Nias since
mid March 2007. Then, in the mountain resort of Takengon in Central Aceh, Pulo
Gadeng will develop horticulture production, to export potatoes and vegetables
to Malaysia, under an MoU recently signed with Malaysian business peoples
To further promote Aceh’s export and import trade, Pulo Gadeng is also
planning to upgrade the facilities of the Malahayati port, which is part of the
Krueng Raya industrial complex, by installing 150 ton cranes at the port, which is
hopefully completed at the end of April 2007. Thereby, construction materials
could also be uploaded and downloaded from ships at that port (idem).
Under Pulo Gadeng’s umbrella are PT Bank Perkeditan Rakyat Syariah
(BPRS) Samudera Niaga; PT Matangkuli Perdana; PT Krueng Kureutou; PT
Pandu Buana Nusantara; CV Aneuk Piranha, and CV Mawar Sejati (Serambi
Indonesia, 8 Febr. 2007, advertisement).
Other companies involving former GAM officials are Aceh World Trade
Centre (AWTC) Dagang Holding, PT Aneuk Nanggroe Expedition Bireuen, PT
Megah Mulia, and PT Halimun Meugah Raya. AWTC is directed by Nurdin
Abdul Rahman, formed head of GAM for Malaysia and Australia. He signed an
MoU with Mohd. Khairuddin bin Othman, General Manager of PPLM
(Perusahaan Pengangkutan Laut Malaysia) in Kuala Lumpur on 15 January 2006, to
promote shipping of passengers and goods from Nottingham port on Penang
Island in Malaysia. Under that agreement, Jatra III is sailing weekly from Penang
to Krueng Geukeuh in Lhokseumawe on Saturdays. Its maiden voyage took
place on Sunday, 29 January 2006, though (Intelijen, 30 June-13 July 2006: 6).
Then, as its name indicates, PT Aneuk Nanggroe Expedition Bireuen,
operates from Bireuen, and is directed by Tengku Yusuf Abdul Wahab. In Pidie,
a former GAM stronghold, PT Meugah Mulia is active in civil engineering
contracts. PT Halimun Meugah Raya is active in the same district, Pidie, and is
owned by former GAM/TNA combatants, and deals in supplying river sand for
civil engineering contracts. Former members of GAM’s female wing, Inong
Bale,which includes female combatants and widows or fallen male combatants,
are also involved in PT Halimin Meugah Raya, which is directed by Said Rizal
Pahlepi, and is based in Meutiara, Beureuneung (Intelijen, 30 June-13 July 2006:
The KPA chief for Pase, Tengku Zulkarnaen, is coordinating the
formation of companies to deal with trading and workshops in the Pase and
Lhokseumawe area, asking former TNA combatants to contribute Rp 12 million
each. Its member companies cover many places in the Pase area, such as the
Matangkuli, Gendong, Pantonlabu, Tanah Jambo Aye and Sawang subdistricts
Individual former GAM leaders are also setting up their own private
companies. Such as, Teungku Nashiruddin bin Ahmed, a former GAM
negotiator at Helsinki, has set up his own building materials company (idem ).
Aceh’s open-door policy towards Malaysian investors:
WHAT we can see from Muzakir Manaf’s business operations is the
strong affinity towards Malaysia. In fact, this seems to be a general pattern
among former GAM commanders, as well as the current Aceh administration.
This month, in April 2007, flights are being opened between Aceh and Malaysia,
and will be flown regularly by Air Asia Kuala Lumpur, Malaysian Air System
(MAS), and Fair Fly. In the mean time, flights from Aceh to Pukhet in Southern
Thailand are also being prepared (Serambi Indonesia, 12 April 2007).
By opening flights, investments are expected. That has already been
pioneered by the North Aceh district government, which has invited Metro
Pajang, a Malaysian company, to develop North Aceh’s oil palm potentials by
building a palm oil factory, utilizing the CPO tank at the Krueng Geukeh port. In
addition, according to North Aceh acting district head (bupati), Teuku Pribadi,
Metro Panjang also plans to develop the district’s fishery potentials (Acehkita, 4-
10 Dec. 2006: 14).
Aceh’s elected leaders orientation towards Malaysia seems to be driven
both by a pragmatic concern to tap into Malaysia’s economic wealth, as well as
the more humanitarian concern for the great number of Acehnese living in
Malaysia, both registered as well as unregistered. As of August 2005, according
to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), there were 20,707
Acehnese ‘persons of concern’ registered in Malaysia, mostly young males. But
according to the Norwegian Refugee Council, by 2004, some 125,000 Acehnese
had become internally displaced persons, mostly fleeing to Malaysia or Thailand
(Djalal& Djalal 2006: 127-8). As Hasyim Djalal and Dina Sari Djalal wrote:
‚The fate of these Acehnese exiles is not clear. Many reportedly returned
to Aceh, with some even selling their businesses in Malaysia in order to
start anew in their homeland. But after months of unemployment and
stagnation in Aceh, just as many have allegedly returned to Malaysia.
