Community involvement and active participation is very much needed in the supervision of mining activities, bearing in mind that mining activities can trigger environmental damage, as well as have a direct impact on the economic and social life of the community, especially those who live around the mine. This also applies to people in West Nusa Tenggara Province (NTB). NTB Province is one of the largest mining producing provinces in Indonesia with 271 Mining Business Licenses (IUP) in NTB Province per 2019 (ESDM NTB Province, 2019).


To supervise mining activities, beside of equipped with knowledge related to the types of obligations of mining companies, the community also needs to obtain information related to mining licenses operating in their area. By having knowledge of the obligations and information of mining company permits, the community will be able to monitor mining activities whether or not they do good mining practices, whether they have licenses or not, and whether they cause environmental damage that impacts on livelihood aspects and public health.


In Regulation No. 9 of 2019 concerning Mining in the NTB Province, it has provided space for community participation, especially related to Protection, Development and Community Empowerment, and Local Business Development. In fact, Article 52 Paragraph 1 has explicitly stated that people directly affected by the mining business activities are entitled to receive appropriate compensation or can file a lawsuit with the court. This is kind of fresh air for the community and for improving mining governance in NTB. This regulation creates and provides space for good collaboration between the government and the community in mining supervision in NTB Province.


To encourage active community participation in supervising mining activities, on November 21, 2019, PWYP Indonesia together with SOMASI NTB held a training activity related to the importance of community participation in monitoring mining activities as well as understanding monitoring instruments and exchanging experiences with the Kendeng community who also already have a lot of experience in monitoring mining activities. This activity was attended by at least the community from four villages around the mine, namely Sekotong Village, Taman Ayu, Peringga Rata, and Narmada.


Dwi Arie Santo, Coordinator of SOMASI NTB stated that community participation in mining supervision is very important, because in addition to the community’s rights, this is guaranteed in the law, the community and the surrounding environment are closest to the impact of mining activities. “If not us and the people around the mine who care and are moved to carry out mining monitoring and supervision, then who will? Even though the negative impact of the rampant illegal mining in NTB has been seen and felt by the community”, said Aris.


Ali Muttohar, representative of the Kendeng Mountains Concerned Community Network (JMPPK), who was come in to share experiences related to the strategy and monitoring mining activities in Kendeng, also shared knowledge related to the monitoring instruments that have been used by residents in Kendeng.


“Me and the community are monitoring the mining activities in Kendeng using the KoboCollect application. This application has been quite helpful to us in providing monitoring location points that we do because it already uses GPS, so that if we find that there are violations of mining activities, the point of violation will be clear by using this application, “said Ali Muttohar, who is familiarly called” Nopet “.


The response of the participants in the exercise was very enthusiastic, especially hearing stories of experiences from the Kendeng community in fighting for community and environmental rights in the Kendeng Mountains, as well as experience in monitoring mining activities using applications.


Meliana Lumbantoruan, Program Manager of PWYP Indonesia, said that the community does not need to worry and be afraid in monitoring and supervising mining activities, because by law community rights are guaranteed and from NTB Provincial Regulation No. 9 of 2019 it has also been clearly stated that communities are encouraged to participate in mining supervision. “We will convey the results of community monitoring and supervision to relevant parties, in order to be able to take concrete actions and policies to improve mining governance in the NTB Province,” Meliana continued.


The participants of this training are expected to be able and willing to conduct mining monitoring and supervision in their respective regions and villages with the knowledge they have gained from this training. As a follow-up to the implementation of this training, a regular meeting of community members will be held in the future to discuss findings and monitoring, and share experiences, obstacles and challenges faced. It is hoped that the findings of this community can help the NTB Provincial Government to improve mining governance, environmental sustainability and improve the quality of life of the communities around the mine. (ML)