Jokowi urged to deal with Jakarta pollution after court's clean air ruling

Sinar Harapan – November 18, 2023
Image of Jakarta's polluted skyline – October 1, 2023 (CNN)

Banjar Chaeruddin – The City and Universe Clean Air Initiative Coalition (Ibukota) is asking President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to immediately implement the court ruling on improving air quality in Jakarta and its surrounding areas after the Supreme Court (MA) rejected a cassation appeal.

The Ibukota Coalition said it appreciated the Supreme Court's ruling on the appeal submitted by Widodo and Environment and Forestry Minister (LHK) Siti Nurbaya Bakar in a class action lawsuit on air pollution.

"We firmly demand that the president and officials who are the defendants [in the case] stop using legal efforts to delay their legal obligations", Jakarta Legal Aid Foundation (LBH) Director Citra Referandum said in a written statement on Friday November 17.

"The rejection of the government's cassation appeal by the MK is a victory not just for the plaintiffs, but also a victory for all citizens, especially for vulnerable groups who are currently struggling to get clean air. The government should implement the legal order and its constitutional obligations", said Khalisah Khalid, one the plaintiffs in the case as quoted by

The Ibukota Coalition said that the original lawsuit was filed some time ago as a class action suit or CLS on July 4, 2019. In the ruling read out on September 16, 2021 on case Number 374/Pdt.G/LH/2019, the judges at the Central Jakarta District Court granted part of the lawsuit.

The judges declared that Defendant I (President Joko Widodo), Defendant II (the Minister of Environment and Forestry), Defendant III (the Minister of Home Affairs), Defendant IV (the Minister of Health) and Defendant V (the Jakarta Governor) had broken the law.

Two of the defendants however, namely Widodo and Bakar, filed an appeal against the residents' lawsuit on their failure to deal with air pollution in Jakarta.

The cassation appeal was submitted by Adam Hasan Saputra representing the President of the Republic of Indonesia on January 20, 2023. Bakar meanwhile had submitted an earlier appeal on January 13, 2023.

In its ruling, the Supreme Court rejected the appeal by Widodo and Bakar. "Injunction ruling: to reject the cessation appeals I and II", read the decision on the Supreme Court clerk's website.

In its ruling, the Supreme Court judges declared that the government was guilty of not fulfilling the right to a clean and healthy environment in the Jakarta area.

This cassation case was registered as Number 2560 K/PDT/2023. Sitting as presiding judge in the case was Takdir Rahmadi with panel members Panji Widagdo and Lucas Prakoso.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "MA Tolak Kasasi Jokowi, Koalisi IBUKOTA Minta Pemerintah Segera Perbaiki Kulitas Udara di Jakarta".]