Friday, December 31, 2004

SKB 1969 Diskriminatif dan Kontraproduktif


Sinar Harapan, Sabtu, 27 November 2004

Oleh WEINATA SAIRIN


Menteri Agama dan Menteri Dalam Negeri secara bersama menerbitkan Keputusan No. 01/Ber/MDN-MAG/1969 tanggal 13 September 1969 tentang "Pelaksanaan tugas aparatur Pemerintah dalam menjamin ketertiban dan kelancaran pelaksanaan pembangunan dan ibadat agama oleh pemeluk-pemeluknya". SKB ini diterbitkan sesudah terjadi serangkaian kasus perusakan gedung gereja antara lain di Makasar (Oktober 1967), Slipi (April 1969) dan "gagalnya" Musyawarah Antar-Agama 30 November 1967.

Wakil Protestan dan Katolik dianggap telah menyebabkan gagalnya musyawarah tersebut karena mereka menolak suatu rumusan yang telah disiapkan pemerintah di akhir musyawarah dalam bentuk piagam sehingga piagam tersebut tidak jadi dikeluarkan. Dari tiga butir pemikiran yang menjadi isi piagam tersebut, salah satu butirnya ditolak wakil Protestan dan Katolik yang berbunyi: "Saling membantu satu dengan lainnya, moril-spiritual dan materil dan berlomba-lomba untuk meyakinkan golongan atheis untuk berkepercayaan terhadap Tuhan Yang Maha Esa dan tidak menjadikan umat yang telah beragama sebagai sasaran penyebaran agama masing-masing" (cetak tebal dari WS).

Pelarangan penyebaran agama seperti itu bertentangan dengan hakikat agama itu sendiri apalagi agama yang bersifat misioner/dakwah seperti Kristen dan Islam.

Titik lemah

Dalam pelaksanaan di lapangan, ternyata SKB tersebut banyak menimbulkan kesulitan, khususnya yang dialami oleh gereja-gereja di Indonesia. Titik pangkal permasalahan terutama sekali oleh karena isi Pasal 4 SKB tersebut yang tanpa Petunjuk Pelaksanaan yang jelas telah membuka kemungkinan interpretasi yang beragam yang justru makin mempersulit izin pembangunan gereja. Pasal 4 ayat (2) dan (3) menyatakan bahwa Kepala Daerah /pejabat memberikan izin setelah mempertimbangkan pendapat Kepala Perwakilan Departemen Agama setempat, planologi, kondisi dan keadaan setempat bahkan jika dianggap perlu dapat diminta pendapat dari organisasi-organisasi keagamaan dan ulama/rohaniwan setempat.

Dari pengalaman konkret, sulit sekali pejabat memberikan izin oleh karena berbagai hal:

a) Pejabat yang berwenang acapkali tidak mampu memerankan diri sebagai pejabat pemerintah dengan visi kenegaraan yang memadai sehingga bersedia mengayomi warga negara serta membantu perizinan pembangunan rumah ibadah; tapi lebih berfungsi sebagai pejabat yang beragama tertentu dan sebab itu memihak kepada suatu kelompok agama tertentu.

Pejabat yang berwenang acapkali tidak berani/mampu bersikap objektif dan bertindak sebagai pejabat yang arif dalam hal pemberian izin, namun sikapnya amat ditentukan oleh sejumlah tanda tangan dari perorangan/organisasi yang digunakan sebagai syarat untuk memperoleh izin, dan yang sering terjadi adalah masyarakat sekitar menolak pembangunan rumah ibadah (gereja), walaupun mereka tinggal jauh dari tempat pembangunan gedung gereja.

b) Pejabat setempat sering membuat persyaratan lokal (jumlah pemeluk agama, radius dari rumah ibadah agama lain, jumlah rumah ibadah sejenis yang telah ada), yang lebih berat dari isi SKB itu sendiri.
  • Instruksi Gubernur Jabar, No. 28 Tahun 1990 menetapkan antara lain plafon 40 KK untuk bisa memperoleh izin pembangunan.
  • Keputusan Walikota Kodya Palembang No. 11/1990 antara lain mensyaratkan penelitian lapangan bagi pejabat pemda untuk mengecek apakah di lokasi pembangunan ada tempat peribadatan lain, atau tempat peribadatan sejenis, fasilitas hiburan.
Menghadapi berbagai kesulitan yang dijalani gereja-gereja dalam memperoleh izin pembangunan gedung gereja yang diakibatkan oleh SKB tersebut, PGI telah beberapa kali meminta kepada pemerintah agar SKB tersebut dicabut/ditinjau kembali karena SKB tersebut ternyata tidak dapat menjamin kemerdekaan beragama seperti tercantum dalam Pasal 29 UUD 1945 bahkan dapat membahayakan kesatuan dan persatuan bangsa Indonesia (Memorandum DGI/KWI, 10 Oktober 1969, Keputusan-keputusan MPL SR PGI, Surat kepada Presiden Soeharto, 4 April 1996/Habibie, 24 Juni 1998 permintaan kepada berbagai pejabat/lembaga).

Mengingat sulitnya mendapat izin pembangunan gedung gereja, warga gereja menyelenggarakan ibadah di rumah tinggal, di ruko serta di hotel-hotel. Penggunaan rumah tinggal yang difungsikan sebagai gereja oleh beberapa jemaat Kristen, telah memicu ketegangan hubungan antar-umat beragama bahkan dalam suatu kasus pernah menjurus kebentrokan fisik.

Sebab itu Mendagri dalam Surat Kawat No. 264/KWT/DITPUM/DV/1975 menyatakan agar rumah tinggal tidak difungsikan sebagai gereja. Namun oleh karena ada kesalahan interpretasi terhadap isi Surat Kawat itu maka pernyataan itu ditegaskan lagi melalui Surat Kawat No. 933/KWT/SOSPOL/DV/XI/1975 yang menyatakan bahwa "yang berkumpulnya orang Kristen/Katolik dalam satu rumah tinggal sedangkan berkumpulnya orang Kristen/Katolik dalam satu rumah dengan kegiatan kekeluargaan tidak pernah dilarang."

Berkaitan dengan kesulitan pembangunan rumah ibadah PGI berulang kali dalam berbagai kesempatan meminta kepada pemerintah agar kondisi seperi itu tidak terjadi dalam Negara Kesatuan Republik Indonesia yang berdasarkan Pancasila sebagai penegasan Memorandum tanggal 10 Oktober 1969. Adalah hal yang menggembirakan jika para pejabat pemerintah mengungkapkan concern yang serius terhadap pergumulan yang disampaikan oleh PGI. Hal itu tercermin antara lain melalui surat Menteri Menkopolkam No. R34/MENKO/POLKAM/6/1992 tanggal 9 Juni 1992; dan ceramah Menko Polkam Sudomo dalam Sidang MPH PGI tanggal 26 November 1991.

Beberapa titik lemah yang amat signifikan dari SKB Menag-Mendagri 1969 adalah:

a) Ketentuan tersebut tidak memiliki kekuatan hukum karena SKB tidak termasuk dalam Tata Urutan Peraturan Perundangan RI (TAP MPR No. III/MPR/2000).

b) Ketentuan tersebut bertolak belakang bahkan menyeleweng dari Pancasila dan Undang-Undang Dasar 1945 walaupun dalam konsiderans SKB tersebut menyebut Pasal 29 UUD 1945.

c) Penyebaran agama dan pelaksanaan ibadah agama diturunkan/direndahkan derajatnya menjadi kewenangan kepala daerah untuk mengaturnya, membimbing dan mengawasinya sehingga penyebaran tersebut tidak menganggu Ketertiban Umum (Pasal 1,2).

d) Peranan pemerintah/Kepala Perwakilan Departemen Agama amat besar bahkan cenderung dapat mengintervensi khotbah di rumah-rumah ibadah sebagai suatu kegiatan sekuler yang mesti diawasi Pemerintah demi terwujudnya stabilitas keamanan.

e) Pendirian/pebangunan rumah ibadah tidak dipahami sebagai pembangunan sebuah gedung yang tingkat kerawanannya amat tinggi sehingga membutuhkan "rekomendasi" dari berbagai pihak (Pasal 4).

Hal yang amat mendasar di sini adalah munculnya interpretasi seolah pembangunan rumah ibadat itu amat tergantung pada rekomendasi/persetujuan/belas kasihan seorang pejabat atau suatu kelompok golongan tertentu. Arogansi birokrasi dan arogansi mayoritas pemeluk agama bisa terjadi di sini. Kondisi ini bertentangan secara diametral dengan Pancasila dan Undang-Undang Dasar 1945.

Pemerintah menyadari adanya banyak kelemahan dari SKB tersebut, sebab itu pada tahun 1992, Depdagri melakukan penelitian di lima wilayah: DKI Jakarta, Kodya Pontianak, Kodya Palembang, Kodya Surabaya, Provinsi Jabar.

Berdasarkan evaluasi itu, Departemen Dalam Negeri pada tanggal 15 Maret 1993, 23 Maret 1994 mengundang PGI bersama dengan lembaga-lembaga keagamaan lain dalam rangka membahas Rancangan Mendagri tentang Pendirian Rumah Ibadat. Rancangan yang berisi 16 pasal itu ingin mengatur tentang izin pembangunan rumah ibadat sebagai pengganti SKB 1969. Terhadap Rancangan itu PGI memberikan usul perubahan antara lain agar Rancangan itu harus mengacu kepada Pancasila dan Undang-Undang Dasar 1945, agar pemberian keterangan tertulis dari pejabat tidak didasarkan pada jumlah riil penganut agama di suatu wilayah, tetapi pada urgensi karena ada banyak denominasi di sesuatu wilayah dan anggota jemaat tidak hanya berdomisili di sekitar rumah ibadat yang akan dibangun; pelaksanaan ibadah tetap berlangsung sambil menunggu izin keluar; kepala daerah agar meminta pertimbangan organisasi keagamaan dari umat beragama yang sedang membangun rumah ibadah. Hingga saat terakhir Rancangan tersebut tidak terdengar lagi.

Arah ke depan Dalam suasana reformasi yang menuntut perubahan paradigma segala bentuk ketentuan perundangan berbagai aras yang diskriminatif perlu diganti.

SKB Menag-Mendagri 1969 amat merugikan semua agama di Indonesia, terutama sekali gereja-gereja telah mengalami penderitaan yang amat dalam sehubungan dengan SKB tersebut. Secara hukum, konstitusional, material, teologis, SKB itu amat kontraproduktif dan diskriminatif.

Tak ada pilihan lain kecuali pemerintah mencabutnya dan mengupayakan agar ada penyamaan izin pembangunan rumah ibadah dengan izin bangunan-bangunan yang lain. Penyusunan suatu ketentuan baru tentang pembangunan rumah ibadah harus menjadikan hal berikut sebagai referensi utama:

a) Ketentuan tersebut harus berangkat dari kondisi realistik bahwa masyarakat Indonesia adalah masyarakat yang menganut berbagai agama, dana agama-agama itu mempunyai hak serta kewajiban yang sama dalam Negara Kesatuan Republik Indonesia, dan tidak boleh diperlakukan dengan bertolak dari jumlah penganut.

b) Ketentuan tersebut harus mengacu serta mencerminkan jiwa dan semangat Pancasila, Undang-Undang Dasar 1945, GBHN, Wawasan Nusantara yang memberi posisi sentral bagi kehidupan keagamaan masyarakat Indonesia dan yang di dalamnya kemerdekaan tiap penduduk untuk memeluk agamanya dan beribadat menurut agamanya dan kepercayaannya dijamin oleh negara.

c) Ketentuan tersebut harus memberi peluang bagi penambahan sarana-sarana rumah ibadah sebagai bagian padu dari pembinaan mental-spiritual.

d) Ketentuan tersebut memberikan penegasan tentang peranan negara (sesuai dengan Pasal 29 ayat 2 UUD 1945) sehingga pembangunan rumah ibadah tidak seakan-akan tergantung dan atau merupakan belas kasihan dari seorang pejabat atau suatu kelompok/golongan tertentu di dalam masyarakat.

d) Ketentuan tersebut tidak boleh membatasi/menghalangi hak setiap makhluk untuk mengekspresikan keberagamaannya kepada Sang Khalik. Artinya jika oleh karena satu dan hal, rumah-rumah ibadah belum dapat dibangun, maka hak umat beragama untuk mengungkapkan keberagamaannya kepada Allah Yang Esa itu tetap dijamin, walaupun untuk sementara tidak dilaksanakan di dalam ruang gereja/ ruang ibadah yang khusus.

