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Strongest resistance to new bylaw will come from the poor

Detik.com - September 12, 2007

Andi Saputra, Jakarta – The poor will be the ones who will put up the strongest resistance to the new bylaw on public order. The Jakarta Poor People's Alliance (ARM), which is made up of scores of non-government organisations from across Greater Jakarta is calling for the bylaw to be revoked.

They are opposing the bylaw that will prohibit people from begging and those giving money to beggars. Those who violate the law will be subject to fines of between 100,000 to 20 million rupiah.

According to ARM coordinator Irianto Indah Susilo from the Legal Aid Foundation Association of Indonesian Women for Justice (LBH APIK), the bylaw will close access by poor residents to economic sectors to improve their standard of living.

"The bylaw also conflicts with Law No. 39/1999 on Human Rights which regulates resident's standard of living. Based on these various consideration, ARM is calling on the Jakarta government to revoke the law", said Susilo at the offices of the Jakarta Legal Aid Foundation on Jl. Mendut 3 in Central Jakarta on Wednesday September 12.

Susilo added that the bylaw will in fact provide more freedom and opportunities for the provincial government to commit acts of violence and persecution against the poor as has so often been demonstrated by the civil service police. "So we are calling on all elements of society to oppose the bylaw", said Susilo. (ptr/nrl)

[Translated by James Balowski.]