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Bali News by Bali Update
BALI UPDATE #1032 - 13 June 2016

IN THIS UPDATE


Noblese Oblige, Donít Mess with Me!
Angry Leader of Kesiman Royal Household Hog-Ties a Denpasar Municipal Street Sweeper to a Utility Pole

An employee of the Denpasar Hygiene and Parks Department (DKP) was forcibly tied to an electrical pole for five hours by the head of the Kesminan Royal Household, AA Kusuma Wardana, on Sunday, May 29, 2016.

Reported by both NusaBali and Tribune Bali, AA Kusuma Wardana confirmed the incident in a meeting with the press at his home on Wednesday, June 8, 2016. Wardana undertook the public humiliation and forcible detention of the municipal worker, Dewa Made Roji, 64, after he awoke on May 29th to discover a full trash barrel in a corner of the Kesiman Palace (Puri Kesiman). Kusuma, also known as Tu Rah, found this strange as he said the trash produced by the Palace was minimum and should have, in any case, have been hauled away by the DKP.

When Kusuma investigated the matter, he discovered the DKP Street Sweeper who works on Jalan WR Supratman has been regularly disposing of trash in a DKP provided trash receptacle located in a corner of the Puri Kesiman grounds. Quoted by NusaBali, Kusuma said: “I asked directly, why he was throwing trash here (Puri Kesiman)? He answered that he was ordered to do so by the Satgas Sampah Keluran Kesiman (the Kesiman Trash Officers).”

Displeased with the answer of the DKP street sweeper, Tu Rah (shown) used plastic ropes to bind the man to an electrical pole. Adding: “If this is allowed, it means that the Kesiman Palace is a place to dispose of trash. It also means the Palace is rubbish.”

The humiliated DKP street sweeper was left tied to the electrical pole for nearly five hours starting from 6:30 am until 11:00 am until the chief of the DKP for Denpasar could come to the palace and personally apologize.

Continuing, Kusuma said: “The supervisor came here (Puri Kesiman) and apologized to me. So, I asked (him) why come and apologize to me? The work of the DKP is good; it helps the people. I told him there is no need to apologize to me, because the DKP did nothing wrong. I said to him: “I am obviously (considered to be) trash.’”

Apparently beyond placation, Tu Rah asked the DKP chief to bring letters appointing the Palace to the National Ministry of Culture, claiming such an appointment is meaningless if the palace does not receive the honor it deserves. 

Tu Rah said he has also tried to contact the Mayor of Denpasar, IB Rai Dharmawijaya Mantra, to enquire after those working under the Mayor’s command. “I called the Mayor, unfortunately, he (the Mayor) was out of town when I called. I do not want to condemn anyone, but only wish to teach the people that they can not dispose of their trash anywhere they want. The palace is part of our heritage,” said the former member of the Denpasar House of Representatives.

of trying the hapless DKP worker to an electrical pole received strong criticism on the social media, prompting those working for the head of the Royal Household of Kesiman to make formal complaints to the Bali Police. Kusuma told NusaBali he personally had no problems with such commentary on Social Media, but his assistants were not prepared to accept him being criticized publicly.

The chief of the DKP Denpasar, Ketut Wisada, refused to comment to the press about one of his staff being tied to an electrical power on the palace grounds for five hours. Adding when contacted by telephone on June 6th, said: “Enough. Please don’t expose this. Please, don't do it. It’s over. We have settled the matter peaceably. Don’t make a big deal about this.”

Wisada did not clarify if the peaceful settlement included an apology to the 64-year-old  DKP Street Sweeper who, by all accounts, was merely performing his duty as directred by his supervisors.


Bali is Vibrant
Bali is Vibrant

The State News Agency Antara says the head of the data and information of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPNB), Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, confirmed there was no significant property damage or casualties reported in connection with the 6.2 on the Richter Scale earthquake felt in Bali on the Thursday morning, June 9, 2016 at 11:13 am.

Sutopo said, “The earthquake was felt for three to four seconds in the area of West Sumbawa and Bali. Some people panicked and ran outside their homes.”

The epi-center of the earthquake was located at a depth of 10-kilometers, 286-kilometers southeast of West Sumbawa or 308-kilomteers southeast of Klungkung, Bali. There was no risk of a tsunami in connection with this seismic event.