Presiden Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono dan Wapres M. Jusuf Kalla bersama Kabinet Indonesia Bersatu mesti memberi perhatian serius terhadap realitas ini!

Penulis adalah teolog, pengamat masalah sosial keagamaan.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Earthquake in the Indian Ocean



The US Geological Survey recorded an earthquake at a magnitude of 9.0 Richter scale on Dec. 26, 2004 in the Indian Ocean.

The temblor began on Sunday at 7:58 a.m. Its epicenter is around 255 km southeast of Banda Aceh. It is the fourth largest earthquake in the world since 1900 and is the largest since the 1964 Prince William Sound, Alaska earthquake.

But the subsequent tsunami, which began between 15 and 30 minutes after the temblor, depending on the distance between each village to the epicenter, caused more casualties than any other disaster in recorded history. It drastically changed the Acehnese cause.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Dinner with lecturers from New York

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Having dinner in a Minahasan restaurant in Jakarta with Michael Cowan (left in blue shirt) and Mila Rosenthal (far right with green shirt) of Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, New York. They came to Jakarta in December 2004 to conduct training with Pantau. Michael taught TV production. Mila taught labor coverage. My Pantau colleagues were (from left to right): Paul Dillon (writing for The Globe and Mail), Indarwati Aminuddin, Anugerah Perkasa, Esti Wahyuni, Dame Ambarita (working for a chain newspaper in northern Sumatra). We had great sessions! We were all exhausted but enjoyed the Minahasan cuisine so much.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Wheel Street's Public Forum

By Andreas Harsono


MANADO, Indonesia, Dec 11 (IPS) -- Lalampa is a delicious rice cake made of glutinous rice. The steamed rice is rounded around a piece of fish meat, wrapped up with banana leaves and barbequed in charcoal heat. It is finger-sized, rather oily and tasty, but also a little bit sweet.

Lalampa is usually consumed while one has tea or coffee. It is popular throughout Minahasa, a region in northern Sulawesi, which is a predominantly Christian area in Indonesia, the world's largest Muslim country.

In North Sulawesi, some of the best lalampa sellers can be found in Manado city's Jalan Roda -- a crowded downtown alley -- where more than a dozen ‘warungs' or food stalls cater to office workers, middlemen, students and activists.

Yuni Husain, a bank clerk, said that she likes to drop in Jalan Roda in her after-office hours. ‘'Everybody is equal here and the ambiance is comfortable,'' she told IPS.

‘'The prices are fair; the crowd practically knows one another. People also call it the third-level DPRD,'' said Muin Sumaila, a high school teacher, referring to Indonesia's two-pronged local parliaments, namely the Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat Daerah or the House of Regional Representatives, known by its acronym DPRD. The provincial parliament is called DPRD Level I and the city council is DPRD Level II.

Indeed, Indonesia has no DPRD Level III, but Sumaila's joke has a ring of truth in it.

Many government officials and other public figures have to visit Jalan Roda to meet its customers. Politicians, artists, public intellectuals -- including the internationally recognised Muslim scholar Nurcholish Madjid -- also visited this alley to test their ideas. Their talks are mostly about self-governance and public welfare.

In mid-2000, Aif Darea, a journalist-cum-activist made a breakthrough in Jalan Roda. Darea was then working for ‘Radio Al Khairat' FM 102 MHz, the largest Muslim-based radio station in Manado.

He decided to launch a weekly political talk show in Jalan Roda. Every Monday from 7 am till 10:30 am, he broadcasted live from a small table in the Warung Pak Hari stall. That was his talk show platform, transmitting lively political conversations from Jalan Roda.

‘'I also added a speaker so that the programme could be heard outside the ‘warung'. People were very proud if they could talk on radio,'' Darea said, adding that he usually invited one or two commentators and four other sources to talk in his show. On-lookers and other ‘warung' patrons would sometimes also join in.

Warung Pak Hari is one of the Jalan Roda ‘warungs' that sells the delicious ‘lalampa'. It is always crowded in the mornings and evenings. Next to Warung Pak Hari is a billiards place. Some other ‘warungs' also provide space for their customers to play cards. There is also a brothel whose small entrance is located next to Warung Pak Hari.

‘'I have known Warung Pak Hari since I was a kid selling newspapers or scavenging around for plastic bags. I sometimes slept in this ‘warung' and called the couple that owned it Papa and Mama,'' Aif Darea said.

Jalan Roda customers are mostly Muslims. Sumaila is a Muslim from Tidore Island. Yuni Husain's father is an Acehnese while her mother is a Javanese.

Most customers come from Gorontalo, a predominantly Muslim region south of Minahasa, or Bolaang Mongondow, a Muslim enclave inside southern Minahasa.

This religious affinity in Jalan Roda started since it was established in the 1930s when cattle traders from Gorontalo parked their bullock- carts in the neigbourhood while selling their cattle in a nearby market. Roda literary means ‘'wheel'' in Indonesian Malay.

The Jalan Roda visitors also share a general feeling that they are a minority inside a Christian enclave, although Minahasa itself is located inside a huge Muslim country.

Many of the Jalan Roda visitors are also critical toward the social structures in Minahasa. Most Gorontalons are traders or street vendors. The Minahasans control the bureaucracy, the academic circles and the military while the Sangihes, who are mostly Christians, become shop keepers or restaurant waiters.

‘'The Gorontalons also want to climb the social ladders. There is a feeling of being marginalised. There is the hegemony of the Minahasans,'' said Suardi Hamzah, a Gorontalon activist, who is a regular customer in Jalan Roda.

Friko S. Poli, an editor of the Komentar daily, a newly-established newspaper whose founding editors were mostly Minahasans, denied such an allegation, saying that one might see it as a discrimination but such a view ‘'underestimates those professions (street vendors).''

Poli believes that the Manado government has to enforce the law, including sometimes eradicating street vendors, but strictly on a legal basis. The street vendors, he stressed, were not removed because of their ethnic or religious backgrounds.

The Minahasans themselves always feel that they are a tiny minority whose total population is less than one percent of the whole population in Indonesia. Between 1957 and 1962, the Minahasans were involved in an armed rebellion against Jakarta but they lost and more than 3,000 of their people were killed.

In 1999 when Christian-Muslim violence broke out in the Maluku Islands, killing nearly 10,000 people, many Minahasans established militia groups. Their leaders did not have confidence that Jakarta could contain the violence from engulfing Minahasa.

The largest group is Brigade Manguni, whose members in black uniforms are frequently seen on the streets of Manado. Their presence, although not directed toward the Muslim minority, created quite a stir among the Muslims.

Suardi Hamzah helped his fellow Gorontalons forward their demands to the Jakarta government, in 2002, indicating their desire to breakaway from North Sulawesi in the form of a separate administrative region.

They succeded in their campaign. Gorontalons today have their own province, separate from Minahasa. But activists like Hamzah became frustrated when the new DPRD Gorontalo elected a notorious businessman to become its first governor.

‘'I'm not returning to Gorontalo as long as Fadel Muhammad is still governor,'' said Hamzah.

Reiner Ointoe, a lecturer at Manado's Sam Ratulangie University, himself a regular Jalan Roda visitor, believes that the street is a public forum in which outrage and criticism could be channeled.

This forum, he said, does help to maintain civil liberties in Manado.

(END/IPS/AP/CR/AE/IP/DV/AH/SI/04)
[c] 1998, InterPress Third World News Agency (IPS)

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Miangas, nationalism and isolation


How do the islanders of Miangas view nationalism in the Indonesia-Philippines border island?


If you want to find an island in this globally-wired world where there is no telephone line nor cell phone signal, where you can isolate yourself, sometimes for three consecutive months, with electricity between 6pm and 2am only, yet with a clean neighborhood, zero crime rate, running water, fresh air and indeed, gorgeous beaches, I advise you to visit Miangas Island, a small Indonesian isle, near Cape San Agustin in the southern Philippines.

One week prior to Indonesia’s first direct presidential election in September 2004, I took a two-night trip to Miangas from Manado in northern Sulawesi, on board the KM Ratu Maria motorboat. A government office chartered her to deliver election ballot papers to Miangas. I paid my ticket and boarded the boat. Usually passengers have to jump from island to island for about one week, to travel from Manado to Miangas, or else to wait for the KM Daraki Nusa, a state-subsidized ship, which heads for Miangas every 10 days from Bitung, a harbor near Manado. My trip was pleasant, with good seafood and calm seas, though I had to kill dozens of little cockroaches that inhabited my cabin. We also stopped in five harbors, which include Lirung, Melonguane, Beo, Essang and Karatung, which are parts of the Talaud-language area.

Only when I reached Miangas, my gaze was rewarded with deep blue sea, white sand, tiny boats, a white church and a mountainous area. It also has a small kampung, on whose roads the islanders dry their fishnets, paddles and wooden boats, locally called prau.

Miangas has no hotel. Donald Rumokoy, the head of the election committee in Manado, who chartered the boat, introduced me to the Miangas opo laut or village head, Djonyor Namare, a dark-skinned, middle-aged fisherman, who invited me to use his bedroom while he and his spouse, Lukring Binulang, resorted to a wooden bed on their outdoor terrace. The islanders commonly have these wooden beds to avail of the wind in an island whose temperature is usually between 24 to 30 degrees Celsius.

Binulang is a big-boned cheerful woman. She served my dinner with fried tuna flavored with the super hot rica-rica chili. I loved it and sweated like hell. “How many chilis did you use?” I once asked her. She responded by showing me a basketful. I guessed it had more than 20!

Indeed, my purpose to be in Miangas was not to swim nor to test my tastebuds. I went there especially to observe how the islanders view nationalism in this Indonesia-Philippines border island. How do they view their relations with both the Philippines and Indonesia? How do they deal with their legal status, as either a Netherlands Indies or an Indonesian subject, while toying with their physical and psychological proximity to the Philippines? What kind of counter strategies do they use toward the bigger interests in Manado and Jakarta? How do they use the issues of nationalism to advocate their own interest?

Namare briefed me on basic facts. Miangas is Indonesia’s northernmost island. It has a population of only 673. They are almost all Miangas-born but a few settlers that included five Muslims: a Javanese couple, whose husband is a navy official, their son and two other officials, dispatched by Jakarta to work in Miangas. The others are all Protestants. “You could walk the whole island in two hours,” said Namare.

Miangas stretches 2.5 kilometers long and to nearly 1.6 kilometers wide. Geographical location: north latitude 5 degrees, 33.2 minutes; east longitude 126 degree, 35.2 minutes. “When I was younger, I spent like four or five hours by a prau to reach the Philippines,” said village elder Petrus Essing, whose house is a stone’s throw away from the Namares. It took a motorboat like KM Ratu Maria or KM Daraki Nusa between seven and eight hours to reach Karatung, the nearest Talaud island to Miangas.

The Talaud name of the island (Miangas or Meangas) means, “exposed to piracy,” referring to past attacks in Miangas from Sulu slave traders and buccaneers in Mindanao. The Spaniards, presumably the first Europeans to encounter this island, called it “Isla de las Palmas,” the island of the palm trees.

Does it really have palm trees? Well, on my first day in Miangas, Lukas Bawala, a novice Protestant priest and a distant relative to Namare, took me on a jungle tour around Mt. Batu. He brought along a peda, a short curved sword, to cut tall, coarse grass. We visited the old fortress at the top of Mt. Batu and saw only two palm trees left on the island. “It was a long time ago when palm trees were gradually replaced by coconut trees. Copra is our main agricultural product,” said Bawala.