This is an unfortunate development for Aceh, which needs the
participation of as many Acehnese as possible for true rehabilitation and
rebuilding, both in the physical and mental sense‛ (2006: 128).
Governor Irwady Yusuf’s open door policy towards Malaysia has been
welcomed by Malaysian palm oil companies, which have formed the Aceh
Plantation Development Authority (APDA) in collaboration with Acehnese
business people. APDA plans to open 145,000 hectares of oil palm plantations in
the province, supported by the Malaysian Islamic Economic Development
Foundation (Yayasan Pembangunan Ekonomi Malaysia). Those plantations are
planned to supply oil palm kernels to thirteen CPO factories, with a total
investment of US$ 488 million (acehkita.com, 13 Febr. 2007).
These plans need to be taken with a lots of grains of salt. Why? Because it
is actually Malaysia, which is benefiting from expanding its oil palm plantations
into Aceh, not the other way around, due to the lack of space for expanding
plantations in Malaysia. At the moment, six Malaysian companies – Kumpulan
Guthrie Bhd, PPB Oil Palms, Kulim, KL Kepong, Golden Hope Plantations, and
Rimbun Sawit Bhd – which control 521,868 hectares of oil palm plantations in
Indonesia, and mainly on the island of Sumatera. That is about 10 % of the total
areal of oil palm plantations in Indonesia, which is 5,597,718 hectares (Investor, 7-
20 Nov. 2006: 16, 28-9).
So, further expansion of oil palm plantations in Aceh, where a dozen of
companies, a.o. PT Woyla Raya Abadi, which is partly owned by former Aceh
Governor, Abdullah Puteh, have already opened about 60,000 hectares of oil
palm plantations (see Aditjondro 2002: 34; van Gelder 2007), will certainly
threaten the ecological balance of Aceh’s forest cover.
It is quite ironic that while declaring a moratorium on all forms of logging,
Irwandy Yusuf has not seriously considered the implications of opening up
Aceh’s forest to Malaysian oil palm plantations. Or, he probably wants his
former colleagues in the guerilla movement to become business players on the
international scene, outbeating Aceh business people such as Ibrahim Hasan and
Ibrahim Risyad, who collaborated with the Soeharto family in destroying the
Aceh forest cover with their oil palm plantations, timber concessions, and paper
and pulp factories.
NOW, let us return to the way some groups have accumulated capital in
a corrupt way. Of those forms of corrupt capital accumulation, the most harmful
form of corruption is the systemic corruption of the Aceh and Nias
reconstruction coordination body, BRR NAD-Nias. As has been discussed
before, this superbody has practically no power to prohibit the use of harmful
substances, such as asbestos, in thousands of resettlement houses in Aceh. In fact,
after issuing Memorandum No. M-010/BRR.08/I/2007, prohibiting the use of
asbestos, Andy Siswanto, a well-known architect, town planner and lecturer at
the Soegyapranata Catholic University in Semarang, was fired from BRR NAD-
Nias. This indicates that as the coordinating body, which also functions as the
regulator for all rehabilitation and reconstruction work in Aceh and Nias, BRR
NAD-Nias is protecting the business interests affiliated to the Coordinating
Minister for Social Welfare, Aburizal Bakrie, and business interests close to
President SBY himself.
This weakness of BRR NAD-Nias is caused by the lack of impartiality of
its head, Kuntoro Mangkusubroto, and several members of its steering
committee and supervisory body. Kuntoro Mangkusubroto is a commissioner of
PT Holcim Indonesia Tbk, while Aburizal Bakrie and Surya Paloh, who both sit
on the body’s steering committee, and TB Silalahi, who sits on the body’s
supervisory body, are linked to the Bakrie Group, the Media Group, and the
Artha Graha Group.
