NEA obtains court warrant against director of Indonesia firm who failed to aid with haze investigations

The director failed to attend an interview with the National Environment Agency (NEA) after he was served a legal notice. He could be detained the next time he is in Singapore.
Channel NewsAsia 11 May 16;

SINGAPORE: The National Environment Agency (NEA) has obtained a court warrant against the director of one of the Indonesian firms linked to illegal forest fires that caused the haze in 2015.

The court warrant was obtained after the director failed to heed the Transboundary Haze Pollution Act (THPA) notice served to him by the NEA when he was in Singapore. The notice required him to attend an interview with the NEA in relation to ongoing investigations, but he failed to turn up.

“NEA has obtained a court warrant to secure his attendance when he next enters Singapore, which is in accordance with the legal provisions of the THPA. This means that if the director enters Singapore, he can be detained by NEA officers for the purpose of investigations,” an NEA spokesperson said in a statement on Wednesday (May 11). The director and the company have not been named.

In September and October 2015, peatland fires caused the region to be cloaked in haze. Errant pulp and paper companies which started fires were believed to be responsible.

In his Committee of Supply speech on April 12, Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli said that notices have been issued to six Indonesia-based companies. The companies were required to take immediate measures to mitigate fires and develop plans to prevent their recurrence.

Four companies did not respond, including the one whose firm missed the interview. Mr Masagos has promised that the government will "take what steps we can to enforce the THPA" in his Committee of Supply speech last month.

- CNA/le


Director of Indonesian firm linked to haze faces detention when he next enters S’pore
He was a no-show for an interview with the NEA
Today Online 11 May 16;

SINGAPORE — The director of one of the Indonesian companies being looked into by the authorities over the haze could be detained the next time he enters Singapore, after he failed to turn up for an interview with the National Environment Agency (NEA).

The director, who has not been named, had been served with a Transboundary Haze Pollution Act (THPA) Notice for him to attend an interview with the NEA. But he did not turn up.

“NEA has obtained a court warrant to secure his attendance when he next enters Singapore, which is in accordance with the legal provisions of the THPA. This means that if the director enters Singapore, he can be detained by NEA officers for the purpose of investigations,” an NEA spokesperson said in a statement on Wednesday (May 11).

Singapore has issued notices to six Indonesia-based companies that started fires or let their concessions burn, and contributed to last year’s haze that blanketed Singapore and parts of the region.

Last month, Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli said the director of one of the six companies had been served with a notice to provide information on how the company is mitigating fires on its land, and allow investigators to examine how the company is implementing these measures. “Should he not return, he will have violated our law and therefore, among others, we can arrest him upon entry later than the notice on which he is supposed to return,” said Mr Masagos, who declined to name the company.


NEA obtains court warrant against director of Indonesian company with suspected haze links
Audrey Tan, The Straits Times AsiaOne 12 May 16;

SINGAPORE - A director of an Indonesian firm suspected to be linked to the region-wide haze in 2015 did not turn up for an interview with the authorities here, even though he was served a legal notice to attend it when he was in Singapore.

But the director, who has since left Singapore, may be detained if he tries to enter Singapore again.

The National Environment Agency (NEA) said on Wednesday (May 11) that it has obtained a court warrant against the director, but did not name him or his company.

"This means that if the director enters Singapore, he can be detained by NEA officers for the purpose of investigations," said a NEA spokesman, adding that the move is in accordance with Singapore's Transboundary Haze Pollution Act.

Forest and peatland fires in Indonesia, widely believed to be caused by errant pulp and paper companies, resulted in haze conditions in Singapore and the region in September and October 2015.

Since then, the NEA has given notices to six of these Indonesia-based firms, asking them to explain the steps that they are taking to put out and prevent fires on their land.

NEA's latest move comes after Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli told reporters in April that only two firms had replied.

Referring to the same director who missed the interview, Mr Masagos said the director, who is from one of the other four firms, had been served a notice to give information about his firm's move to mitigate fires on its land and prevent a repeat of last year's haze.

Indonesia protests against Singapore's move to 'interrogate' company director
On Wednesday, Singapore's National Environment Agency said it had obtained a court warrant after the director failed to heed the Transboundary Haze Pollution Act notice served to him by NEA when he was in Singapore.
Saifulbahri Ismail Channel NewsAsia 12 May 16;

JAKARTA: Indonesia has protested against Singapore’s move to "interrogate" the director of one of the Indonesian firms linked to illegal forest fires that caused the haze last year.

Spokesperson for the Indonesian Foreign Ministry, Arrmanatha Nasir, said Jakarta has issued the protest via the Indonesian embassy in Singapore.

“We urged for regulations in Singapore not to affect the good trade and cooperation ties that we have now, especially between our businesses," said Mr Arrmanatha during a weekly press briefing at the Foreign Ministry on Thursday (May 12).

On Wednesday, the National Environment Agency (NEA) said it has obtained a court warrant after the director failed to heed the Transboundary Haze Pollution Act (THPA) notice served to him by NEA when he was in Singapore.

The notice required him to attend an interview with NEA in relation to ongoing investigations, but he failed to turn up.

“NEA has obtained a court warrant to secure his attendance when he next enters Singapore, which is in accordance with the legal provisions of the THPA,” an NEA spokesperson said in a statement on Wednesday. “This means that if the director enters Singapore, he can be detained by NEA officers for the purpose of investigations.”

The director and the company have not been named.

In September and October 2015, peatland fires caused the region to be cloaked in haze. Errant pulp and paper companies which started fires were believed to be responsible.

In his Committee of Supply speech on Apr 12, Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli said that notices have been issued to six Indonesia-based companies.

The companies were required to take immediate measures to mitigate fires and develop plans to prevent their recurrence. Four companies did not respond, including the one whose firm missed the interview.

In his Committee of Supply speech, Mr Masagos promised that the Government will "take what steps we can to enforce the THPA".

- CNA/ec

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