Company Accounts Blocked by the Attorney General’s Office: Palm Oil Mill in Central Bangka Stops Operation

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Illustration of Palm oil plantation. Photo by: Sawit Fest 2021 / Arjuna Hasanto Siburian

PALMOILMAGAZINE, BANGKA TENGAH –  The fears of workers at the mills of PT Mutiara Hijau Lestari (MHL) and CV Mutiara Alam Lestari (MAL) of becoming unemployed have materialized due to the General Attorney of the Indonesian Republic blocking the companies’ accounts.

Jhohan Adhi Ferdian, the attorney and spokesman for PT MAS, PT BPB, PT MHL, and CV MAL, expressed regret over the difficulties faced by the affected smallholders and mill workers.

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In an official statement, Jhohan announced that during a meeting on May 13, 2024, at the official residence of the Governor of Bangka Belitung (Babel), the acting governor urged the companies to resume operations.

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“We would like to inform you eight points. The first governor in duty of Babel asked the two mills to immediately purchase and produce fresh fruit bunches (FFB) from the villagers and smallholders at least in one week with every consideration that we could not afford,” he said, as quoted from TIMELIMES, Sunday, May 19, 2024.

The second is that the mills should stop producing or purchasing FFB from the villagers until the accounts of the companies are active again. “The third, about the account block, was that the management of the companies tried to send two proposals to re-open their accounts from the general attorney so that they could operate and purchase the villagers’ FFB but there was no response at all,” he said.

Fourth, the managements of the companies should fire the workers and laborers that started on May 17, 2024. “The unemployed workers could be about 600 men and the company would realize the available regulation,” he said while adding the fifth and sixth point.

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In the seventh, the companies had sent legal information for Labors, One Stop Service, and Investment Agency Regency of Bangka Tengah,, as well as Labor Agency Babel Province. “The last is that the managements of the companies would open themselves if governor in duty of Babel has other relevant option besides the options told in the meeting on May 13, 2024,” he said.

Jhohan asked for support from the villagers so that this could be considered by the investigator to open the account blocks of the companies and they would operate again. “Please, we ask for your support and pray so that we would pass this test. Personally, we are sad to see so many social media posts that the villagers worry. Whatever it is, I am one villager in Bangka Tengah and have personal connection with smallholders here,” he said. (T2)

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