A police line is placed on land where sacks of government humanitarian supplies are unearthed in Depok, West Java, on July 31, 2022/ (Beritasatu Photo/Joanito De Saojoao)

Delivery Firm JNE Admits Burying Gov’t Humanitarian Supplies

BY :THE JAKARTA GLOBE

AUGUST 02, 2022

Jakarta. Police on Tuesday launched an investigation into the finding of hundreds of sacks of rice carrying government marks buried near the warehouse of leading delivery company JNE Express in Depok, West Java.

The company admitted responsibility but argued they dumped the supplies for health and safety reasons.

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"We’ve learned that JNE buried the rice on November 5, 2021, and provided a written document stating that 3,675 kilograms or 289 sacks of rice for 139 families were buried," National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Ahmad Ramadhan told a news conference in Jakarta.

In 2020, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo agreed on a government humanitarian aid program for 1.9 million low-income families in Greater Jakarta, including Depok, to help them cope with the devastating economic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and JNE was one of the companies that won the contract to distribute the supplies.

The case was later handed over to the Jakarta Metropolitan Police, who immediately sent a team to the scene.

The preliminary investigation found that JNE decided to dump the rice and other supplies because they were damaged by rainwater during the delivery process from the State Logistics Agency (Bulog)’s warehouse in Jakarta to that of JNE and began to decompose.

“JNE claimed the buried rice was not consumable and that it actually belongs to them because they already compensated the government by replacing supplies with equivalent packages,” Jakarta Police spokesman Chief Comr. Endra Zulpan told Detik news website.

“Their accounts aren’t backed by any documents yet during the [initial] interrogation,” he added.

A sack of government rice is unearthed in Depok, West Java, on July 31, 2022. (Beritasatu Photo)
A sack of government rice is unearthed in Depok, West Java, on July 31, 2022. (Beritasatu Photo)

JNE Vice President of Marketing Eri Plagunadi said in a statement that the company has broken no law.

“With regards to media reports on the finding of [dumped] rice for the social program in Depok, there is no violation of any law because it was done in accordance to procedures on the handling of damaged goods,” Eri said.

A construction worker in Depok identified as Nanang Firmansyah said he was asked by JNE “a long time ago” to dig a hole for sewage dumping.

“If I had been told at that time that the hole would be used to dump supplies, I would have immediately rejected the job,” Nanang said, adding that he and a friend were paid Rp 1.5 million for the two-day work. 

The dumped rice was unearthed on Sunday after the land owner was informed by a JNE employee.

JNE has not explained why they dumped the damaged rice on the land not their own.

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