This superbody employs 1,091 persons paid extremely high salaries,
compared to Indonesian civil servants and close to what top executives of private
corporations receive. This fact has been criticized by the national parliament’s
special committee on Aceh, which contrasted the high salaries with the poor
quality of its achievements (Serambi Indonesia, 10 April 2007). The poor quality of
the houses built for tsunami victims under BRR NAD-Nias has led to mass
demonstrations of tsunami victims who were still living in temporary barracks,
who formed an inter-barrack communication forum, or FORAK (Forum
Komunikasi Antar Barak)(Serambi Indonesia, 10 April 2007).
Aceh anti-corruption activists have gone further, by criticizing the
corruption involving BRR NAD-Nias staff. One spectacular example is the
corruption of BRR NAD-Nias’ publication activities and logistical procurement
have been manipulated by its own staff, in cooperation with fictive publishing
companies, and, in cooperation with the owner of the building of an anti-
corruption organization in Jakarta, MTI (Masyarakat Transparansi Indonesia),
whose former executive secretary, Sudirman Said, is an executive at BRR NAD-
Nias (Acehkita, 14-20 August 2006, p. 2; B-watch, October 2006: 32-37; Serambi
Indonesia, 13 April 2007). Other forms of corruption of the reconstruction funds
have also been investigated and exposed by the Aceh Anti-Corruption
Movement, or GeRAK (Gerakan Anti Korupsi) Aceh, ranging from the corruption
of funds to build the tsunami victims houses, to the procurement of luxurious
vehicles for BRR NAD-Nias personnel. Hence, four anti-corruption organizations
in Aceh have persuaded President SBY to replace Kuntoro Mangkusubroto from
his position as BRR NAD-Nias chief (Kompas, 10 January 2007).
Unfortunately, the rehabilitation and reconstruction of Aceh and Nias,
involves trillions of rupiahs, which have in turn benefited many business groups
close to Indonesia’s ruling elite. As often mentioned by the late human rights
activist, H. Pongke Princen, in his mother tongue: ‚De een zijn nood is de andere
zijn brood” (one’s misfortune is another person’s fortune). And in particular,
wherever great sums of money are used to assist displaced persons, whether in
Aceh or elsewhere, such as in Poso, government officials in charge of distributing
relief work and reconstructing the livelihood of disaster victims, have
notoriously manipulated the lion share of the funds to fill their own pockets
through numerous ways.
Reverse flow of reconstruction aid to Aceh:
APART from being corrupted by BRR NAD-Nias personnel, the
Acehnese people have not benefited as much as indicated by the budget figures,
since at least sixty percent of rehabilitation and reconstruction funds allocated for
Aceh has left the province each year. According to Nova Iriansyah from the Aceh
Construction Services Development Institute, or LPJK (Lembaga Pengembangan
Jasa Konstruksi) Aceh, about thirty trillion rupiah is cumulatively allocated from
the national budget, the provincial budget, and from BRR NAD-Nias. Of that
amount, about twelve trillion is allocated for actual reconstruction work. From
that amount, only 4.8 trillion rupiah, or fourty percent, is absorbed by the Aceh
local economy, while 7.2 trillion rupiah, or sixty percent, leaves the province
again. As studied by LPJK Aceh, this reverse flow of reconstruction aid to Aceh
is caused by four factors. Firstly, it are mostly outside contractors that won the
project tenders; secondly, the construction work is often further subcontracted to
firms from outside Aceh; thirdly, most of the project workers come from outside
Aceh; and fourthly, most building material comes from outside Aceh (Serambi
Indonesia, 13 April 2007).
(still needs to be written)
Yogyakarta, 19 April 2007.
Aditjondro, George Junus (2002). Kembar Siam pnguasa politik dan ekonomi
Indonesia: Investigasi korupsi sistemik bagi aktivis dan wartawan. Jakarta & Kendari:
LSPP, PSHK & FORMAS.
--------------- (2004). ‚Reformasi di titik balik? Membongkar upaya-upaya
remiliterisasi di Indonesia.‛ Wacana, Jurnal Ilmu Sosial Transformatif. No. 17/III,
--------------- (2005).‛Menghadapi gelombang tsunami kedua: Studi kasus
rekonstruksi Aceh, pasca-Helsinki.‛ Sociae Polites, Jurnal Ilmiah Ilmu Sosial dan
Politik, No. 23/V, pp. 32-44.
-------------- (2006). Korupsi Kepresidenan: Reproduksi Oligarki Berkaki Tiga, Istana,
Tangsi, dan Partai Penguasa. Yogyakarta: LKiS.