The jungle tour reminded me of Herman Johannes Lam, a botanist at the Herbarium and Museum for Systematical Botany at Buitenzorg, then a Dutch colonial institution in Java, who visited Miangas in June 1926. Dr. Lam and his team surveyed plants and animals for two days, writing that the original Miangas flora had completely vanished. He also wrote that 1895 was a very important year for Miangas because it marked the arrival of the then-Dutch resident of Manado, E.J. Jellesma.

Jellesma visited Miangas because he had been informed the then-Miangas opo laut had refused to accept a flag from a Spanish vessel, arguing that he was convinced to be subject to the Netherlands Indies government “from generation to generation.” Jellesma was accompanied by a Dutch clergyman, who baptized 254 Miangas people to the Protestant religion. Those visits, which obviously satisfied Jellesma, prompted his Manado administration to pour more help into the tiny island.

Three years’ after Jellesma’s visit, in December 1898, however, a treaty was signed in Paris between the United States and Spain that had an effect on the legal status of Miangas. The Americans emerged from the war with new international power. The treaty, however, erroneously included the “Isla de la Palmas” into the territory of the Philippines, which was a part of the Spanish colonies taken over by the Americans. But who cared about the tiny dot? The Americans did not notice the error and the Netherlands Indies kept their works in Miangas as if nothing happened. Only in 1906, or eight years after the treaty, an American general, Leonard Wood, visited Miangas and discovered that the Netherlands Indies also claimed sovereignty over the island.

Both the US and the Netherlands agreed to enter into arbitration before the Court of International Justice at The Hague in 1925. The Swiss jurist, Hans Max Huber, was selected as an arbitrator. After almost three years of work, Huber finally declared in April 1928 that the island was legally a Dutch territory.

That new legal status, however, did not change the fact that the Miangas islanders still communicated extensively with people from their neighboring islands: Mindanao and the Talaud islands or further south in the Sangihe islands. Namare’s father went to school in Davao, a major city in Mindanao, but also has brothers living in Sulawesi. Petrus Essing has two sisters who are married to Filipinos. Many Miangas islanders speak both Visayas and Tagalog, two languages that are widely used in the southern Philippines, but many also converse in Malay with the Manado dialect. “Those who are over 60 years old speak the Filipino languages,” said Namare.

Miangas’ legal status changed again 21 years later, at the end of World War II, when two new republics emerged from both colonies: Republic of Indonesia (1949) and Republic of the Philippines (1946). The new republics signed four border agreements between 1956 and 1974. They opted to issue locals “border-crossing passes,” less complicated than passports, and to set up border-crossing offices in three islands: Miangas and Marore on the Indonesia side, as well as Saranggani on the Filipino side. The Philippines, however, claims the seas surrounding Miangas to be its territory.

Jakarta tried ceaselessly to mark its sovereignty in Miangas. “Once my boss saw the name plate ‘Palmas’ printed in our office and asked me to immediately remove the Spanish word,” said Lt. Hengky Vantriardo, a young Indonesian Army officer who was stationed in Miangas for four months in early 2004. I also saw a small monument signed by General L.B. Moerdani, the then-Indonesian Armed Forces commander, who visited the island in August 1986. “One month prior to his arrival, 12 intelligence officers arrived here. Another group came to build a helipad,” said Namare. The Indonesian Navy also keeps a presence in Miangas. They set up a monitoring post near Miangas’ elementary school building. It also deploys 160 navy personnel to patrol the border near Miangas and Marore with three cruisers and two planes.

More importantly, the Jakarta and Manado government pour money into Miangas, such as subsidizing rice and funding boats like the KM Daraki Nusa to extend their route in order to reach Miangas. However, Davao always provides cheaper Pop Cola or San Miguel beer. Manado sponsored scores of Miangas families to migrate to Bolaang Mongondow or Minahasa in northern Sulawesi, in the 1960s and 1970s, in a bid to reduce the Miangas population density, but many Miangas women and men choose to naturally settle in Mindanao areas.

Just listen to Ennos Nangori, a Miangas sailor: “I began to work in the Philippines in 1992 on a fishing ship named Dolly 15. It was a Filipino ship, fishing mostly in Indonesian waters. I got the job because I speak Cebuano.” Nangori regularly traveled to General Santos, Davao, Zamboanga and other Philippines cities. “Once I lived for a month in Cebu,” he said, referring to the Philippines’ second largest city after Manila.

I also happened to meet some Filipinos who were visiting the office of Carlito Niebres, the Philippines border-crossing officer, who works alone in his Miangas office. His “small Philippines embassy” is a two-story wooden house located inside the kampung. When I came into the house, Niebres was chatting with his guests on his terrace clad in shorts and a sleeveless shirt that failed to hide his armpit hair!

That morning his guests included Alfredo Papea Pagtun, a 38-year-old pastor in Saranggani, who visited Miangas to meet his relatives. “My late mother is a Miangas [woman] but father is a Filipino of Belaan tribe,” Pagtun said. He first visited Miangas in 1978 when he was only 11 years old. “Then houses were very small, no roads, no electricity. Now it has improved a lot,” said Pagtun.

The younger Pagtun, Adelito, cannot hide his delight in Miangas. I often saw Adelito walking along the streets or drinking Pop Cola with his three distant sisters and four cousins. “I’m so happy here,” he said. According to Namare and Niebres, there is always a group like the Pagtuns visiting Miangas every week. The next morning, while swimming, I saw the Pagtuns prepared to return to Saranggani in a small wooden motorboat that takes about eight hours to reach Saranggani Island. I loved to see their relatives give them hugs and help them to board the boat, anchored some 200 meters off the beach.

Indonesia spends so much money on Miangas but the fact is it is geographically, and partly culturally, closer to the Philippines. Donald Rumokoy told me he spent Rp25 million (around US$2,300) just to charter the KM Ratu Maria to deliver the ballot papers to Miangas when it only has 450 voters. “It is expensive, isn’t it? I sometimes jokingly tell my colleagues that it might be better if Indonesia sells Miangas to the Philippines.”

Expensive or not, cultural or geographical, I felt like in paradise staying in Miangas, spending my time with swimming between interviews, and throughout my stay the islanders took great pride in entertaining me—always grilled fish and the rica-rica eaten with laluga, a sort of big aracea planted in the freshwater swamps (a spineless form of Cyrtosperma Merkusii). The lunch or dinner conversations always started with stories about their relatives, both in Indonesia or the Philippines, who moved their “loyalty” toward Indonesia, and concluded with asking me to help them with my stories.

Elementary school teacher Agus Tege said his school needs a computer, a printer and new batteries for their single sideband radio (donated by an army officer in Manado). Djonyor Namare said his village needs cold storage, “We could keep our fish fresh while awaiting the Filipino ships to come and buy the fish.” Some young mothers complained about the quality of their high school whose teachers are regularly absent from teaching. Lukas Bawala complained about “drunken teachers” in the elementary school. The islanders also love to pepper their conversations with reminders that Miangas is a border island, stating the importance of their geographic location for the “national unity of Indonesia.”

I tried to check their complaints. Royke Rarumangkay, a Manado correspondent of the Jakarta-based Trans TV, who visited Miangas for a few hours in mid-June 2002, told me that Miangas relatively has good infrastructure. “We initially thought that it must be underdeveloped but it turned out to be quite urban. The concrete road, the church and the pier, show that they are pretty OK, but not the transportation and communication problem.”

Hengky Vantriardo, the Indonesian Army lieutenant, told me that he believes the Miangas people use the border issue as bait to receive more subsidies from Manado and Jakarta. “It is a mentality,” Hengky said, adding that those demands are akin to those made by the East Timorese during the Indonesian occupation period. “The East Timorese asked a lot, but when it comes to loyalty, they prefer to break away from Indonesia,” he said.

Will Miangas do the same?

A good explanation came from Joppy Luppa, the harbormaster of Miangas, a quiet and muscled man in his 50s, who first invited me to come to his house for dinner (I declined unless I wanted to have three dinners in a single evening). “If the Republic of Indonesia is peaceful, we are loyal to Indonesia. But if Indonesia is not at peace, well, we’re closer to the Philippines, you know, we could head for the Philippines in the morning and back in the evening, just three or four hours sailing with prau,” said Luppa.

“What does peaceful mean?” I asked him.

“Well, you see so many riots, in the Moluccas, in Aceh and many other places. People kill one another, in the name of Islam or Christianity, in the name of ethnicity or in other names.”

“But Miangas is an Indonesian territory?”

“It’s true and I don’t mean that Miangas belongs to another country. Before 1965, the Indonesian language was not widely used here. We used Visayas, many Miangas people also married Filipinos, but after 1972, contact with the Philippines grew less and less. By 1975, there was already a kapal perintis (subsidized ship) to connect Miangas and Manado, and relations with the Philippines were reduced. There was also the Moro war in Mindanao. We do not want to go there. We’re scared.”

I left Luppa’s house that evening, walking in the dark night, with many thoughts. A struggling state like Indonesia, or to be fair, also the Philippines, both of whose weaknesses allowed terrorism, corruption and civil conflict to take roots in alarming ways, would encourage people from small and isolated islands like Miangas to switch side periodically. It does not mean that they are not trustworthy, but their existence is heavily dependant on subsidies from the big brothers. Miangas is a nation but a small one.

They switched side when they felt that the Spaniards, who used to be the world’s largest empire in the 18th century, were losing ground against the US in the late 1890s. They thought that the Netherlands Indies was a stronger brother. Consequently, they welcomed Jellesma in Miangas. But they developed closer relations with the Philippines after WW II because it provided cheaper goods, better education and friendly environment than the fledgling Republic of Indonesia, which was involved in several civil wars: Java, Sumatra, Sulawesi, Kalimantan, Papua etc. During the rule of Indonesian dictator Suharto, which produced relative stability and prosperity in Indonesia, the Miangas people also showed more affection toward Jakarta. They praised Benny Moerdani when he arrived in the island. They worried again when ethnic and religious riots broke out in many places after the fall of Suharto in May 1998. Maybe that is the fate of a small nation. They have pride but not enough political and military muscles.

The KM Daraki Nusa arrived in Miangas on September 18 at 10am, stopping for about three hours to let the Miangas islanders unload iron rods, cement, rice, flour, nails and suchlike as well as to sell their copra.

Almost all of the islanders flocked to the pier, picking up their deliveries, meeting incoming relatives or just looking around inside the ship. Children toured the KM Daraki Nusa, buying candies or just looking around the cabins.

I said goodbye to the Namares, navy officer Lt. Riko Hartono and others when some of the boys asked me to dive into the crystal-clear blue sea. “I am already wearing my trousers, glasses, and look at my wallet,” I answered.

“Come on Oom, come on Oom,” they said, somersaulting in the air. “Oom” is the Dutch word for “uncle.”

Uh oh, this uncle could not stand the urge to make his final dive. I took off my shirt and dived in, swimming until the ship’s engineer, Dwi Setyono, gave me a sign to board the KM Daraki Nusa.


Andreas Harsono, a Jakarta-based journalist and head of the Pantau group, a community of freelance writers and photographers

Tempo, No. 13/V/November 30 - December 06, 2004
AsiaViews, Edition: 47/I/December/2004

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Indonesian Chinese Fears Economic Discrimination

by Andreas Harsono
American Reporter Correspondent
Jakarta, Indonesia

JAKARTA, Nov. 10, 2004 -- Many Chinese-descent Indonesians are worried about the new Indonesian government's economic policy, fearing they may become victims of discrimination advocated by Vice President Jusuf Kalla.

Kalla has argued in some media interviews that the new government would like to help "the small and medium enterprises" but said that "90 to 95 percents of the small businessmen are pribumis."

"Pribumi" is a Bahasa Indonesia word which literary means "native." It is relatively a new word in the new language to define the different ethnic groups in Indonesia but to exclude the Chinese, Indians, Caucasians and Arab minorities. The Chinese is the largest group among those categories.