The earthquake occurred along a point with the India-Australian and Eurasian Plates collide.

The earthquake, experience as two brief shakes, was felt throughout south and central parts Bali and in East Lombok.

On the same date, a smaller earthquake was felt in Bali at 9:40 am located 42-kilometers southeast of Klungkung at a dept of 10-kilomteres below sea level.

No damage or casualties have been attributed to the smaller earthquake.


A Bigger Slice of Pie in the Sky
AirAsia Wants a Bigger Foreign ownership Slice in AirAsia Indonesia

Low-cost carrier Air Asia Group CEO Tony Fernandes has said ASEAN countries, including Indonesia, should reevaluate the foreign ownership limits in place for airlines operating in the region.

Indonesian law presently limits to 49% the amount of foreign ownership for any national airline.

Fernandes, claiming more jobs would be created if foreign equity limits were lifted, said: "What is the benefit of an airline being owned 49 percent, if the people of ASEAN can benefit from full ownership?"

Fernandes has reportedly discussed his idea of expanded foreign ownership in AirAsia Indonesia by AirAsia Group with Indonesian Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro.

On June 1, 2016 Sunu Widyatmoko stepped down as the CEO of AirAsia Indonesia and was replaced by Ridzeki Tresno Wibowo. Widyatmoko reportedly left the company shortly after plans were announce to merge AirAsia Indonesia and AirAsia Extra (the long-haul subsidiary of AirAsia Indonesia) in order to meet Indonesian government capital requirements.

The Transportation Ministry has served notice on AirAsia Indonesia to get its financial house in order as its debt now exceeds its assets.


Just-in-Time Bomb Detection
Police in East Java Arrest Three Terrorists Said to be Preparing Imminent Attacks

Police in Surabaya, East Java and members of Indonesia’s elite Densus 88 anti-terrorist squad took three people into custody on Wednesday, June 8, 2016, and 12 boxes of evidence in arrests made in the Lebak Timur area of Surabaya.

According to Metrobali.com, those arrested were planning suicide terrorist attacks during the fasting month of Ramadan.

A National Police spokesperson revealed that interviews with those arrested indicated attacks were imminent during the current fasting month. Police said the terrorist would duplicate the type of attack carried out on Jalan Thamrin in Jakarta by undertaking assaults at public places and police stations.

The three terrorists were, according to police, also preparing suicide bombs for their coming attacks.

Those arrested included convicted criminals who have served time in prison for narcotic offenses, terrorist acts, assault and bank robberies.

Police also took into their possession highly explosive materials, two rifles, one revolver, ammunition, general explosives, chemicals, wiring and hand phones rigged to act as triggers for explosive devices.

Police have since detonated under controlled conditions some of the items seized in the raids and arrests.


Ocean Fatalities
High Waves Hitting Bali and Surrounding Seas Linked to 3 Deaths

Rare weather conditions and unusually high waves are causing extensive property damage and being blamed for a number of deaths in Bali.

Two tourists, part of a group of friends gathering on Padang Galak Beach in Sanur, Bali to through the ashes of a deceased friend into the ocean were swept into the sea by large waves and drowned on Thursday, June 9, 2016 at approximately 11:30 am.

Dead are Pieter Ten (68) of Hong Kong and Wong Sum Sum (68), originally from Bandung, West Java. Part of a religious group of 22, the group had left the Eden Hotel in Kuta accompanied by a local guide, I Nengah Yasa (46), and a tour leader, Febriani.

As the group was praying and preparing to spread the ashes of a deceased friend into the sea, Piter Ten and Wong Sum Sum, who were leading the service, stumbled and were swept over by large waves. The large waves presented anyone from helping the two, leaving 20 horrified friends watching the tragedy unfold before them.

Police and rescue personnel quickly recovered the tourists’ bodies a few meters away from where they fell into the sea. Rushed to the nearby Sanglah General Hospital, both were pronounced dead on arrival.

In a separate incident, a local teacher, Ni Gusti Ayu Sukaseni (57), was washed overboard and drowned on Wednesday afternoon, June 8. 2016, whilst sailing on board the Caspla Bali 3 coming from Buyuk Harbor on Nusa Penida to Bali. The boat has been sailing for about 10 minutes when it was hit by a large wave and the woman fell overboard.

