House to discuss proposed interpelation on Lapindo disaster

06/19/07 14:43 Jakarta (ANTARA News) – The House of Representatives (DPR) at a plenary session here Tuesday decided to have a proposal for the exercise of its interpellation right on the Lapindo mudflow disaster in Sidoarjo, East Java, discussed in its Consultative Body (Bamus).

The House session made the decision after a brief discussion of the proposal forwarded to the House leadership by 130 House members last week.

The Consultative Body would set a date for inviting the government to respond to the House`s enquiry on the Lapindo mud flow disaster which has been occurring in Sidoardjo, East Java, since last year.

The proposal was handed to House Deputy Speaker Soetardjo Soerjogoeritno — who himself was one of the initiators of the interpellation — at the parliament building last Thursday (June 14).

In addition to Soerjogoeritno, other initiators included Yuddy Chrisnandy (Golkar Party), Abdullah Azwar Anas (PKB), Ade Nasution (PBR), Ario Widjanarko (PDIP), Djoko Susilo (PAN) and Yakobus Mayongpadang (PDIP).

The incessant hot mudflow has been welling up from a Lapindo Brantas Co. gas well in Sidoardjo since 2006 and inundated tens of villages. Thousands of people have been displaced and tens of schools and factories were forced to close down due to the mudflow disaster.

Soetardjo last week said he would process the proposal supported by 130 legislators in accordance with the prevailing mechanism. In line with the existing rules, at least 13 legislators were needed to initiate an enquiry over the government on a certain issue.

A previous interpellation, namely on the government`s support for UN Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 1747 against Iran`s nuclear program, was supported by a total of 285 legislators.

Soetardjo hoped that President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono would personally respond to the enquiry on the Lapindo mudflow disaster.

“It`s only asking for the government`s explanations. Don`t be afraid of the DPR (Parliament). Don`t send ministers to represent the President,” he said last week.

President Yudhoyono failed skipped the interpellation session on Iran on June 5 because he had to play host to newly elected Timor Leste President Ramos Hosta on the same day.

Due to protests from a number of legislators against the absence of the President, House Speaker Agung Laksono was forced to reschedule the interpellation session on Iran.

The President held a meeting with the House speaker and deputy speakers at the presidential palace on Monday evening (June 18) among other things to discuss a new date for the interpellation session on Iran. However, they failed to set the date.(*)

Copyright © 2007 ANTARA


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