Kalla said the Chinese business community, which dominates retail business and controls major conglomerations, should help the government implement the new economic policy. "If Malaysia implements race, we should implement group (policy)," he was quoted as saying by the Jakarta-based Sinar Harapan daily.

Kalla himself is a successful businessman. He is the major shareholder and former chairman of the Kalla Group, based in Makassar in southern Sulawesi, a region is dominated by ethnic Bugis.

He was heavily involved in former President Suharto's Golkar Party during Suharto's authoritarian rule and once was fired on corruption charges as a trade minister when serving President Abdurrahman Wahid. But Kalla was never investigated and many believed the allegation was weak.

He walked away from Golkar Pary earlier this year to join presidential candidate Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. The pair won a landslide election last month and were inaugurated as president and vice president on Oct. 20. It was the first direct presidential and vice presidential election held in Indonesia's modern history.

Some leading Chinese figures, however, have expressed concern over Kalla's racist remarks. A meeting was also held with Wahid, himself a leading Muslim scholar and advocate of minorities rights, the day before their inauguration.

Frans Hendra Winata, a human rights lawyer and a founder of the Indonesian Institute on Anti Discrimination, told Wahid that many Chinese businessmen are small and medium-scale traders, and that Kalla's rhetoric would create more problems in Indonesia instead of narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor. They asked Wahid to pay attention to Kalla's racist views.

Wahid agreed with his guests. "His statement is emotional and illogical. I am prepared to die to fight against it," he told the media.

The Internet news site Detikcom quoted Wahid as saying, "All citizens should adhere to our Constitution and that kind of statement is not proper to be said by someone like Jusuf Kalla." Wahid, however, called on the Chinese to "calm down," saying that the statement is a political matter which does not involve powerful institutions. He also called on President Yudhoyono to control Kalla.

Indonesia is a culturally diverse country. Modern Chinese settlers began settling in Java, a major island in this southeast Asian country in the 15th century. Kalla's statement is ironic considering that various ethnic violence that has taken place in Indonesia over the last seven years. Much of the violence took place because some local groups oppose the settlement of migrants from different ethic groups from other parts of Indonesia.

The Acehnese drove away thousands of Javanese migrants from the northern tip of Sumatera Island over the last five years. The Dayak killed more than 2,000 Madurese migrants on Kalimantan Island in a bloody headhunting rampage three years ago. The Papuans and the Molluccans are against the Bugis traders settling in Papua and the Molluccas. Many other "natives" in many parts of Indonesia also demand that governors, regents, district chiefs, and even deans in local colleges should be "putra daerah," which literally means "local sons," in order to stop settlers from becoming involved in governance or academia. It is not clear whether Jusuf Kalla understands the consequences of his racist remarks directed toward his own Bugis countrymen.

Scholars write that Indonesia is basically an artificial nation lacking firm historical roots. It comprises 13,677 islands, stretching over a distance from east to west that is approximately the same as from London to Moscow. It is the world's largest Muslim country but has a significant Christian majority in the east. Its 220 million people speak more than 300 different languages and their common history includes a Dutch colonial past and a lingua franca developed from the Malay language.

Ivan Wibowo, another Chinese lawyer, wrote in The Jakarta Post that Kalla's anti-Chinese observations could be seen in his official Website, www.jusufkalla.com, in which Kalla advocates an economic policy mirrored on Malaysia's "affirmative action" for the "bumiputera," which has prevailed there since the 1970s. "Bumiputera" is the Malaysian equivalent of the word "pribumi."

Kalla also advocated the reintroduction of the Assaat Movement set up by Assaat, an Indonesian businessman, once the acting president of Republic Indonesia in 1950. Assaat accused the Chinese of being "opportunists" in a public speech in 1956, calling on the government to enact an affirmative action for the pribumis.

His speech prompted a nationwide campaign and produced a 1959 government regulation which barred Indonesians of Chinese descent from owning a business beyond the local level. The Indonesian military vehemently supported the regulation, resulting in 130,000 Chinese-Indonesians leaving this country. But it created ecomnomic chaos by disrupting the chain of distribution because many Chinese traders were involved in retail businesses.

Australian scholar Herbert Feith, in his classic, "The Decline of Constitutional Democracy in Indonesia" (Cornell University Press, 1962), called the Assaat Movement "racist" and described how the Chinese issue was used to whip up nationalist sentiment among ethnic groups.

According to Wibowo, Kalla argued on his Website that Assaat's policy would provide an opportunity for the pribumi to handle distribution. Kalla said the objective of this affirmative action is "to limit the expansion and existence of non pribumi ... 75 percent of the distribution of staple commodities should be in the hands of pribumi."

But anti-Chinese riots break out regularly in Indonesia, as does other ethnic violence. A much stronger anti-Chinese fever took root in 1965 when the military, led by General Suharto, took over power from founding President Sukarno, who had built a close alliance with the Communist bloc, including Beijing. Chinese-language schools were closed down. Chinese-language characters were banned. Many Chinese temples were closed.

That era peaked in May 1998, when Suharto was forced to give up power. However, more than 2,500 people, mostly looters who died in burning buildings in Jakarta, were killed in a huge anti-Chinese riot aimed at Chinese-owned properties.

The Kalla website, however, was updated with another Website's profile of Jusuf Kalla last week. No explanation was offered for the change.

But not every Chinese leader agrees that Kalla is a racist. Sofyan Wanandi, the chairman of the Gemala group and an advisor to the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce, told Radio Australia, "... what everybody is talking about Jusuf Kalla, according to me is not true. You know he's a businessman. Sometimes he is too direct, but cannot explain that in the right way and that creates a misjudgement also from the Chinese community. I don't believe there will be a policy from the government to discriminate and have a racial policy specially against the Chinese. I don't believe that."

For now, it's a wait-and-see situation. Yudhoyono and Kalla have selected a variety of economic ministers, who include Aburizal Bakrie, a former chairman of the Chamber of Commerce, and Mari E. Pangestu, a economist of Chionese descent who is active in a Jakarta think tank, where Wanandi is a scholar, as well as other economists.

AR Correspondent Andreas Harsono has written for us since 1995 and won the Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University in 1999 and other international journalism awards. He is currently writing his first book, on ethnic and religious conflicts in Indonesia. He is a third-generation Indonesian Chinese.

Monday, November 08, 2004

Mulai Bangun Blog


SENIN ini, ketika gua lagi riset komentar Benedict Anderson, bahwa krisis 1997-1998 bukan cuma krisis ekonomi, tapi juga krisis nasionalisme, gua iseng-iseng baca blog Alfred Ticoalu, satu orang Minahasa tinggal di Chicago.

Gua jadi pengin punya blog juga.

Tadi pagi juga pigi pasar, beli lengkuas, cao, pacar cina, pete, kangkung, asem jawa, kecambah dan banyak lain. Helen mau masak Selasa sore untuk traktir Adam Ellick yang mau datang maen. Gua juga lagi stres berat banyak deadline: bab Sulawesi, paper untuk Colombo sama laporan Inter Press Service.

Ini belon lagi urusan workshop dengan Anya Schiffrin, Mila Rosenthal dan Michael Cowan bulan depan.

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Wawancara, Wartawan, dan Ratu Kecantikan


Bagaimana wawancara dengan pikiran terbuka?

Oleh Andreas Harsono dan Esti Wahyuni*


JAKARTA -- Kalau Anda mengenal David Candow, seorang pelatih wartawan dari Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Anda akan tahu bahwa seorang wartawan yang baik, kalau melakukan wawancara, bekerja dengan mewakili rasa ingin tahu audiens. Ia harus sopan. Ia harus siap dengan pemahaman bahan. Ia harus menggali informasi sebanyak mungkin. Ia tak bernada menghakimi. Ia tak menunjukkan kesan sudah tahu. Bukan sok pamer. Bukan sok pintar.

Ini penting karena wawancara adalah bagian penting dari reportase. Dan reportase adalah bagian penting dari jurnalisme. Wawancara yang baik akan menghasilkan banyak informasi. Wawancara yang buruk akan menghasilkan banyak bantahan.

Sumber yang menerima pertanyaan-pertanyaan yang buruk akan memakai waktu wawancara untuk memahami pikiran si wartawan, dan tak jarang, membantah asumsi-asumsi si wartawan. Atau lebih jelek lagi, meninggalkan si wartawan, tak menanggapi isi wawancara.

Anda boleh bertanya pada Candow, "Berapa jumlah kata ideal untuk sebuah pertanyaan?"

Candow biasanya menjawab, "Satu kata saja. Dan kata itu adalah mengapa?"

Namun, tentu saja, tak setiap pertanyaan bisa disarikan jadi satu kata. Prinsipnya, makin panjang suatu kalimat tanya, makin menurun kemampuan si sumber mencerna pertanyaan itu. Sebaliknya, makin pendek pertanyaan, makin mudah si sumber memahami si wartawan. Candow memberikan pedoman 16 kata.

Lebih banyak dari 16 kata, lebih menurun juga daya tangkap si sumber. Dan kalimat harus dibuat dengan pertanyaan terbuka dengan kata tanya 5W 1H. Artinya what, when, who, where, when, how.

Pertanyaan tertutup menghasilkan jawaban yang kurang memuaskan. Maksudnya, pertanyaan tertutup teoritis bisa dijawab dengan jawaban "ya" atau "tidak." Kami sering menyaksikan wartawan-wartawan Jakarta, baik televisi, radio, maupun cetak, belum menyadari teori dasar wawancara ini. Mungkin menarik untuk tahu bagaimana kesalahan-kesalahan itu dibuat dengan memperhatikan pertunjukan seleksi wartawan SCTV dalam acara Menuju Layar Liputan 6. Acara ini diadakan sejak 1997 di kampus-kampus. Namun tahun ini diselenggarakan lewat siaran langsung. Finalnya 3 Oktober lalu.

Acaranya diadakan layaknya, pemilihan penyanyi "Indonesian Idol" atau "Akademi Fantasi Indosiar." Ada acara cat walk. Peserta berputar-putar di panggung. Pakaian kelas disainer. Nyanyian. Hiburan. Lawakan. Pertanyaan disajikan oleh MC Tantowi Yahya. Lalu ada juri-juri: Okky Asokawati (model), Pia Alisjahbana (pengusaha Femina Group), Tengku Malinda (TVRI), Karni Ilyas (SCTV) dan Darwis Triadi (fotografer). Pokoknya, kesannya wangi, jauh dari kesan kerja keras mengejar berita yang jadi citra wartawan.

Seorang peserta dari Padang, Dora Multa Sari, tampil cantik dengan busana hijau pupus. Tantowi Yahya pun bertanya apa pendapat Dora soal korupsi di kalangan anggota parlemen. Dora menjawab bla bla bla.

TANTOWI: All right, wow, tepuk tangan tanda setuju membahana di studio malam ini. Eeeh ... Dora ini seorang yang penuh prestasi. Di samping sebagai presenter, Dora ini pernah berprestasi di bidang apa?

DORA: Saya pernah masuk 10 besar Puteri Indonesia.

Maka tepuk tangan pun membahana di studio. Dora tersenyum manis dan melenggak-lenggok meninggalkan panggung. Cantiknya, jangan ditanya. Singkat kata, dari 13 finalis, juri memilih lima orang "grand finalist."

Masing-masing diminta mewawancarai seorang nara sumber selama 2,5 menit, dipilih berdasarkan undian, dan nara sumber sengaja dipilih dari orang-orang yang biasa diwawancarai SCTV: Eep Saefulloh Fatah (komentator isu politik), Alan Budi Kusuma (pemain bulu tangkis), Ulfa Dwiyanti (pelawak dan penghibur), Baby Jim Aditya (aktivis HIV/AIDS), dan Brigadir Jenderal Pranowo Dahlan (komandan kesatuan polisi anti teror).