As reported by NusaBali, the boat returned to Nusa Penida to disembark passengers and then joined an unsuccessful search for the missing passenger.

Police say that some 50 homes on Nusa Penida also have suffered wave damage during the past week of high seas. All the homes are located close to the shore with some used as tourist accommodation.


Cock-a-Doodle-Die
Cock Fight Referee Dies after being Attacked by a Feathered Participant

Beritabali.com reports that an attendant at a Balinese cockfight has died after being stabbed to death by one of the chickens scheduled to compete at Banjar Masem, Batur at Kintamani.

Dead is Guru Ketut Jebing (45), a native of Masem, who suffered a stab wound to his left thigh inflicted by the blade worn by a prized fighting cock on Wednesday, June 7, 2016.

On that date a cockfight was being staged at the home of Wayan Pantai to inaugurate and bless his new home.

Those attending the event say that Jebing released a fighting cock into the fight arena, only to have the chicken turn and launch an attack on him, stab his leg and presumably cut a major artery with the sharp blade attached to the bird's leg.

Jebing was rushed to the general hospital in Bangli where de died at 7:30 pm due to a massive loss of blood.


Parental Responsibility
PDIP Lawmaker Scolds Police Who Ticketed His 16-Year-Old Son and Confiscated an Unregistered Motorcycle

A tense situation has developed between an officer of the Bali Traffic Police and a member of Commission I of the Bali House of Representatives, Dewa Nyoman Rai Adi, following an incident that took place on Wednesday, June 8, 2016.

As reported by NusaBali and Suaradewata.com, the tense standoff between the Legislator and the police began after the offspring of Dewa Nyoman Rai Adi was ticketed and had his motorcycle confiscated at the entrance to Bali Mandara Toll Road.

Apparently, the unlicensed 16-year-old, Dewa Komang Derdy Anthoni, was stopped by police as he tried to enter the toll road at Nusa Dua on a route to Bali’s airport with a pillion passenger on board. When it was determined that the boy was too young to drive and lacked the needed documentation to operate a motorcycle the policeman issued a ticket and took the motorcycle into custody.

The boy then called his father who, in turn, spoke to the ticketing officer Made Arnawa. Unable to persuade the policeman to turn a blind eye, Dewa Nyoman Rai Adi reportedly told the policeman he was “crazy” for imposing a strict application of the laws.

Dewa Rai Adi who is a member of the PDIP party confirmed to NusaBali via telephone that his son, Dewa Derby, was an unlicensed 16-year-old in a Country where the minimum age to operate a vehicle is 17. He also confirmed that his Son was unable to present license plates or a registration for the motorcycle he was driving at the time.

The police brought the boy to the entrance booth of the toll road. The legislator father of the boy complained to the press that he considered it “crazy” that the police would simply drop the boy on the side of the road near the toll road’s entrance. Objecting to the boy’s abandonment on the side of the road, Dewa Rai Adi asked: “If my son went missing or something happened, who will take responsibility?”

Ironically ignoring the lack of responsibility reflected in allowing a child to operate an unregistered vehicle on the public roadway, the North Bali lawmaker, continued: “If my child was kidnapped or went missing, who would be responsible. This is really unethical. As (police) officers they must serve and protect the public. My child was treated like an orphan with no parents.”

Dewa Rai said he accepted the ticket for his son and the confiscation of the motorcycle as a necessary "shock therapy" for breaking the law, but could not accept the fact that the police abandoned the boy on the side of a busy road.

Dewa Rai did not clarify with the press if he was aware in advance of his Son’s illegal operation of an unregistered vehicle and to what extent he would bear personal responsibility if an accident had occurred as the result of his Son’s blatant disregard for the law.

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The Missing Mozaic
Mozaic Beach Club on Batubelig Beach in Seminyak Closes its Doors

On June 2, 2016, The Mozaic Beach Blub - a Seminyak Beach and Bali Culinary icon – closed its door after four years of business.

The website for the fine-dining landmarks posted an announcement On June 2, 2016, that said, “We regret to advise you that effective as of today, the Mozaic Beach Club, Jalan Pantai Batu Belig, is no longer operating.” Adding, “The decision to close was not an easy one, and we regret any inconvenience this may cause you.”


hed in mid-2012, The Mozaic Beach Club opened on Batubelig Beach following on from the phenomenal success of the Mozaic Restaurant Gastonomique in Ubud.