-------------- (2007). Bagaimana mencegah para pebisnis oportunis memancing di air
keruh: Peran negara dan civil society dalam pembangunan perdamaian (peace building)
yang berkelanjutan. Paper for the Workshop to develop a Peace Building Module,
organized by Center for the Study of Religion and Culture (CSRC) Universitas
Islam Negeri (UIN) Syarif Hidayatullah, Jakarta and supported by Catholic
Organization for Relief and Development Cordaid) in Hotel Seruni, Bogor, 14 to
Basuki, Dian R. (peny.) (2005). Bangkit dari puing-puing gempa dan tsunami:
Pemulihan telekomunikasi di Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam. Jakarta: PT Telkom Tbk.
dan Pusat Data & Analisa TEMPO.
BRR NAD-Nias (2006). Membangun Tanah Harapan: Laporan Kegiatan Satu Tahun
Badan Pelaksana Rehabilitasi dan Rekonstruksi Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam dan Nias
April 2006. Banda Aceh: BRR NAD-Nias, pp. 275).
Djalal, Hasjim & Dini Sari Djalal (2006). Seeking lasting peace in Aceh. Jakarta:
Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).
Nasution, Anuar (2005). Surya Paloh, sang pembobol. Jakarta: Penerbit BPK.
Rahmany P., Dyah (2001). Matinya Bantaqiah: Menguak tragedi Beutong Ateuh.
Banda Aceh & Jakarta: Cordova & LSPP.
TNI Watch (1999). Pembantai Pesantren Tgk. Bantaqiah dari Kodim Aceh Tengah.
Name: George Junus Aditjondro
Place & Date of Birth: Pekalongan, Central Java, Indonesia, 27 May 1946.
Current Mail Address: Gang Bakung No. 18, Deresan CT X, Gejayan Street,
Hand (cell) phone nos: (+062) (852) 4121 8490;
(+62) (813) 9254 1118.
Current Location: Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Present Position: Guest Lecturer at Religious and Cultural Studies
of the Post Graduate Programme at the
Sanata Darma University in Yogyakarta,
Consultant and Trainer in Research Methodology
Workshops for non-government organizations in
North Sumatra and the Department of Religion R & D
Institution in South Sulawesi.
20 January 1993: Philosophical Doctor (Ph.D.), Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.;
thesis on public policy education concerning the social and environmental
impact of the Kedungombo multipurpose dam in C. Java.
1991: Master of Science, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.; thesis on organizational
learning of executives and staff persons of the Irian Jaya/Papua Community
Development Foundation (Yayasan Pengembangan Masyarakat Desa Irian Jaya;
Languages: Indonesia (first language)
1. Since Semester I 2007, teaches Marxism and Social Movements at courses
of the Pancasila Study Center of the Gadjah Mada University in
2. August – December 2006, conducted research on the democratic space in
Timor Leste (East Timor) and Indonesia, for the Southeast Asia Committee
for Advocacy (SEACA) in Manila.
3. Since Semester II 2005, involved in teaching Marxism, New Social
Movements, and Research Methodology in the Postgraduate Program of
the Sanata Dharma University in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.
4. Since November 2002: Research & Publication Consultant of Yayasan
Tanah Merdeka in Palu, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia.
5. 1994-2002: Lecturer at the Murdoch University in Perth, Western Australia
(Australia), and the University of Newcastle, NSW, (Australia).
6. 1989-1993: Lecturer at the Postgraduate Program in Development Studies
at the Satya Wacana Christian University in Salatiga, Central Java,
7. 1981-1989: Community development worker with INDHHRA (Sekretariat
Bina Desa) in Jakarta; The Indonesian Environmental Forum (WALHI) in
Jakarta and Jayapura, and Yayasan Pengembangan Masyarakat Desa Irian
Jaya (YPMD-Papua, Irian Jaya) in Jayapura, West Papua.
8. 1971-1979: Journalist with the TEMPO weekly in Jakarta.
Hundreds of books, chapters, introductions, prologues and epilogues on East
Timor, West Papua, Aceh, North Sumatera, Maluku, Sulawesi, Kalimantan;
environmental affairs, especially the environmental impact of mining and huge
infrastructure projects; new social movements; and presidential corruption in
Indonesia since Soeharto, published in Indonesia and overseas.
Most recent book: Korupsi Kepresidenan: Reproduksi Oligarki Berkaki Tiga: Istana,
Tangsi dan Partai Penguasa [Presidential Corruption in Indonesia: Reproduction of
the Three-Legged Oligarchy, the Palace, the Barracks, and the Ruling Party],
Yogyakarta: LKiS, 500 pp, launched on 24 May 2006.