NAMA
RERATA
KATA
TANYA
BUKA
TANYA
TUTUP
SUMBER
Grace N. Louisa31.216Pranowo Dahlan
M. Achir25.833Baby Aditya
Linda P. Mada18.216Alan Kusuma
Dora M. Sari15.544Ulfa Dwiyanti
Wahyu R.19.635Eep S. Fatah


Dari lima orang ini, semuanya bertanya dengan panjang-panjang dan tertutup. Hanya Dora yang bertanya dengan singkat karena ia harus balik menjawab pertanyaan Ulfa Dwiyanti. Dora rata-rata hanya melontarkan 15.5 kata per kalimat tanya. Namun dari delapan pertanyaan itu, lima merupakan pertanyaan tertutup. Kira-kira begini tanya jawab antara Dora dan Ulfa:

DORA: Mbak Ulfa, saat banyak sekali talent show-talent show yang melahirkan bintang-bintang baru dalam waktu singkat, seperti mereka di karantina dalam waktu dua bulan, tiga bulan, kira-kira mereka menjadi bintang yang memiliki banyak sekali pengemar. Bagaimana Anda melihat talent show-talent show seperti ini?

ULFA: Maksudnya talent instant gitu roger?

DORA: Talent show Mbak.

ULFA: Kalau menurut saya itu masalah faktor. Faktor keberuntungan, beruntung bisa masuk dalam waktu singkat. Seperti kamu misalnya. Gitu lho.

DORA: Tapi Mbak Ulfa, apakah menurut Mbak Ulfa mereka itu sudah cukup siap atau bagaimana?

ULFA: Itu yang saya khawatirin. Apakah kalau kamu menang apakah cukup siap di lapangan?

DORA: Ya. Baik, Mbak Ulfa itu merintis karir dari awal?

ULFA: Sepuluh tahun lebih.

DORA: Sepuluh tahun lebih?

ULFA: Mbak berapa minggu?

DORA: Terima kasih Mbak Ulfa, jika nanti saya jadi bintang nantinya. Mbak Ulfa meniti karir lama sekali. Apakah Mbak Ulfa merasa ada ketidakadilan antara yang lama meniti karir dengan saat ini?

ULFA: Bukan ketidakadilan. Nasib beruntung. Itu dia.

Dora tampaknya memang beruntung. Malam itu juri memenangkan Dora. Namun dari perhitungan kami, para peserta rata-rata menggunakan 22 kata per pertanyaan, atau lima kata lebih banyak dari batas David Candow. Model bertanya mereka panjang-panjang dan tertutup. Ulfa Dwiyanti sendiri mempertanyakan kualitas Dora. Hanya keberuntungan saja. Tanpa kerja keras. Mereka hanya menang tampang tapi miskin pengalaman.

Tidak heran kalau banyak nara sumber yang bertanya ulang. Misalnya, Wahyu Rahmawati dari Malang, dalam segenap kegugupannya, bertanya pada Eep Saefullah Fatah, "Langsung saja. Sekarang perpolitikan setelah pemilihan presiden kedua telah dibuktikan bahwa SBY menang. Pada saat ini banyak sekali nama-nama yang dicantumkan, baik itu di SCTV sendiri maupun di suratkabar, tentang calon-calon kabinet. Menurut Anda, bagaimanakah persentase pemberian nama pemunculan nama itu terhadap kabinet nanti?"

Eep tampaknya tak mengerti pertanyaan versi 44-kata Wahyu. Eep bertanya, "Maksudnya?"

WAHYU: Maksudnya, seberapa kredibelkah orang-orang yang dicantumkan di televisi dalam kabinet nanti?

EEP: Sebetulnya belum ada satu pun konfirmasi dari SBY-Kalla tentang nama-nama yang beredar. Jadi saya kira, kita tidak bisa menilai seberapa kredibel mereka sebelum ada konfirmasi (Perhatikan Eep membantah asumsi Wahyu).

WAHYU: Tapi mengapa nama-nama itu harus dimunculkan. Apakah ini testing the weather dari SBY atau Anda optimis terhadap testing the weather dari SBY?

EEP: Sebetulnya ada kebutuhan memang untuk memunculkan nama sebelum pelantikan 20 Oktober dikarenakan masyarakat perlu tahu siapa yang akan menjadi pejabat publik. Tapi persoalannya, nama-nama yang muncul sekarang ini adalah nama-nama yang sebetulnya beredar begitu saja, tanpa ada konfirmasi. Itu yang jadi persoalan.

WAHYU: Kok bisa tanpa ada konfirmasi terlebih dahulu, kenapa harus memunculkan?

EEP: Siapa yang memunculkan?

WAHYU: Kata Pak Eep tadi bahwa tidak ada konfirmasi terhadap pemunculan nama-nama tersebut.

EEP: Sampai sekarang SBY dan Kalla belum mengkonfirmasikan satu pun nama.

WAHYU: Dan siapakah yang memunculkan adanya nama-nama di televisi tersebut?

EEP: Media massa.

WAHYU: Media massa? Jadi tidak ada konfirmasi lebih lanjut dari SBY maupun Kalla.

EEP: Belum ada sampai sekarang. Termasuk ketika kemarin SBY mengadakan ujian doktor. Ada sejumlah nama yang ikut serta hadir dan SBY mengatakan bahwa mereka bukanlah calon-calon menteri.

WAHYU: Menurut Anda sendiri Pak Eep, bagaimana kredibel yang dicantumkan? Maksud saya, nama-nama yang dicantumkan ini, menurut Pak Eep, bagaimana posisinya dalam kabinet nanti? Apakah mereka cukup mampu dalam memimpin negara kita esoknya?

EEP: Belum ada nama masalahnya. Jadi kalau misalnya Anda menanyakan kredibilitas mereka, siapa mereka kita tidak tahu. Jadi ada ketidakjelasan di sini. Siapa yang Anda maksudkan?

Tanya jawab ini menghabiskan waktu 2.5 menit karena Wahyu memakai asumsi yang salah. Tapi ini bukan monopoli Wahyu. Wahyu dan kawan-kawannya semua menunjukkan kesan sok pintar, agresif, serta tak mampu mewakili audiens dalam wawancara. Grace Natalie Louisa dan Linda Puteri Mada bertanya enam pertanyaan dan hanya satu yang terbuka. Mohammad Achir bahkan bertanya 62 kata. Kesan belum tentu sama dengan esensi. Bisa saja Dora, Wahyu dan sebagainya sebenarnya rendah hati.

Karni Ilyas, direktur pemberitaan SCTV, tak setuju dengan argumentasi kami. Karni mengatakan bahwa kelima orang ini memang bukan wartawan. Mereka hanya calon wartawan. "Ketika mereka jadi juara, mereka baru jadi calon wartawan. Masa percobaan lagi. Begini saja, yang namanya Bayu Setiyono, pantas jadi wartawan atau nggak? Bayu itu juara kami 1997. Sekarang jadi pantas setelah enam tahun. Ketika jadi juara, boleh saja Anda bicara belum pantas."

Atmakusumah Astraatmadja, mantan ketua Dewan Pers dan pemenang Hadiah Magsaysay, mengatakan pada kami bahwa ia tak setuju seleksi wartawan dilakukan secara komersial (Dora mendapat hadiah Daihatsu Xenia) dan memanfaatkan frekuensi publik untuk keperluan internal SCTV. Beberapa wartawan lain juga tak setuju karena kuatir citra wartawan diasosiasikan dengan kinerja Dora dan kawan-kawan.

Kami juga belum melakukan analisis kemampuan Bayu Setiyono. Tapi kami ingat Bayu pernah diperlakukan sama macam gaya Ulfa ketika Bayu mewawancarai Kwik Kian Gie dari PDI Perjuangan. Kwik menyebut Bayu "jongkok." Tapi menarik juga kalau mulai sekarang Anda memakai prinsip David Candow untuk menghitung jumlah kata pertanyaan-pertanyaan Bayu. Atau seberapa tertutup atau terbuka pertanyaannya? Dan tentu saja, bukan hanya Bayu, tapi kalau perlu semua wartawan televisi Jakarta. Jangan-jangan Anda akan menemukan kesimpulan bahwa kualitas mereka tak jauh lebih baik dari Dora atau Wahyu?

* Bekerja untuk Yayasan Pantau. Harsono sedang mengerjakan buku berjudul "Indonesian Political Journey." Transkrip lengkap acara SCTV ini bisa diminta lewat pantau-komunitas@yahoogroups.com. Esai dimuat Gatra, 30 Oktober 2004, Kolom Halaman 40-41

Friday, October 22, 2004

Egyptian Science Journalist Wins the Wash Media Award 2004

Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council

PRESS RELEASE

EGYPTIAN SCIENCE JOURNALIST WINS THE WASH MEDIA AWARD 2004

Other prizes for reporting on water, sanitation and hygiene issues go to journalists in the Philippines, Indonesia, Pakistan, Côte d'Ivoire, Peru and Nepal Geneva, 22 October 2004: The recipient of the first WASH Media Award is Nadia El-Awady from Egypt for her outstanding article "The Nile and its People", which illustrates the impacts of industrial pollution, sewage and solid waste management on people's health and dignity along the River Nile.

The WASH Media Award was established by the WSSCC in 2002 in order to encourage and promote investigative reporting on water, sanitation and hygiene issues by developing country journalists. An international panel of judges evaluated more than 100 entries from print, radio and TV journalists from over 40 countries.

Mrs El-Awady is the Health and Science Page Editor of IslamOnline.net She holds a Bachelor's degree in Medicine from Cairo University and is currently studying for a Master's degree in Journalism and Mass Communications at the American University in Cairo.

In her winning entry, Nadia El-Awady writes: "The River Nile has been Egypt's 'vein of life' since time immemorial. Now facing a variety of threats ranging from Bilharziasis to the dumping of raw sewage, industrial, and agricultural effluents, the longest river in the world has slowly been turned into a death sentence for Egypt 's millions." .

Commenting on Mrs El-Awady's article, Mr. Robert Lamb, Chair of the Judges' Panel, said: "This is an outstanding piece of journalistic work - clear, concise and investigative. As a journalist, one immediately gets to thinking that this is something one should be doing a larger programme about."

As the first prize winner, Mrs El-Awady will receive US$ 500 plus an all-expenses paid trip to Dakar, Senegal, to attend the first WASH Global Forum in November 2004. The 2nd prize of the media competition (US$ 500) will go to Mr Nereo C. Lujan from the Philippines for his article "Boracay's Road to Ruin" on the Philippine resort island of Boracay. .

Four other prizes of US$ 250 each will be awarded to: Mr Théodore Kouadio from Côte d'Ivoire for his article "Access to drinking water" ("Accès à l'eau potable"), Mr Andreas Harsono from Indonesia for his in-depth investigation "From the Thames to the Ciliwung", Ms Ammara Durrani from Pakistan for her article "The vulnerable water carriers" and Mr Luis Enrique Lozada Gallardo from Peru for his series of radio features on environmental sanitation ("Serie de saneamiento ambiental").

The competition included two further special awards: A "Youth Reporter award" for journalists under the age of 21 will be given to Ms Suvecha Pant from Nepal for her article "Arsenic free water a distant dream for villagers". The "Trachoma Media award", sponsored by the International Trachoma Initiative (ITI) for reporting on Trachoma-related issues, will be given to Ms. Agatha Anthony Mshanga from Television Tanzania (TVT) for her TV documentation "The Trachoma Challenge in Dodoma Rural".

The international panel of judges consisted of Mr Geoffrey Lean (UNEP's Our Planet, UK), Mr Nalaka Gunawardene (TVE Asia Pacific, Sri Lanka), Mr Robert Lamb (TVE/BBC Earth Report, UK), Mr Victor Bacchetta (Freelance journalist, Uruguay), Ms Claudia Mazzeo (Freelance journalist, Argentina) and Mr Seidick Abba (Panapress News Agency, Senegal). The panel evaluated all entries according to five criteria: originality of subject, quality of treatment and content, quality of investigation and research, the relevance of WASH issues and potential public impact.

