JAKARTA, JARING.id - The city of Bitung is known as the City of Cakalang because of its tantalizing Cakalang tuna catch. Neighboring countries with direct borders such as the Philippines do not remain silent. The waters of Bitung have been targeted by fish thieves by fishermen and Philippine officials.
These various theft modes were tried to be revealed by the Data Kata Investigation Team, KBR, and JARING by collaborating for four months. The coverage was carried out in the city of Bitung to the center of the Philippine fish industry, General Santos.
The Liputan coordinator, M. Kholikul Alim, explained that illegal fishing is carried out in various modes. Some ships only changed their flag to Indonesia, even though the original owners were from the Philippines. Sarangani City Council Alfredo Lora and Sarangani Mayor Virginia T Cawa, two Philippine officials who own the ship. They enter in small vessels under 10 gross tonnage.
By paying Rp. 500 thousand to a village head in North Minahasa Regency, one of the captains of a foreign ship has an electronic KTP issued by the Civil Registry Office of Bitung City, on August 11, 2016 and is valid for life.
As of mid-January 2017, there were 167 foreign nationals who occupied Bitung Marine and Fisheries Resources Supervision detention, one of whom was a Vietnamese citizen, while the rest were Filipino citizens.
According to the Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (KKP) Susi Pudjiastuti, the findings of this investigation do show what is happening in the field. Indonesia is the target of illegal fishing by neighboring countries because of the government's weak attention to marine resources.
"Actually, the original purpose of the moratorium was for evaluation and investigation. After the end of the November 2015 (ex-foreign fishing vessel licensing moratorium), we will know what is really happening in our sea, "said Susi when giving keynote speech in public discussion Taking care of Bitung's fishing paradise at Mid Plaza, Central Jakarta, Tuesday, 9 May 2017.
Susi said that the massive exploitation that has occurred so far has had a critical impact on sea conditions. Even though the sea is included as a renewable natural resource, it must be given time for recovery, including for the fish to breed.
"No exploitative management. But how to keep the fish there and a lot of it can only be done if there is one recovery HR. The restriction we are doing now is aimed at increasing production, ”he said.
Potential for Corruption
Meanwhile, Deputy Chairman of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) Laode M. Syarif stated that the KPK sees the potential for corruption in the fisheries sector. This can be seen from the low state revenue from this sector and is not proportional to the value of the catch and the number of vessels that have received a permit.
Tax revenue from fisheries is still very small, namely 0, 02%. Of the 1,836 companies that own ships, only 1. 204 or 66% have a tax identification number (NPWP). The rest or 34% do not have a NPWP. After that, from the list of companies managing the remaining foreign ships, 53 companies or 28% were identified as not having NPWP. "Judging from this document and the acceptance which is less than one percent, the element of corruption is very large but it is difficult to prove it," he said.
In order to crack down on fisheries corruption, it is necessary to form a task force consisting of the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, the Ministry of Finance, the TNI and Polri and the KPK. Laode also said that entrepreneurs must support the eradication of fisheries corruption by boldly reporting if asked for illegal fees.
Meanwhile, the Chief Editor of KBR Citra Dyah Prastuti hopes that in the future more and more media will collaborate to investigate the misappropriation of the public interest. Investigation coverage of "Philippine Invasion to Fishery Paradise in Bitung" can be seen on the website kadata.co.id, kbr.id and net.id and has been read more than 200,000 times. [Deborah Blandina Sinambela]