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 City Claims Win as Residents Agree to Relocate for Ciliwung Spillway Project

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BerichtOnderwerp: City Claims Win as Residents Agree to Relocate for Ciliwung Spillway Project   zo 4 okt 2015 - 23:26

The Jakarta Globe, Oct 4 2015

Jakarta. Jakarta administration can slowly claim victory over a battle with local residents refusing to be evicted from their homes, which stood along the way of the construction of a spillway for Jakarta’s flood-prone Ciliwung River.

According to Budi Setiawan, the sub-district head of Jatinegara, East Jakarta, as many as 74 families living in Bidara Cina village, have agreed to take part in a relocation program in which they will be moved to cheap apartment building, known as Rusun, at Cibesel (Cipinang Besar Selatan) in East Jakarta.

These families, he said, have participated in a draw to secure a cheap apartment and some will move within a week.

"By plan, the families must move to the Rusun at the latest by two weeks after they receive the key [to the unit]. The residents asked for one month, but it's too long. That's why we will help to speed it up, if they want to move we have provided trucks [to transport belongings]," Budi said.

Previously, the plan was met with protests, constraining the government's plan to acquire the land for the spillway, which will channel excess water from the Ciliwung to the East Flood Canal.

Residents of the area have long opposed the project on the grounds that the compensation offered by the government — new apartments in a public housing block — is insufficient.

The work in Bidara Cina area is part of a Rp 429 billion ($29 million) project for the 1.27-kilometer spillway. The government has commenced part of the work in February and the entire project is scheduled to be completed in December, barring any obstacles.

Fikri Abdurrahman, an official with the Public Works and Housing Ministry, said last month that the government plans to continue the project that will pass over Bidara Cina in November.

A resident of Bidara Cina said he and his family is moving to the Rusun, despite reservations that the unit in Cibesel Rusun is "too small" for his family's needs.

He said the unit, 30 square meters, consisting of a living room, two bedrooms, a bathroom, pantry and small balcony to hang and dry clothing is inadequate.

"It can't be said enough, but what else we can do, it's still better than looking out for a rent house, it could be more expensive and difficult," he said.

The government has urged residents to assist in razing their former homes, adding they can sell anything valuable from within the buildings' structure.

"f they do it right, probably they can get up to Rp 10 million to Rp 15 million," from selling the building materials, said the Jatinegara subdistrict head Budi.

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