The judges evaluated a large number of high quality entries. As a result, WSSCC has decided to give special recognition and Certificates of Appreciation to the following journalists for their valuable coverage of specific water, sanitation and hygiene issues: Mrs Yvonne Raharimanga from Madagascar (Radio feature "Water: guarantee for public health and sustainable development" - "L'eau: garante de la santé publique et du développement durable"), Mr Sergio Márquez from Mexico ("Arcediano's doubts" - "Las Dudas de Arcediano"), Ms Lina Samko from Russia ("To drink, or not to drink?"), Dr Asha Krishnakumar from India ("A Sanitation Emergency"), Mr Joachim Ezeji from Nigeria ("Nigeria and sustainable water development"), Mr Takawira Musara from Zimbabwe ("Disaster looms at Porta Farm") and Mr Rene Ezpeleta Bartolo from the Philippines ("A River of Liquid Life").

The WASH Media Award
Established by the WSSCC in 2002, the WASH Media Award encourages investigative reporting on water, sanitation and hygiene issues by developing country journalists from print, radio and TV media. An international panel of judges evaluated more than 100 stories in English, French and Spanish from over 40 countries. WSSCC received entries from print, radio and TV media that were written or produced in one of three languages - English, French and Spanish. Journalists could also submit entries in other languages but needed to provide a translation into one of the aforementioned languages.

The Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC)
The WSSCC is a leading international organisation that enhances collaboration in the water supply and sanitation sector, in order to attain universal coverage of water and sanitation services for poor people around the world. The Council was set up in 1990 through a mandate by the United Nations General Assembly to maintain the momentum of the International Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation Decade (1981-1990). In 2001 it launched the global WASH campaign "Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for all" aimed at mobilising political support for these issues and to accelerate the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals. The WSSCC Secretariat is located in Geneva and is headed by Executive Director Mr. Gourisankar Ghosh.

For more details:
Mr Sören Bauer, Communications Officer, Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council, Geneva, Switzerland, Tel: +41 22 917 8674, E-mail: bauers@who.int
Ms Eirah Gorre-Dale, WSSCC Representative to the United Nations, Tel.:+1(914) 309-5491; +1(914) 923-8575; Email: Eirahgd@aol.com

© 2003 Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council
International Environment House - Chemin des Anémones 9
1219 Châtelaine - Geneva - Switzerland

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Belajar dari Kao untuk Mamasa

Andreas Harsono
Ketua Yayasan Pantau

Pada pertengahan Agustus 1999 terjadi perkelahian antar desa di Malifut, sebuah sudut Pulau Halmahera, antara orang-orang Kao, yang beragama Kristen, melawan orang-orang Makian, yang beragama Islam.

Pemicunya, malam itu ada orang Kao bikin pesta, sialnya, ada satu atau dua pemuda mabuk, melempari rumah-rumah orang Makian. Orang-orang Makian marah. Malam itu juga mereka mengeluarkan pedang dan menyerang orang-orang Kao. Satu lelaki Kao yang tinggal di pinggiran desa Kao meninggal. Perkelahian berlangsung hingga pagi. Semua orang Kao pagi itu meninggalkan lima desa mereka, menuju desa-desa Kao lain, yang mengelilingi Malifut.

Orang Kao di desa-desa yang mengelilingi Malifut membalas. Beberapa minggu kemudian, mereka menyerang semua 16 desa Makian. Orang-orang Makian melarikan diri. Kerusuhan menjalar kemana-mana hingga Tobelo dan Galela, dua kota besar di Halmahera, maupun Ternate, ibukota Maluku Utara, kota terbesar di kawasan itu. Puluhan ribu rumah terbakar dan ribuan orang mati.

Namun penyebab persengketaan ini terjadi karena 16 desa Makian serta lima desa orang Kao itu hendak dijadikan satu kecamatan bila pemisahan Maluku Utara dari provinsi Maluku diresmikan pada September 1999. Mereka akan dijadikan kecamatan tersendiri, terpisah dari Kecamatan Kao.

Ceritanya, orang Makian mengungsi dari Pulau Makian pada 1979. Mereka ditempatkan di Malifut karena ada gunung hendak meletus. Orang Kao menerima mereka. Semuanya ditempatkan di kecamatan Kao. Setelah 20 tahun, tentu saja, orang Makian merasa Malifut sudah layaknya mereka punya wilayah. Anak-anak mereka lahir di sana. Banyak yang bisa berbahasa Kao.

Namanya juga manusia. Kehidupan tak bisa diatur ibarat mesin. Namun orang Kao khawatir karena dalam rencana Kecamatan Malifut terdapat lima desa Kao. Lima desa ini dikelilingi 16 desa Makian. Ada kekhawatiran kalau berdiri sendiri, orang Kao dari lima desa itu, jadi minoritas di tengah kecamatan Islam. Mereka khawatir pendapatan dan penghidupan mereka terganggu.

Lalu meledaklah pemicu berupa perkelahian antar desa. Ketika Juli lalu saya mengunjungi Malifut, suasana saling curiga masih kental, dan sepanjang jalan, saya melihat bekas rumah-rumah terbakar. Banyak juga rumah-rumah baru dengan bentuk seragam dari batu semen dan atap seng mulai dibangun. Rasanya sedih sekali.

Perkelahian di Mamasa minggu lalu, mengingatkan saya ke sengketa Kao-Makian di Halmahera. Sama-sama ada soal perbatasan baru. Ada wilayah baru. Ada provinsi baru. Di sana Provinsi Maluku Utara dan di sini Sulawesi Barat. Di sana ada soal Kecamatan Kao dan Kecamatan Malifut. Di sini ada Kabupaten Mamasa dan Kabupaten Polewali. Ada isu agama Islam dan agama Kristen. Sama-sama ada ketakutan menjadi minoritas. Orang Kao yang Kristen takut jadi minoritas di desa Malifut yang Islam.

Di Mamasa pun juga ada orang Islam takut jadi minoritas di tengah orang Kristen. Lalu soal adat. Lalu ada jadi jagoan-jagoan yang suka berkelahi. Pendek kata, Malifut punya banyak kesamaan dengan Mamasa. Mungkin sebagai wartawan, saya tak tahu bisa berbuat apa untuk mencegah darah tumpah lebih banyak. Toh kalau dorang mau berkelahi kitorang tak bisa apa khan?

Tapi saya sering sedih sekali kalau melihat pertumpahan darah karena beda identitas agama, identitas etnik, yang meluap di mana-mana di Indonesia ini, mulai dari Aceh (“bangsa Aceh” lawan “bangsa Jawa”), Kalimantan (Dayak-Madura), Papua (“penduduk asli” lawan “pendatang”), Maluku (Kristen lawan Islam), Jawa (Cina lawan “pribumi”), dan sebagainya. Ini belum lagi kalau belajar sejarah, dari Darul Islam hingga PRRI hingga Permesta, dari Gerakan Aceh Merdeka hingga Organisasi Papua Merdeka.

Belum lagi pendudukan Indonesia terhadap Timor Timur. Sejarah penuh darah. Menariknya, ketika membaca makalah Nils Bubandt dari Universitas Aarhus, “Mobilising for Conflict: Rumors, Pamphlets, and the Politics of Paranoia”, yang bercerita tentang huru-hara Maluku Utara, saya jadi tahu bahwa informasi, maupun disinformasi, memiliki peran penting dalam mengobarkan ketegangan antar agama di Halmahera. Orang jadi takut lalu mempersenjatai diri. Amarah berkobar karena ada kabar masjid ini atau gereja itu dibakar.

Gosip bertebaran. Fotokopi menjadi raja. Surat kabar menerbitkan berita cacat. Wartawan ikut-ikutan berpolitik. Media Jakarta tak kalah kuatnya dalam menciptakan kegelisahan di Halmahera. Ada yang sangat berhati-hati sehingga beritanya tak jelas, ada yang main hantam tanpa memeriksa akurasi beritanya. Bagaimana tidak? Para koresponden media Jakarta ini pun kebanyakan juga orang setempat. Mereka punya agama. Entah Islam entah Kristen.

Mereka mungkin punya saudara yang jadi korban. Ada yang rumahnya ikut terbakar. Kebanyakan takut melakukan reportase ke daerah di mana agamanya beda. Wartawan Kristen takut masuk ke daerah Islam. Wartawan Muslim takut masuk ke daerah Kristen. Namun saya percaya informasi yang bermutu akan membuat warga mampu mengambil keputusan yang baik. Makin baik mutu informasinya, makin baik pula mutu keputusan warga. Dan informasi yang bermutu seyogianya datang dari media bermutu. Makin bermutu media yang dimiliki masyarakat Mamasa, makin bermutu pula keputusan yang akan mereka ambil.

Kini ujian terletak pada pundak media di Mamasa, Parepare, Makassar, maupun Jakarta. Apakah media mampu menyajikan informasi bermutu sehingga warga Mamasa maupun Mamasa Polewali bisa percaya dan mengandalkan media resmi, daripada gosip, fotokopian, serta kabar bohong?

Mungkin para petinggi Fajar Group, kelompok media yang juga memiliki Radar Mandar, yang beredar di Mamasa, perlu menugaskan lebih banyak wartawan meliput Mamasa. Langkah sama bisa diambil oleh Tribun Timur dan Pedoman Rakyat. Makin banyak wartawan ditugaskan di Mamasa, makin banyak mereka mengumpulkan informasi. Makin kaya pula bahan untuk disunting dan diterbitkan.

Wartawan-wartawan pun perlu mengingat kembali pelajaran Bill Kovach dan Tom Rosenstiel dalam buku “Sembilan Elemen Jurnalisme”, bahwa esensi jurnalisme adalah verifikasi. Jangan terbitkan berita yang belum diverifikasi kebenaran atau kesalahannya. Agama jangan mendikte liputan kita. Agama diperlukan wartawan agar ia bisa lebih memahami materi liputannya. Namun bukan untuk mendikte. Lalu ada baiknya juga bekerja dalam kelompok, Kristen maupun Islam, agar kalau ada liputan yang kurang dimengerti, bisa tanya kepada rekan kerja, “Eh isu ini bisa kitorang terbitkan?”

Ini penting agar perkelahian ini bisa segera diatasi. Kelak kalau dorang mau bikin referendum khusus Mamasa, mau ikut batas ini atau batas itu, urusan akan lebih mudah karena tak banyak rumah terbakar, tak banyak orang mati, dan dendam bisa lebih cepat padam. Referendum juga lebih baik daripada keputusan hanya diambil oleh politisi.

Kalau tidak, saya khawatir, kerusuhan akan makin melebar. Sama dengan dendam Kao dan Makian, dendam Kristen dan Islam di Mamasa, juga bisa menjalar ke daerah yang lebih luas.

(Penulis bulan lalu mengunjungi 12 kota di Sulawesi dan sedang menulis buku tentang sengketa etnik dan agama berjudul “Indonesian Political Travel”).

Harian Fajar, Makassar, 2004-10-19

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Mencermati Kembali Kasus ”Tempo"

Oleh SEPTIAWAN SANTANA K.
Pikiran Rakyat Sabtu, 09 Oktober 2004

KETIKA pengadilan menjatuhkan vonis hukuman kepada Pemimpin Redaksi Tempo (16/9), atas kasus pencemaran nama baik Tomy Winata, terjadi silang-pendapat.

Di pengadilan, pihak Tomy Winata tetap kencang menuntut. Di kalangan pers, berbagai pihak menyoal keabsahan sumber anonim dan dokumen yang dijadikan dasar pelaporan Tempo.

Hal ini bermula dari pelaporan majalah Tempo berjudul “Ada Tomy di Tenabang” (edisi 3-9 Maret 2003). Dalam pelaporan tersebut, Tempo mengangkat kasus kebakaran di Pasar Tanah Abang. Pemberitaan Tempo berbeda dengan pemberitaan pada umumnya. Di laporannya, Tempo menyebut ada Tomy Winata tersangkut di belakang peristiwa kebakaran.

