When a Historic School Altered into a Mall

Students of SMA 4 Pematang Siantar found themselves cannot enter their school anymore as the city government fenced the school. Clash between students, alumni, and school committee against the policemen was inexorable. (Photo:Politikana.com)

By Irfan Nugroho
SMA 4 Pematang Siantar stands in the heart of Pematang Siantar City, North Sumatra Province, Indonesia. The school is the most favourite one as a number of outstanding figures from the province have been produced by the school.

SMA 4 Pematang Siantar is likewise a worth visiting tourist destination, especially for those who love historic tourism. The school’s buildings are the historic remnants of the Dutch colonials that built the school in 1921.

Unfortunately, the historic school of SMA 4 Pematang Siantar will be altered into a mall and shopping center by the oppressive city government of Pematang Siantar under the command of the city’s mayor, RE Siahaan.

Three-day fierce protest confronting the school’s students, committee, and alumni against the local policemen was inexorable. When they were allowed to enter the school, no school’s resources were available at the school no more.

The school’s students and teachers do not want to move to the new temporary buildings. Consequently, the school’s headmaster and 10 teachers were transferred to remote areas by the city government. Worse, after three weeks of fierce protest, there is no real action from the central government.

I tried to make an investigation over the fraud land swap deal through the Google. This time, I want to let you know a brief chronology of the land swap carried out by the city government of Pematang Siantar and a private institution namely Detis Sari Indah (DSI) Limited.

Dated back to December 20, 2009, Hermanto, the commissioner of Detis Sari Indah (DSI) Ltd., sent a letter number 14/DSI-05 to the city government of Pematang Siantar. The letter is a proposal of land swap deal between DSI Ltd. and the city government.

The letter got response from the city government that later on issued a letter number 050/4353/VI/2006 addressed to the city’s Teaching and Education Department and the school’s committee about the continuation of teaching and learning activities at the school.

The DSI Ltd. viewed that response was not enough and clear. DSI Ltd. then posted another letter number 15/DSI-06 to the city government. The second letter asked more clear action and response from the city government about the proposal of land swap deal, in which DSI Ltd. will use the the school’s land as a hotel, shopping center, and a mall.

The proposal got ‘amen’ from the city government later on. The city’s House of Representative issued a letter number 425/4D55/DPRD/IV/2007 on April 17, 2007.

Through the letter, it means that DSI Ltd. is allowed to use the school’s land for a hotel, shopping center, and a mall as long as the DSI Ltd. is capable of paying IDR 34,956,967,000 (353,128 US$) to the city government.

The letter alone was issued without any approval from the President of Republic of Indonesia. Likewise, the procedure of such a lad swap deal has actually breached the mechanism that has been set as such by the Ministry of Treasury of Republic of Indonesia.

According to the state and legal mechanism of land swap deal, the proposal of land swap deal should not come out of initiative from private institution. A land swap deal between state and private institution should come out from state first, not from the private institution one.

When found as so, the mayor of Pematang Siantar City, RE Siahaan, and the Director of DSI Ld., Johny, signed a memorandum of understanding saying that three office buildings of DSI Ltd. may be used as a temporary school building of SMA 4 Pematang Siantar.

July 10, 2009 – when the school’s students were having their two-week vacation, a number of policemen entered the school and threw the school’s chairs and tables into a rubbish truck. The school’s facilities were going to be moved to the DSI Ltd.’s office buildings.

A number of policemen were rented by the city government of Pematang Siantar to guard the school as hundreds of students protested against the land swap deal (Photo: Riswanef.Wordpress.com)

July 13, 2009 – the first day school after two-week vacation, the school’s students found themselves cannot enter their school anymore. The entrance gate was locked as the school was guarded by a number of policemen rented by the DSI Ltd. and the city government under command of the city’s mayor, RE Siahaan.

Since that day, the school’s students and alumni, backed by non-governmental groups and residents, had been trying to enter the school. Clash between the protesters and the policemen were unavoidable. Fortunately, the school’s students could tore down the school’s fence and enter the school on July 16, 2009.

No student was arrested by the city’s police station following the three-day protest. They don’t want to move to the temporary school’s building at the DSI Ltd.’s office buildings that is located too far away.

Unfortunately, the school’s headmaster and 10 teachers were transferred to remote areas by the city government. The school’s students then are left neglected. They accomplish the teaching and learning activities with no chairs and tables and other school’s facilities.

Amidst the media’s over-exposure on the Jakarta Bombing, the land swap case gets only little attention from the public. All focus of attention are now only at the Jakarta Bombing and the conspiracy theory behind it.

There is no real action and response from the central government of Indonesia to find the solution over the future of the historic school of SMA 4 Pematang Siantar so far.

Only on July 30, 2009 was there a meeting of North Sumatra Province’s House of Representative discussing the land swap deal. The meeting’s result is to summon the city government of Pematang Siantar to return the school’s facilities to the old building.

RE Siahaan alone was actually invited to attend the meeting with the provincial House of Representative, but he refused to do so. Many non-governmental institutions concerned with education call for halt of the land swap deal but the mayor of Pematang Siantar keep on his stance to alter the historic school of SMA 4 Pematang Siantar into hotel and mall.
Finally, further action from the central government is badly needed.

33 komentar:

  1. Amidst the media’s over-exposure on the Jakarta Bombing, the land swap case involving SMA 4 Pematang Siantar, DSI Ltd. and the city government of Pematang Siantar gets only little attention from the public. All focus of attention are now only at the Jakarta Bombing and the conspiracy theory behind it. Many non-governmental institutions concerned with education call for halt of the land swap deal but the mayor of Pematang Siantar keep on his stance to alter the historic school of SMA 4 Pematang Siantar into hotel and mall.

    ReplyDelete
  2. wah,... sekolah kok ditutup... keterlaluan..

    ReplyDelete
  3. oia..ini yang lagi heboh itu
    kasian masak baru awal sekolah dah ditutup.
    pemkotnya ga becus tuh
    pasti ada apa2.

    Is this wat they call education for free..??
    Study without Building...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Those government guys aren't worthy for their job. I wonder Where were they went to school before

    ReplyDelete
  5. hmmmmm.... kok bisa gitu yah....

    ReplyDelete
  6. Tega bener sie....
    Apa hanya karena uang...
    segala hal dapat di halalkan....
    Kalo di pikir akal sehat n hati nurani yg bersih
    gak akan mungkin ini terjadi....
    Anak Indonesia dituntut untuk terus maju...
    tapi.....gak bs deh aku luapin perasaan emosi aku di sini...!!!!!!!!!!!!


    Diary Osi

    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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    Trims bro atas artikelnya.

    ReplyDelete
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    aku suka foto SMU nya... keren...

    happy blogging! see u on my blog.
    -Desti Hamster Land-

    ReplyDelete
  15. ya ampun,....

    sekolah kan tempat menuntut ilmu,... katanya wajib belajar sembilan tahun, biar mutu pendidikan di Indonesia maju,..???

    ini knp malah ditutup????

    gmn sih????

    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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