According to local media, Commission IV of Indonesia's House of Representatives and the central Indonesian government agree to temporarily suspend development of the land reclamation project off the coast of North Jakarta as seven violations of Indonesian law occurred during the process. Authorities want to undertake a more thorough study before construction continues. Herman Khaeron, Vice Chairman of Commission IV, claims Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (better known as Ahok) has issued construction permits too soon without having a legal basis. Earlier, a corruption case related to this mega-project had made headlines.
The seven violations that occurred - according to Commission IV - are the following:
(1) The issuance of land reclamation permits without a Zoning Plan for Coastal Areas and Small Islands (RZWP-3-K) and/or Spatial Plan (RTRW) in line with Article 30 of Law No. 1/2014 on Management of Coastal Areas and Small Islands
(2) The issuance of permits without continuous communication with relevant ministries (hence violating Indonesian Law No. 1/2014
(3) Land reclamation permits cannot be issued only based on a Spatial Plan (RTRW) but has to be based on a Zoning Plan for Coastal Areas and Small Islands (RZWP-3-K). However, regarding the RZWP-3-K the local Jakarta administration is yet to issue local regulations
(4) Based on the revocation of Presidential Decree 52/1995 (through Presidential Regulation No. 54/2008), the local Jakarta administration lacks basis to issue reclamation permits
(5) The issued land reclamation permits are not based on a strategic environmental assessment in line with Law No. 32/2009 on the Management and Protection of the Environment
(6) The issuance of reclamation permits by the Jakarta Governor - in conflict with Presidential Regulation No. 26/2008 on the National Spatial Plan that lists Jakarta as a National Strategic Area (Kawasan Strategis Nasional). Only the central government has the authority to manage and utilize these areas
(7) The issuance of reclamation permits were not based on Minister of the Environment Decree No. 14/2013 on the Ineligibility of Reclamation
The ambitious land reclamation project off the coast of Jakarta - involving the development of 17 artificial islands - was initiated by the local Jakarta city administration with the aim to relieve severe population density in the capital city of Jakarta. Outside this land reclamation area a giant sea wall will be constructed that aims to enhance flood prevention. This seawall is part of the government's National Capital Integrated Coastal Development (NCICD) plan, better known as the Great Garuda.
There has been much criticism on the development of the 17 artificial islands as it will mostly offer property for the wealthier people instead of benefiting the wider public. The recent corruption scandal involving Agung Podomoro Land President Director Widjaja and Jakarta provincial assembly legislator Muhammad Sanusi gives rise to the notion that the fruits of this mega-project will mainly be enjoyed by powerful businessmen and politicians.
Local fishermen have also objected to the land reclamation project claiming it will harm their catch. The land reclamation project will force the fishermen to go further out to sea, implying higher transportation costs.