Berita ini mengutip sebuah sumber anonim yang mengatakan proposal Tomy Winata untuk melakukan renovasi Pasar Tanah Abang. Dokumen proposalnya sendiri tidak diberikan. Wartawan Tempo yang melihat langsung dokumen tersebut tidak diberi kewenangan untuk memfotokopi. Namun, hanya diberi jatah untuk mencatat, dan melihatnya dengan saksama.

Dari sana, berita dibuat. Bila melihat dari isi pelaporannya, berbagai pihak yang terkait dengan dokumen proposal renovasi diwawancara. Tomy sendiri diangkat.

Setelah kasus ini meledak, dari serangan mendadak ke kantor redaksi Tempo, sampai gugat-menggugat di pengadilan, ditambah berbagai diskusi di berbagai ruang publik, dan terakhir ialah keputusan pengadilan, keramaian pun terpicu. Keramaian mendiskusikan keabsahan pemberitaan Tempo. Keramaian menyoalkan Tempo vs Tomy.

Tulisan ini hendak menyoroti kaidah jurnalistik yang dipraktikkan Tempo di dalam pelaporan tersebut.

Kriminalisasi pers

Dari kasus Tempo, berbagai pihak menyoroti kinerja pers Indonesia. Di tengah berbagai sajian pers, yang kini leluasa memberitakan berbagai peristiwa tanpa takut pembredelan, orang-orang menilai bahwa kasus Tempo merupakan pelajaran bagi para awak pers Indonesia.

Tidak terlalu salah. Tapi juga tidak terlalu benar. Dalam kasus Tempo, tidak ada soal gosip dan pemberitaan yang berat sebelah yang menyerang satu pihak. Di berita ini, ada sanggahan dari Direktur Utama Pasar Jaya, Kepala Pasar Tanah Abang atau Gubernur DKI Sutiyoso, bahkan dari pihak Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN). Dan, dari pihak Tomy Winata sendiri, dilaporkan bantahannya. Berikut ini kutipannya:

Tomy Winata, 45 tahun, juga menyangkal keterkaitannya dengan rencana renovasi Pasar Tanah Abang. Ia merasa belum pernah berbicara tentang hal itu. “Anda orang keenam yang telefon. Saya belum pernah bicara dengan siapa pun, baik sipil, swasta maupun pemerintah,” katanya geram. “Saya ini enggak makan nangkanya (tapi) dikasih getahnya. Kalau (mereka) berani ketemu muka, saya tabokin dia. Kalau ada saksi, bukti, atau data yang mengatakan saya deal duluan, saya kasih harta saya separuh.”

Pemunculan Tomy juga ada ketika Tempo memberitakan aksi penyerangan para preman ke kantor redaksi Tempo (Tempo, 23/3/03). Di sini, Tomy bicara panjang lebar, didampingi rekanannya, kepada delapan wartawan Tempo. Dalam wawancara yang cukup terbuka, laporan Tempo memberitakan penolakan Tomy dari tuduhan aktor politik di belakang aksi kekerasan di kantor redaksi Tempo.

Dengan demikian, bila melihat keseimbangan berita yang dilaporkan Tempo, sudah terpenuhi kaidah jurnalistik yang dilakukan Tempo. Berbagai pihak yang dinilai terkait dengan kebakaran Pasar Tanah Abang telah dikonfirmasi. Verifikasi terhadap berbagai nara sumber, yang harus menjawab keberadaan Tomy di belakang kebakaran, dilakukan. Berbagai jawaban itu merupakan klarifikasi terhadap pihak-pihak yang berkompeten dari keberadaan Pasar Tanah Abang. Tomy sendiri, sebagai orang dan fokus pemberitaan dari kebakaran tersebut, juga telah diklarifikasi.

Jadi, bila melihat teknis pelaporan yang dilakukan Tempo, beberapa kaidah dasar peliputan jurnalistik telah terpenuhi. Asas cover both side dilakukan. Verifikasi terhadap keabsahan dokumen proposal renovasi pasar dikerjakan. Klarifikasi kepada pihak yang menjadi tokoh berita (Tomy) dilakukan pula.

Dokumen

Diskusi melebar kepada permasalahan dokumen. Tempo telah gagal melaporkan sebuah berita karena ketiadaan dokumen yang bisa dijadikan barang bukti.

Jurnalisme mewajibkan fakta sebagai dasar pelaporan. Melalui fakta, jurnalisme mendapatkan kepercayaan masyarakat. Berbagai fakta itu bisa hadir melalui orang-orang yang terlibat di dalam sebuah peristiwa, data tulisan atau statistik, atau dokumen-dokumen yang dikeluarkan pihak-pihak atau instansi. Proposal merupakan data penting bagi sebuah pelaporan berita yang hendak mengungkap keberadaan atau kelangsungan sebuah kegiatan projek. Dalam kasus renovasi Pasar Tanah Abang, proposal itu juga merupakan alat penting bagi verifikasi wartawan di dalam mengalkulasi peristiwa yang hendak diberitakannya.

Tapi, keberadaan dokumen, bagi jurnalisme, memiliki konteks tertentu. Tidak setiap peristiwa berita akan memakai dokumen sebagai sandaran pemberitaannya. Sebuah media harian akan keteteran jika harus menemukan dokumen dalam memberitakan kejadian sehari-harinya. Ketika sebuah media melansir peristiwa pertemuan para pejabat kepolisian elite dengan tokoh pengeboman, di sebuah tempat, media tersebut tidak memerlukan keabsahan si pejabat tersebut dengan pencarian dokumen surat tugas yang dikeluarkan oleh instansi kepolisian terkait. Faktanya ialah wartawan melihat langsung keberadaan si pejabat dengan tokoh pengeboman. Jepretan kamera foto menjadi sarana lanjutan dari pemberitaan. Bila tidak ada foto pun, wartawan berhak memberitakan keberadaan peristiwa pertemuan tersebut.

Farid Gaban, seorang wartawan yang cukup serius mendiskusikan pelbagai soal jurnalistik, sampai berujar, “pembuktian atau verifikasi jurnalisme itu bukanlah pekerjaan ilmiah.” Bila seketat dunia ilmiah, pemberitaan forensik dan data-data jenis ledakan yang diungkap media akan keteteran. Atmakusumah, wartawan senior dan mantan Ketua Dewan Pers, menandaskan bahwa wartawan tidak mungkin harus mengecek sampai demikian rinci keabsahan data yang diungkap pihak-pihak yang berkompeten. Bukan hanya soal waktu deadline, yang jadi hambatan, tetapi hal ini terkait dengan soal tingkatan verifikasi data yang dikerjakan jurnalisme.

Dunia jurnalisme adalah dunia pelaporan. Kebertanggungjawaban jurnalistik adalah pada tingkat keakurasian fakta. Fakta-fakta yang terkompilasi, secara jurnalisme, merupakan hasil observasi. Tingkat observasinya, baik lewat wawancara dan penelusuran paper trail, merupakan upaya yang tidak serigid dunia akademisi. Metode riset dari pekerjaan peliputan jurnalisme berbeda dengan dunia akademisi.

Maka itulah, narasumber menjadi buruan media dalam mengangkat sebuah peristiwa. Nara sumber menjadi salah satu sandaran faktual media dalam menguatkan pemberitaannya.

Sumber anonim

Peliputan jurnalistik kerap menemukan nara sumber yang tak mau disebutkan jati dirinya. Sementara, dari kesaksian, keterlibatan, keterangan yang dimilikinya, pemberitaan tergantung. Hal ini merupakan permasalahan yang cukup pelik. Persyaratan jurnalisme ialah fakta-fakta yang siap diverifikasi, terbuka untuk ditelusuri datanya, mudah dikenali berbagai nara sumber yang memberikan informasinya, dan berbagai pertanggungjawaban berita lainnya.

Maka itu, jika ada kejadian nara sumber yang tidak mau dilaporkan keberadaan jati dirinya, atau disebut sumber anonim, hal ini akan mengurangi kredibilitas media. Pada momen tertentu malah mengakibatkan persoalan hukum. Penuntutan terhadap kevalidan laporan yang telah mencemarkan nama-nama atau pihak-pihak tertentu.

Maka itulah, jurnalisme mencantumkan beberapa persyaratan bila sebuah media hendak mengangkat pelaporan berita dengan sumber-sumber anonim. Pencantuman keterangan “menurut sumber yang layak dipercaya” dihadirkan, di laporan berita, setelah media atau wartawannya menghitung beberapa kriteria pencantuman sumber anonim.

Andreas Harsono mengutip Bill Kovach dan Tom Rosenstiel (dalam buku Warp Speed, 1999), mengenai sumber anonim. Kovach dan Rosenstiel membahas pemakaian sumber anonim pada kasus Monica Lewinsky dengan Presiden AS, Bill Clinton.

Pertama, sumber anonim ialah orang yang berada pada lingkaran pertama “peristiwa berita”. Ia adalah orang yang menjadi saksi atau terkait langsung pada peristiwa tersebut. Kedua, keselamatan nara sumber terancam bila identitasnya diketahui, baik nyawanya atau orang-orang terdekatnya, atau bisa juga perkerjaannya. Ketiga, motivasi narasumber benar-benar untuk kepentingan publik. Keempat, integritas narasumber benar-benar bisa dipertanggungjawabkan. Kelima, pencantuman narasumber anonim ini diketahui dan atas ijin redaktur atau atasan si wartawan. Keenam, keterangan anonim ini minimal didapat dari dua nara sumber, atau sumbernya minimal dua orang. Ketujuh, membuat kesepakatan pembatalan keanoniman jika kemudian terbukti nara sumber sengaja berbohong atau menyesatkan publik.

Ketujuh, syarat pencantuman sumber anonim ini cukup representatif. Berbagai pihak mengamini kekuatan pemikirannya. “Saya pribadi sependapat,” kata wartawan Farid Gaban, yang cukup tajam pandangannya terhadap jurnalisme. Media massa harus memperlakukan sumber anonim dengan sangat hati-hati, dan memakainya seminimal mungkin. Semua wartawan harus menyimak dengan baik paparan tujuh syarat sumber anonim ini.

Bagaimana tujuh syarat sumber anonim ini di dalam kasus Tempo.

Menurut Farid Gaban, Tempo telah cukup justified dalam menggunakan sumber anonim. Syarat pertama telah terpenuhi karena sumber anonim Tempo ialah konsultan renovasi pasar. Syarat kedua juga terpenuhi, khususnya bila melihat brutalnya penyerangan orang-orang yang ingin membela Tomy Winata ke kantor redaksi Tempo. “Melihat begitu brutalnya reaksi kubu Tomy Winata dalam menanggapi berita itu,” menurut Farid Gaban, “saya kira kita bisa membayangkan apa yang akan terjadi pada ‘sang konsultan”. Dengan demikian, ada keabsahan Tempo untuk melindungi sumber anonimnya. Syarat ketiga, terpenuhi karena niat membela kepentingan publik termaktub di dalam laporan Tempo: hal ini terkait dengan berbagai kerugian yang harus diderita para para pedagang Tanah Abang.

“Syarat ke-4, saya tidak tahu persis,” kata Farid. “Ini merupakan wilayah yang sama sekali menjadi judgment dari wartawan dan redaktur Tempo. Kecuali bisa dibuktikan sebaliknya, bahwa sumber tersebut suka berbohong.” Menurut penulis, mengukur integritas sumber anonim memang sangat sulit bagi kita. Namun, dari pemberitaan Tempo selama ini, majalah berita Tempo termasuk media yang memiliki integritas jurnalisme yang cukup representatif. Demikian pula dengan wartawannya, Ahmad Taufik, yang melaporkan pemberitaan tersebut. Jadi, keintegritasan narasumber dapat diukur dari integritas Tempo dan wartawannya selama ini dalam melakukan pekerjaan jurnalistik.

