Postscript to Boggler
I think the following comment about the explosion of the mains gas pipe running through the volcanic mudflow at Sidoarjo should be published openly, if only because this information backs up and adds another complexion to the mode (lack?) of thinking which seems all-pervasive here.Miner wrote
on the 26th :Halliburton warned them months ago (when it had already dropped a foot). The American embassy warned them. Engineers warned them. Nothing was done due to the perceived costs of moving it. So, it was left there.
SBY did tell Bakrie that if it went he would hold him personally responsible.
(NB. Bakrie has so far held on to his position, as Minister of Social Welfare (sic
= sick joke?) because he bankrolled SBY for the final push towards the presidency.)Times have changed. Watch the news as the East Java government is under pressure from Bakrie and SBY and are now considering bailing out Lapindo.
Except that on the 28th, VP Kalla said (source: Jakarta Post)
that the Bakrie family, still
owners of Lapindo Brantas which has 50% of the gas block, and the Panigoro family, 50.7% owners of Medco Energi Internasional which has 32% of the block, will be responsible for paying compensation to the (currently) 12,000 displaced residents and the industries and the relocation of the now inoperable Perong-Gempol toll road and ....
The latter is no problem. As Kalla said, "Spending Rp.1.5 billion is nothing for the families and I am sure of their financial capacity to relocate the turnpike
But what about the 1.5 billion dollars
for the other costs?
Ah, now that?s where it?s starting to get interesting. By all accounts on the gossip grapevine, the Bakrie Brothers are trying to squeeze extra monies out of their other, extensive, interests. These include shopping malls whose tenants may no longer be able to afford the extra costs they're being billed. These tenants are understandably somewhat reticent to step forward publicly and state their predicament.
Kalla also said, "The Bakrie and Panigoro families are respected and have true nationalism
That's good to know, but hardly relevant I would have thought. After all, the Bakrie clan did try to offload their responsibilities to a company, Freehold Group Ltd, registered in the Cayman Islands. However, Freehold have now pulled out of the deal citing "the controversy surrounding the plan
Can't say I blame them.