Peasants and Labourers United in Commemorating 2016 National Peasant Day at Central Java

Semarang – Alliance of Prosper and Independent Peasant and Laborer (TABUR MASA), which consisted of KPA Central Java, API Central Java, SPI Central Java, SPPQT, WALHI Central Java, LBH Semarang, JMPPK, AJI Central Java, FPPI Central Java, STN Central Java, Truka Jaya Salatiga, Lesmon Boyolali, KAM Kendal, FPPK Kendal, Akar Rumput Salatiga, and KSPI Central Java, held a rally as commemoration of 2016 National Peasant Day (HTN) at Semarang, Central Java on Tuesday (27/9).

The birth of Basic Agrarian Law (UUPA) No. 5 of 1960 which was born on September 24th 2016, is also commemorated as National Peasant Day is a momentum of agrarian reform movement in Indonesia.

Even though it is identical to peasant day, however UUPA that represents the struggle of agrarian reform movement in this country, is also not only meant as peasant struggle. Peasants’ and agrarian problems are also problems for all sectors. Fishermen, laborers, urban poor and indigenous people are very closely related to the struggle of genuine agrarian reform.

In this moment, rallying mass of Tabur Masa, which is consisted of peasants and laborers, was reminding Jokowi-JK regime to keep their promise to implement genuine agrarian reform.

Purwanto, rally Field Coordinator explained, “genuine agrarian reform is implementing agrarian reform in which peasants, who all these times have been struggling for their rights upon their land through tears and blood, are the beneficiaries. It is not enough implementing it by distributing land or registering land to have certification, moreover it only meant as celebrating big harvest.

Jokowi-JK’s promise to distribute 9 million hectares of land is in fact nonsense. Instead of realizing it, in approaching the end of its second year, agrarian reform is deteriorated in implementation and it is not in accordance with genuine agrarian reform principles, which were mandated by Undang-undang Pokok Agraria (UUPA/Basic Agrarian Law) of 1960.

The condition is worsen by massive practices of criminalization against peasants, who demand for their rights on land, and by the flare of land grabbing caused by wide open investment flow.

Rallying mass of Tabur Masa marched to two points, which were the office of Central Java Governor and the offive of Central Java BPN. They delivered some demands, which were: 1) stop criminalization against peasants; 2) resolve disputes on Java land; 3) refuse environment degrading mining in Central Java; 4) stop food import and take food sovereignty into realization; and 5) establish a committee for agrarian conflicts resolution in Indonesia.

“In West Java, there are a lot of land conflicts untouched by our country’s policies. This time, Alliance of Prosper and Independent Peasants and Labourers (TABUR MASA), which is consisted of peasant unions, laborers union and other sectoral movement elements in Central Java, formed a consolidation in an alliance to have a rally in order to remind stakeholders that there are still a lot of people’s problems in Central Java that need to be resolved,” stated Purwanto.

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