Syarat selanjutnya ialah syarat kelima. Tempo telah memenuhi persyaratan ini. “Baik reporter maupun redaktur mengetahui adanya deal untuk melindungi kerahasiaan sumber.” Secara keredaksian, antara wartawan dengan redaktur telah bersepakat untuk melindungi kerahasiaan sumber.

“Kecuali syarat ke-6 (Aturan Ben Bradlee) dan mungkin syarat ke-7 (Aturan Bill Kovach),” nilai Farid Gaban, “semua syarat terpenuhi bagi Tempo untuk memakai sumber anonim dalam berita tentang kebakaran Pasar Tanah Abang.”

Dalam beberapa kali perbincangan dengan wartawan Tempo Ahmad Taufik, penulis mendapat keterangan akan beberapa nara sumber yang telah diklarifikasinya. Taufik melakukan beberapa pengecekan ke beberapa sumber anonim. Karena itulah, di dalam laporannya, ia mengklarifikasikannya kembali kepada beberapa narasumber lain, yang berwenang dan kompeten (bukan sebagai sumber anonim) dan menolak keterkaitan Tomy Winata di dalam peristiwa tersebut, serta melaporkannya. Akan halnya syarat ketujuh, hal ini pun kembali berpulang pada integritas Tempo sebagai sebuah media berita yang harus tetap mewaspadai kemungkinan terjadinya atau terbuktikannya nara sumber yang sengaja berbohong atau menyesatkan publik. Bila ini terjadi, Tempo wajib memberitahukan kepada masyarakat bahwa pemberitaannya telah menyesatkan masyarakat.

Demikianlah beberapa segi jurnalistik yang dipraktikkan Tempo di dalam pelaporan berita mengenai kebakaran Pasar Tanah Abang, yang berbuntut panjang, dan telah setahunan lebih ini menjadi wacana bagi pers Indonesia.***

Penulis, Pengajar Jurnalistik Fakultas Ilmu Komunitas Universitas Islam Bandung.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Baroto Island



Miangas Island has a small atol or isolated island called Baroto. I posed here, unfortunately, without hiding the book inside my T-shirt on a beach in Miangas with Baroto Island's view.

I visited Miangas in September 2004 to collect data for my book. It is a small island with only 623 people. It is closer to the Philippines' Mindanao than to Indonesia's Manado. It is one of Indonesia's northernmost island, located among the Talaud islands.

The food is excellent. I had rica-rica tuna almost everyday. No telephone waves. No electricity. No television. Life is quiet on this small islet.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Despite big changes in Jakarta, doubts over Indonesian unity persists

Reporting: Indonesia

by Andreas Harsono
American Reporter Correspondent

TOMOHON, Indonesia, Sept. 28, 2004 -- Jakarta may have made enormous progress by organizing the first direct presidential elections in Indonesian history, but skepticism about its Javanese-dominated governments remains high in this Christian-dominated town in northern Sulawesi where distrust is deeply rooted.

One need not to talk to the Tomohon establishment to get that feeling. Street vendors, NGO activists and students all talk openly about issues such as widespread corruption, the imbalanced budget between Indonesia's main island of Java and the outer islands, as well as the dominance of the ethnic Javanese in many government, business, media, and military positions.

Bert Andriaan Supit, the secretary general of the Minahasa Union, an ethnic organization which advocates the interest of the Minahasans and author of a recently-published book "Melawan Arus" ("Against the Current"), said that Indonesia's democratization reform has stalled because it was hijacked by Jakarta's establishment.

"Jakarta needs to have a total cultural transformation if it wants to win the heart and mind of the people," said Supit in a speech in front of young activists Thursday evening, just four days after the September 20 election.

Minahasan is the dominant ethnic group in this area. They are mostly Christians after Dutch missionaries began to work here in the 18th Century.

Javanese compose about 40 percent of Indonesia's 220 million population. Most Indonesian leaders, including former presidents Suharto and Abdurrahman Wahid, and presidential candidate Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, are Javanese. President Megawati Sukarnoputri is of mixed heritage. Her father, Indonesian founding president Sukarno, was half Javanese and half Balinese, but he is widely considered to be a Javanese as well.

President-elect Yudhoyono, a retired army general, is to succeed Megawati next month. With over 109 million of the estimated 120 million votes cast in the election counted Friday, Yudhoyono had 61 percent to incumbent Megawati's 39 percent, according to the General Election Commission.

Minahasans doubted whether Yudhoyono might seek radical change in a place like northern Sulawesi, where Indonesia's problem is seen to be much more complicated than a president can address. Minahasans campaigned for decades to become a federal state in Indonesia - not a province in the unitarian one.

In the late 1950s, their demand culminated in an armed rebellion against Jakarta, nicknamed the Permesta movement. It began in March 1957 and involved many public figures from eastern Indonesia, which includes northern and southern Sulawesi as well as the Molluccas and the smaller islands of southern Indonesia.

When negotiation between Jakarta delegation and the rebels were botched, most of the rebellious leaders backed off - but not the Minahasans. American scholar Barbara Harvey wrote in her book, "Permesta: Half-a-Rebellion," that the Minahasans basically asked for equal treatment but their movement was squashed by Java-based soldiers in 1961.

Today many scholars believe that Indonesia is fated to disintegrate, like the former Yugoslavia, because like Yugoslavia is a new and artificial nation lacking firm historical roots.

Indonesia comprises 13,677 islands, stretching from east to west over a distance that is approximately as far as that from London to Moscow. It is the world's largest Muslim country, but has a significant Christian majority in the east. Its 220 million people speak more than 300 different languages, and their common history includes a Dutch colonial past and a lingua franca known as Bahasa Indonesia developed from the Malay language.

The nation's former strongman, General Suharto, managed to keep Indonesia together by brutal means, but as soon as he fell from power in May 1998, the institutions that he had built up also began to crumble.

"There was a systematic cultural genocide conducted by the Suharto government," said Supit, adding that young Minahasan students are taught about "national history" from a Javanese perspective. They learn to admire "national figures" like the famous Prince Diponegoro, who fought against the Dutch from 1825 to 1830, but not local heroes in Minahasa or other places.

Tomohon is the seat of the synod of the influential Christian Evangelical Church in Minahasa, locally known as GMIM, as well as some Christian colleges. It hosted an important Christian national convention in 1980.

But a careful reading of Minahasa's three newspapers, which are published from Manado, about a one-hour ride south of Tomohon, yields the impression that the newspapers would like to see one or two Minahasans sit in Yudhoyono's new cabinet.

The Global News, for instance, quoted anonymous sources and headlined news reports about the possibilities of Ernst Everts Mangidaan, a former governor of Northern Sulawesi, being named to sit either in the cabinet or become deputy speaker of the Indonesian parliament. Mangindaan is now the secretary general of Yudhoyono's Democrat Party.

Another Minahasan rumored to be on the possible cabinet list is Rizald Max Rompas, a founding member of Yudhoyono's party and a professor at Manado's Sam Ratulangi University.

"It reflects what many people here want to see from the new government," said Friko Poli, the chief editor of Komentar, another daily newspaper established after the fall of Suharto.

"Minahasans were sidelined after the Permesta movement. We never see Minahasans sitting in the cabinet. Now we want to see Minahasans being in the central government like we used to be," Poli said.

But easier said than done. In Jakarta, right-wing newspapers, like the bi-weekly Sabili, frequently accused the Yudhoyono camp of accommodating "too many Christians" in his inner circle. It was a strange accusation, because Yudhoyono has also built a coalition with two Islamic parties, the Moon Star Party and the Justice Party, which campaign for ortodox Islamic law, or sharia, in Indonesia. That is a sensitive issue that many Minahasans vow to fight against if it is ever put into practice in Indonesia.

Yudhoyono's running mate, the vice-president-elect, is Jusuf Kalla, a Bugis ethnic businessman from southern Sulawesi, long a leading figure in Suharto's Golkar party. Kally was sacked from a ministerial post in 2000 by President Wahid for alleged corruption which was never convincingly spelled out.

One of Yudhoyono's main political backers is Yusril Izha Mahendra, a former Suharto speech writer and the leader of the fundamentalist-leaning Moon Star Party. Yusril's two recent stints as justice minister have done nothing to improve Indonesia's appalling judicial system. Headlines claimed this week that Yudhoyono had entrusted Yusril with putting together the new cabinet.

American Reporter Correspondent Andreas Harsono, who has reported from indonesia for us since 1996, won a Nieman International Fellowship at Harvard University for 1999-2000. He is working on a book.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Ten Tips for a Better Interview

International Center for Journalists



1. Be prepared! Always read up on the subject you are reporting about and the person you are interviewing. Your source will appreciate your effort, and you will be able to skip questions that can be answered by an assistant, book or document. When scheduling the appointment, ask your source to suggest documents or other sources of information about the topic you will discuss. The interviewee will appreciate your interest and often share valuable documents before the interview. Make sure your tape recorder has batteries that work. Bring an extra tape as well as pens and notebook.

2. Set the rules of the interview right up front! Be sure your subject understands the story you are working on (this will help keep the interview on track). Additionally, the interviewee must understand that everything they say is "on the record." It is best to establish these ground rules when making the interview appointment. Although most government officials have enough experience with the media to indicate when something is "off-the record" or "on background," other experts may not understand the differences. Remember that an upfront clarification may be required (especially when your source's job or life could be endangered by being quoted).

3. Be on time! The worst impression you can make on a source is being late for the interview.

4. Be observant! Observe details of the place and of your interviewing partner; this can add color to your story. If you are interviewing people in their home or office, be sure to get a good look around and note what you see. For example, they may have some old photos that show them in a more personal light. You may start an interview with assumptions about a person and leave with a completely different impression. However, this may be exactly what your source intended. Perception is a tricky business! Try to talk to others, colleagues or friends of your source, to get a bigger picture.

5. Be polite. Don't rush your source! It is important to establish a polite rapport and a level of comfort for the interviewee. Some interviewees, on the other hand, need a couple minutes to become comfortable talking to reporters. Even though you may only have 30 minutes for an interview, you should not rush your subject. If you sense the interviewee is in a hurry, adjust your timing accordingly. Keep in mind, everyone is different. Taking the time to get to know your sources will prove valuable, especially when you need to call with follow-up questions or use them as a source for future stories. If the interview goes well, it may even go beyond the scheduled time. Give yourself plenty of time between appointments to avoid scheduling conflicts.

6. Listen but don't be afraid to interrupt when you don't understand! Keep your audience in mind! One reason you are conducting this interview is to explain it to your readers. If your subject uses scientific jargon or explanations only his/her peers would understand, politely interrupt and ask for further explanation. Never be embarrassed about not knowing
something.

7. Silence is golden. Sooner or later you will have to ask the tough questions that your subject may be loath to discuss. When you start asking those provocative questions, the answers most likely will be short, useless or carefully worded. You may not get an answer at all. If this occurs, look your source in the eye and don't say a word. In most cases, your opponent will begin to feel uncomfortable and begin to share information again. If this doesn't work, ask for sources who might be able to answer your question.

8. Maintain eye contact! A reporter who spends most of the interview bent over taking notes or looking into a notebook can be as disconcerting as a tape recorder in an interviewee's face. While taking notes and recording the interview, maintain as much eye contact as possible. Learn to take abbreviated notes looking down only once in a while so you can focus on your interviewee. This will make the interview more like a conversation, and enable everyone to be more relaxed.

9. Before you leave ask your source if there is anything that you might have forgotten to ask. Perhaps the interviewee is burning to tell you useful information, but you did not even think to ask that question. Don't leave without getting a contact number or e-mail address and a good time to call with follow-up questions. Always ask for other sources. Colleagues or friends of the interviewee may be more knowledgeable or willing and able to speak to you. Thank your source for spending time talking with you before you leave.

10. Review your notes right after the interview! Don't wait until the end of the day or later in the week to review your notes. Go over them right away, while everything is fresh in your mind, filling in your shorthand and elaborating on your observations. Skip that date for drinks with your office pals until after you have reviewed and organized your notes.