Offering beach and poolside dining or a more formal dining room in its main building, the elegant restaurant was a culinary stage for the formidable cooking talents of its founders: Chris Salans and James Ephraim.

Those disappointed by the closure of The Mozaic Beach Club will find some solace in the continuing operation of The Mozaic Restaurant Gastronomique and Spice by Chris Salans – both in Ubud, Central Bali.


Australians Love Bali Best
Indonesia Now Australianís Most Preferred Overseas Destination

Beritabali.com reports that the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has released figures for April 2016 that show Indonesia has displaced New Zealand as the most-preferred overseas holiday destination for Australians.

Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism, Arief Yahya, linked his Country’s ability to displace New Zealand at the top of the list for Australian holidaymakers to the granting of visa-free visits for Australian passport holders.

In March 2016, New Zealand still held the top post with 123,600 Australian visitors coming to its shores in a month in which only 97,300 Australians visited Indonesia.

But, by April 2016, the situation had changed. Visitor totals to New Zealand from Australia declined to 97,300 while Australians traveling to Indonesia increased to 105,500.

Australian arrivals to Bali in April totaled 91.250 – an increase of 19.1% over April 2015. For the first four months of 2016, Australian arrivals at 334,529 are up 6.9% representing a total 22.74% market share of all foreign arrivals.

Related Article

Bali by the Numbers: April Arrivals to Bali Up 21.3% 


Indefinite Delay in Return to Bali
Bali Expat Restaurateur Arrested in Bangkok with Half-Kilogram of Cocaine

Mirror.co.uk and Bangkok Post are both reporting that Matthew Kevin O’Neill, identified as the owner of Thai Gardens Restaurant in Bali, has been arrested in Thailand in possession of a half-kilogram of cocaine in his backpack.

O’Neil (40), a British national, who was arrested on Saturday, June 4, 2016, is listed as “the boss” of the Thai Garden Restaurant in Umalas, Bali and as having lived in Thailand 10 years.

Thai police have said they believe O’Neil is part of a larger drug trafficking gang operating in Thailand.

O’Neil was traveling in a public bus at the time of his arrest.


Try to be Less Appealing
Supreme Court Slaps More Prison Time, More Fines and Seizes Assets of Former Klungkung Regent Wayan Candra

The disgraced former Regent of the Bali Regency of Klungkung, I Wayan Candra, has seen his appeal to the Indonesian Supreme Court on corruption charges result in a reaffirmation of his guilt and a tougher sentence adding more years to this prison term.

Beritabali.com reports that the Prosecutors Office in Klungkung received an official copy of the Supreme Courts ruling on Thursday, June 9, 2016.

In the definitive ruling of the Supreme Court, Wayan Candra must serve 18 years in prison and pay a fine of Rp. 10 billion. Moreover, the Court ruled that Candra must pay restitution equal to Rp. 42 billion and ordered that 60 personal assets be seized by the Court on behalf of the Nation.

The decision of the highest court was much more severe than Candra’s earlier sentence of 15 years in prison, a fine of Rp. 1 billion and Rp. 1.179 billion restitution.

The appeal process through the judicial system has been a tough road for Wayan Chandra increasing substantially, over two separate appeals, his original sentence of 12 years in prison, a fine of Rp. 1 billion and restitution of Rp. 1.197 billion.

In other words, the two-step appeal process pursued by Candra to reduce or reverse his punishment has, in fact, seen his prison sentence increased by 50% to 18 years, his fine increased 1,000% from Rp. 1 billion to Rp. 10, billion, the amount of restitution increased from Rp. 1.197 billion to Rp. 42 billion. What’s more the court has now authorized Candra's official impoverishment and the forfeiture of 60 personal assets.

Prosecutors say that if Candra does not pay the amount of restitution stipulated by the Court a further five years can be added to his sentence and that reductions in sentence term during his imprisonment cannot be applied until the restitution has been paid.

The 60 assets ordered seized by the courts is comprised of parcels of land and bank account balances at a number of financial institutions.

The original corruption case is linked to corruptions charges leveled against the former Regent for misdealings in the acquisition of land for the Gunaksa Pier Project.


