Indonesia Finally Withdraws Komodo From N7WN

Sunday, 01 April 2012 12:21

The Komodo National Park was finally withdrawn from the selection of the ‘New Seven Wonder of Nature’, because of the obscurity of the organizing committee...

Towards the Indonesian Independence Day celebration, the government through the Ministry of Culture and Tourism (Kemenbudpar, Ind.) has withdrawn the Komodo National Park (KNP) as the finalist of the New Seven Wonders of Nature (N7WN) because of the non-transparent, unprofessional and inconsistency of the New Seven Wonders Foundation organizing committee towards the event.

“We’ve broken up the relations; I have to defend this country,” said Indonesian Minister of Culture and Tourism, Jero Wacik at the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, on Monday (8/15).
According to him, when the New Seven Wonders Foundation would like to vote for some new wonders across the globe, Indonesia was interested to join because the idea seemed very good. Indonesia, through Kemenbudpar has registered three places at once, that were the Lake Toba, the Krakatau, and the Komodo National Park (KNP).

The registration fee was USD 199 and the one that has passed was only the KNP. KNP has made it into the 28 nominations by setting aside 440 nominees from 220 countries. Assessments were based on the online voting results. Above the achievements, the Ministry of Cultural and Tourism has questioned of how much the KNP has gotten support. Unfortunately, the question did not get a response from the committee, yet they have continued to promote the KNP as a nominee of N7WN.

To the extent, they have even mobilized various circles to support the KNP to be one of the N7WN. In fact, state officials have also provided support.

“Mr. Vice President himself has provided direct support from the island of Komodo,” said Wacik. N7WN announcement itself will take place on November 11, 2011. During the process towards the final stage, the Ministry has always monitored the progress.

They have always asked how much support that the KNP has got. Understandably, from 28 nominees they will be squeezed into 7, which entitled to the ‘New Seven Wonders of Nature’. But, they still haven’t got a response from the organizing committee. Suspicions began to appear and they tried to come to the committee’s adress in Switzerland. The result was quite surprising; it turned out to be a museum. The Ministry then sent an email to the committee. The email finally got an answer, but there were indications of peculiarities because the committee’s domain was of the UK instead of Switzerland.

Not only that, other irregularities started sticking when the committee selected Indonesia as the host for the final event. The Ministry of Culture and Tourism as the official supporting committee was required to deposit USD 10 million, plus USD 35 million for the venue. The total expenditure was about USD 45 million or equivalent to IDR 400 billion.

“I expressed my regards to your appointment, but we will remain involved until the final, though we are not to be the host of the final event,” said Wacik.
As a result, KNP was dropped from one of the N7WN finalists. Pros and cons started popping up, and the Ministry then appointed their lawyer from Lubis, Santosa & Maulana Law Firm for the incident. “That is particularly violation of universal law,” said the representative of the Lubis, Santosa and Maulana Law Firm, Julius Singara. Julius said, the legal steps taken will be first discussed with the Ministry.

“We will consider first, whether to wait on this obscure committee or else. Because, it will take a lot of funds due to their address that is in Switzerland. Better use the funds for our cultural promotion,” said Julius.

Meanwhile Wacik said, regarding the legal issues, they will be submitted to the Law Firm headed by the well-known lawyer, Todung Mulya Lubis.

In addition to Indonesia, several countries have also declared their official resignations, such as the Maldives. In the opinion of the Marketing Director of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Sapta Nirwandar, what have the committee done was an act of arbitrary. The Chairman of MURI (Indonesian Record Museum, ed.) Jaya Suprana confirmed, the committee’s act was an act of utilizing the awards industry.

“We don’t need to be dazzled, and always get oriented to the foreign institution. Better we respect our own people, so for that, MURI declares the KNP is one of the wonders of the world that is second to none,” said Jaya Suprana.

Although has been withdrawn from the N7WN program, the KNP would still be promoted. In fact, it already has a brand of The New Real Wonder of the World. KNP itself, since 1991 has received the World Heritage status by UNESCO, the UN official institution. (Sbh) (ms)