Andi Hajramurni, The Jakarta Post, Makassar
Mamuju regency is the provincial capital of West Sulawesi, but poor infrastructure means isolation and poverty for people living there.
The regency's airport and port do not meet national standards while the number of roads and bridges is limited, leaving 45 percent of 8,000-square-kilometer Mamuju trailing behind other regencies in terms of development.
While rich in natural resources -- marine-based, mining, farming and forestry -- some 45 percent of the regency's population of 300,000 still live below the poverty line.
Mamuju Regent Suhardi Duka acknowledged that limited infrastructure, in particular a shortage of roads and bridges, was responsible for the high poverty rate in the regency.
He said poor infrastructure prevented village-dwellers in coastal and mountainous areas from selling their products.
Those regions -- reached only on foot or by horse after a journey of several days -- also suffered in terms of education and health care.
"We have determined to prioritize infrastructure development and improve accessibility, so people can leave their isolation," Suhardi told The Jakarta Post in Makassar, South Sulawesi. He said the regency had rich natural resources.
In the marine sector, fish and seaweed is at approximately 60,000 tons annually.
In agriculture, the regency has some 23,00 hectares of rice fields, 60,000 hectares of cacao and some 20,000 hectares under palm oil production, as well as corn and oranges.
In mining, Mamuju has untouched coal, iron and gold resources.
The regency also has some 500,000 hectares of forest -- both productive and protected.
However, poor infrastructure in the regency means that these resources can't be exploited, because residents aren't able to get their products to market.
For example, products marked for export must pass through Makassar, as Mamuju's port and airport are sub-standard.
The regency has allocated Rp 250 billion for a two-year road and bridge construction plan, to begin in 2007.
This year, the regency budget is Rp 450 billion, of which only Rp 14 billion derives from revenue. Low revenue is also blamed on poor infrastructure.
Apart from a lack of roads and bridges, many parts of the regency still don't have electricity.
Even in the city center, only 20 to 30 percent of residents are tied to the grid of state electricity company, Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN). The others are left in the dark.
"We still have to do many things to develop Mamuju, especially since it is a provincial capital.
"It might take five to eight years for the regency to catch up with development progress (elsewhere)," Suhardi said.
While working to improve infrastructure, the regency's administration is also trying to speed up human resource development.
Currently, the regency makes education -- from kindergarten to senior high school -- and health services -- from the community health centers up to grade three hospitals -- available free of charge.
Better welfare, health services and education are three basic rights of residents that the government has to provide.
"Infrastructure development, as well as free education and health services should be done in an integrated way to reach the goals." -- JP
“.. Nuclear Power Revealed
So let me tell you what else they did. They just showed you what's wrong with nuclear power. "Safe to the maximum," they said. "Our devices are strong and cannot fail." But they did. They are no match for Gaia.
It seems that for more than 20 years, every single time we sit in the chair and speak of electric power, we tell you that hundreds of thousands of tons of push/pull energy on a regular schedule is available to you. It is moon-driven, forever. It can make all of the electricity for all of the cities on your planet, no matter how much you use. There's no environmental impact at all. Use the power of the tides, the oceans, the waves in clever ways. Use them in a bigger way than any designer has ever put together yet, to power your cities. The largest cities on your planet are on the coasts, and that's where the power source is. Hydro is the answer. It's not dangerous. You've ignored it because it seems harder to engineer and it's not in a controlled environment. Yet, you've chosen to build one of the most complex and dangerous steam engines on Earth - nuclear power.
We also have indicated that all you have to do is dig down deep enough and the planet will give you heat. It's right below the surface, not too far away all the time. You'll have a Gaia steam engine that way, too. There's no danger at all and you don't have to dig that far. All you have to do is heat fluid, and there are some fluids that boil far faster than water. So we say it again and again. Maybe this will show you what's wrong with what you've been doing, and this will turn the attitudes of your science to create something so beautiful and so powerful for your grandchildren. Why do you think you were given the moon? Now you know.
This benevolent Universe gave you an astral body that allows the waters in your ocean to push and pull and push on the most regular schedule of anything you know of. Yet there you sit enjoying just looking at it instead of using it. It could be enormous, free energy forever, ready to be converted when you design the methods of capturing it. It's time. …”
Monday, November 19, 2007
Infrastructure key to Mamuju's progress
Andi Hajramurni, The Jakarta Post, Makassar