Faculty of Cultural Studies

Universitas Brawijaya

Eleven-Year Bitter Memory of Lapindo Mudflow Disaster

24-May-2017 admin Warta FIB

Lapindo Mudflow disaster has left an unpleasant memory for the citizens of Sidoarjo. It is more than a decade; this disaster becomes an unforgettable bitter history. The victims have to lose their homes and properties, so that they have to live in the refugee camps for about two years. What happened to them eleven years ago is still recorded obviously in their mind. This makes a group of students from the Study Program of Anthropology, Faculty of Cultural Studies University of Brawijaya (FCS-UB): Miftakhul Iftita, Helmawati, Luaiyibni Fatimatus Zuhra, and Gilang Mahardika interested in studying how the situation of those victims in current days, what changes occur and how their new socio-cultural conditions are. The focus of this research is the victims of Lapindo mudflow disaster in Renokenongo.

Lapindo mudflow disaster was triggerred by oil drilling in Renokenongo village, Porong, 2006. Due to the negligence of PT Lapindo Brantas, the mud bursted, this was only one meter at the beginning. Afterward, it grew larger and eventually drowned nine nearby villages. As a result, Lapindo mudflow victims must be relocated to Pasar Baru Porong. The compensation money provided by PT Lapindo Brantas had been granted in several terms since 2008 for the victims to find new permanent residences. Some victims installed or rented a house, or built hovel. The compensation payment was finally completed in 2015 during the reign of President Joko Widodo.

The pupils of Renokenongo now live in a more decent place. Some settled houses in other villages and some live in Renojoyo. Renojoyo thus becomes a “mini” Renokenongo that is inhabited by Lapindo mudflow victims. Because of the incident many years ago, they had to suffer in the refugee camp. Moreover, their children began to suffer from respiratory illness due to the smell of mud smoke or typhoid due to lack of nutrient intake. The victims are not able to express the sufferings, but their facial expressions depict how painful they suffer, thus it becomes an unforgettable memory. [PKM/DT/MSH/PSIK FIB]

Renojoyo Housing (the relocation of victims of Renokenongo society), Kedungsolo Village, Porong, Sidoarjo

The Monument of Lapindo Mud