- The Bakiriang forest, before the wildlife vote, was Batui's customary forest. After the state took over and made it a forest area, even with conservation status, palm oil plantations began to grow there. The condition of the forest has changed.
- In 1936, Bakiriang Forest was designated as a forest that must be protected based on the King of Banggai Decree No. 4/1936, covering an area of 3,500 hectares, located in the Batui Mountain Forest Complex. It extends south to the coast of the Bakiriang River estuary. The forest complex is flanked by two large villages, Moilong and Sinorang, which were formerly part of the Batui sub-district.
- The King of Banggai's decree making the Bakiriang Forest mandatory for protection supports the Batui Indigenous people in preserving the Bakiriang forest and their customs and cultural identity.
- Eva Susanti Bande, coordinator of the People's Front for Palm Advocacy (FRAS) Central Sulawesi, said that if people want to control land in forest areas, they can go through the agrarian reform object land (Tora) route. This is regulated in Presidential Regulation (Perpres) Number 86/2018 on Agrarian Reform.
Baharuddin H Saleh frowns and his eyes turn red when he talks about the Bakiriang Wildlife Sanctuary in Sinorang Village, Batui Selatan Sub-district, Banggai District, Central Sulawesi. He was saddened that Bakiriang's forest had been eroded into palm oil plantations.
"In the past, the Bakiriang forest was not like that," said the head of the Batui District Customary Institution, last April.
Before the wildlife vote, Bakiriang was Batui's customary forest. After the state took over and made it a forest area, even with conservation status, oil palm plantations began to grow there. The condition of the forest has changed.
As a nonprofit journalism organization, we depend on your support to fund journalism covering underreported issues around the world. Donate any amount today to become a Pulitzer Center Champion and receive exclusive benefits!