The Protest Action Against Omnibus Bill in Ternate Clobbered by Police

Rudi, a protester, was beaten by police officers.

Bekasi – Preparation of almost a hundred students to take a protest action for rejecting Omnibus Bill in front of Ternate district House of Representatives, North Maluku had repression from police. The mass gathered around in front of Makugawene monument yard, Kalamata, South Ternate. The police announced a prohibition to do not take any protest and the mass had to disperse. 

The mass were waiting for dozens of their friends who were still walking from north Ternate. They even did not start yet, then the protest action on behalf of the Mahasiswa Ternate Bergerak (MARAK) (Ternate students movement) from various student movement organisations, was immediately disperse repressively to pushed them back. 

“Hearing of appeal, we gathered for a briefing, but I was immediately arrested and dragged by few police officers, then was hit,” Rudi explained. 

The incident occurred at 12.35 WIT around. The students were chased and bombarded with water cannons, so it pushed them run. 

“(because of the beating), my knee is sore and swollen, I can not walk too long. I was kicked hard with police’s boots. My right eyelid and my lips are bleeding. I am difficult to chew when eating,” Rudi said, after he released with three protesters. 

There were three protesters who were also dragged and arrested, as at the first the police claimed to secured them at House of Representatives building which located 100 meters from Makugawene monument. The protesters also experienced the same thing, got full of bruises on the bodies. 

Dhat, told initially they ran to a warehouse near from the monument to hide, but the officers managed to see them. In the warehouse, they were beaten until one of them had a bleeding nose.

Coordinator of MARAKAslan Syarifudin, explained, the action plans was a peaceful action even though they did not have an approval from authorities since the police refused to accept notification letter from them. The police reasoned that they could not allow the demonstration to prevent of spreading and contagion of coronavirus

“If the police took a persuasive approach, it was better, but this was not, they immediately dispersed the protest and arrested us. Even though we were still waiting the other participants to tell them about what is happening,”.

“We are also afraid of the virus, we want to healthy, but the Omnibus Law is also a big threat. We have to move (to reject it),”

The protest coordinator, Adi Gipantara, also said that the march had not been carried out yet, posters and banners had not been spreaded out yet. 

“All of the march equipment has not been opened yet, we were still calling for a gathering to discuss what will we do after the police’s announcement,” he said.

The police attacked and arrested the protesters, however all protesters were finally released.

The repression made democratic situation in Indonesia worsen. It is a record how democracy is increasingly threatened.

“We will continue to reject Omnibus Law and other living space grabbing.”

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