Megawati Soekarnoputri's Memory Of Prohibiting Sea Sand Exports

JAKARTA - The power of Suharto and the New Order (Orba) increases economic growth in no twofold. All kinds of things can be 'cheated' as a promising business. Sea sand exports, for example. The business was able to make Indonesia and Suharto's kroni make a big profit.

However, the damage to the acute environment became an expensive price to pay. The problem was then handled in the era of Megawati Soekarnoputri's government. Putri Soekarno was transformed into a savior. He then banned sea sand export activities.

In terms of increasing economic growth, Suharto is good at it. He dared to open a large investment tap for entrepreneurs. From within and outside the country. Who has large capital will be prioritized to invest.

If necessary and necessary, the New Order is ready to use military force to secure investment. This step is in fact effective. Indonesia's economic growth is increasing. New Orders also continue to'sell' Indonesia's natural resource potential to many parties.

Marine sand mining and export permits, for example. The permit was granted on a large scale to employers. The New Order gives permission to those who are members of a consortium led by the Suharto craft or part of the Cendana Family itself.

The mining and sand exports were carried out on a large scale. The sands are dredged with illegally dredged vessels sometimes it is also illegal' to be sold to Singapore and countries that want to reclamation within years.

The spirit of profit made the government close its eyes with the damage to the existing environment. Because, the only thing that New Order thinks about is income and big profits for Soeharto's kroni. This condition continued even though Suharto and New Order collapsed. Mines and sea sand exports are always considered as money fields that cannot stop operating.

"But basically, the oligarchic system relies on the same three pillars or feet, namely the palace, Tangsi, and the ruling party. Under President BJ Habibie, whose family businesses are very close to the Suharto family business, Habibie's family quickly tried to shift the role of Suharto's family in this oligarchy business expansion, as soon as Habibie obtained the presidential power stick."

"This, for example, can be seen from the main actors in the marine sand exporting consortium from the Riau Islands to Singapore. In the Suharto era, the consortium was led by Tommy Suharto and Anthony Salim, in the Habibie era, the position of the billion rupiah-valued business leader shifted to the Tharig Kemal Habibie," said George Junus Aditjondro in the book Presidential Corruption (2006).

Demand for sea sand is increasing day by day. All because many countries want to perpetuate reclamation to expand their territory. The government is starting to be in a dilemma. On the one hand, the economic potential of sand mining is quite high. The other side of sand mining leaves behind problems that are no less vital.

Indonesia is starting to feel ecological losses. Several small islands around the Riau Islands have sunk. This fact makes coastal ecosystems badly damaged. Moreover, fishermen who usually seek sustenance in the sea cannot actually enjoy marine products due to damaged ecosystems.

A series of problems were later passed on to the era of Megawati Soekarnoputri's government. The first female Indonesian president agreed that many marine sand mining carried many disaster.

He considers the export of sea sand to be much worse than benefits. Other countries can build, while Indonesia is actually slumped due to environmental damage.

Megawati also did not want to delay immediately to temporarily stop the mining and export of sea sand. Megawati issued the decision through Presidential Instruction (Inpres) No. 3 of 2002. He asked his staff to supervise and control the affairs of mining and sand exports.

The decision to temporarily suspend it was seriously followed up the following year. Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Rokhmin Dahriri fully supports this. Likewise with the Minister of Industry and Trade of Indonesia, Rini Mariani Soemarno. Rini even issued a Decree of the Minister of Industry and Trade Number 117/MPP/2/2003 concerning the Temporary Termination of Sea Sand Exports.

The letter became the beginning of Indonesia stopping exporting sea sand to countries. The decision then took effect for a long time. Alias until he was 20 years old. Because, after that, the 7th President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo (Jokowi) allowed the export of sea sand in 2023.

The development of these elements can be a reflection that the marine and fisheries sector can be the foundation and hope of life for some Indonesian people. In addition, it can also be an indication that the economic activity of this sector will become a pillar of Indonesia's economic development in the future.

"Moreover, since the establishment of the Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Service (DKP), there have been several important policies that have been produced. Such as the Fisheries Law, island regulations and legislation, and coastal areas, temporary closure of sea sand businesses, as well as arrangement of underwater treasure," explained the Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries from 2001-2004, Rokhmin Dahriri in the book The Brave Lady: Megawati in the Gotong Royong Cabinet Notes (2019).