When Six Months is Not Enough
Indonesian Immigration Bans Two Australian Tourists for Six Months after Behaving Badly on an AirAsia Flight from Sydney

Indonesian immigration authorities have banned two Australians – Aaron Gerrard Dolden (25) and Pasalic Alen (27) from entering Indonesia for six month following an in-flight incident in which the two men acted up on board an AirAsia flight from Sydney to Bali on May 27, 2016.

While the two men were not found to have violated aviation law, an investigation and statements made by the men confirmed that they acted in an unruly manner, perhaps precipitated by alcohol, in which they harassed passengers and crew, and made statements suggesting they were considering jumping from their flight in mid-air.

A representative from the Airport Authority, Ade Yuliana, told the Sydney Morning Herald, "Let this be a lesson, that everybody has to obey the law of the country, wherever they are."

Dolden and Alen were part of a group of 11 friends traveling from Sydney to Bali for a week’s holiday and engaged in a variety of “unruly acts” on board the AirAsia X flight. Investigators determined that alcohol played a role in the incident, was not premeditated, not connected to mental disorder and had no connection to any radical movement.

The two men, according to reports from the crew, created a nuisance by repeatedly pushing call buttons, demanding beer, annoyed other passengers, blocked toilets and used their phones to make unwarranted pictures of crew members.

Dolden reportedly also proclaimed he was preparing to jump from the plane and insisted he did not care when warned that security would be called to handle the matter.

Dolden and Alen were summarily returned to Sydney and are now banned from returning to Indonesia for six months.

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He Thought he Could Fly 


Power to the People
President Warns of Danger of Power Shortage to Hit Java and Bali in 2019

President Joko Widodo is worried that the islands of Java and Bali will experience an electrical power shortage by 2019 if an additional need for 21,000 megawatts in electrical power remains unaddressed.

Quoted by the State News Agency Antara, President Widodo said at the groundbreaking for a new power plant in Banten on Friday, June 10, 2016: “If we look at the needs for Java and Bali there is still a need for 21,000 megawatts, a major requirement that must be met. If we do not accelerate the process of meeting this need by 2019, there will be a critical shortfall of electrical power in Java and Bali in 2019.

The President warned that a failure to meet the power needs will necessitate a series of planned brown outs in Java and Bali. What’s more, President Widodo said power shortage would have lead-on effects reducing investments, industrial development and the building of new factories.

The President also emphasized that providing electrical power to members of the public still living off the power grid remains a main priority of the government.


Nothing Decided Yet
PLN Officials Deny That Power Pylon for Bali Crossing will Violate Sanctity of West Bali Temple

Following complaints from local villages and community leaders in Sumberklampok, West Bali that the landing spot for the “Bali Crossing” high-voltage power pylon is going to be built only 500 meters from a sacred Balinese temple, authorities seem to now be backtracking, insisting the project is still “in committee.”

The High-Voltage Tower to be built on Bali’s West Coast will be among the world’s tallest, standing 376-meters high. The power lines supported by the tower will carry 500 kilo-volts on power from the Watudodol Power Plant at Banyuwangi, East Java to Bali.

As reported by NusaBali, the chairman of an investigative team from the Regency of Buleleng, I Ketut Suparto, says he has yet to receive a formal request or any other key documents from the State Power Board (PLN) in connection with the “Bali Crossing” project. Nonetheless, PLN did start socializing the “Bali Crossing” project in 2014 when they invited the Buleleng administration, traditional village officers and the leaders of the Sumberklampok Village to briefing meetings.

At that time, according to Ketut Suprapto, the Buleleng Administration rejected coordinate locations for the landing tower that were deemed to close to the Segara Rupek Temple. Adding, on June 6, 2016: “So there has been no decision taken on the location of the tower. It’s been said that PLN want to discuss (the location of the tower) and socialize that (with the public). But if work has begun on the project, then we need to get a verification of that.”

A similar sounding statement was made by the chairman of the Buleleng House of Representatives, Gede Supriantna, who says the House has received no information in connection with the construction of the Bali Crossing pylon in the village of Sumnerklampok.

Supriatnya said that the sanctity of the Segera Rupek Temple must be preserved.

The Buleleng House of Representatives has pledged to meet with PLN and explore the legal and cultural issues connected to the building of a landing pylon within the West Bali National Park.

Meanwhile, PLN is denying that any work has commenced on the “Bali Crossing”  including the building of a constriction jetty to facilitate the eventual construction.

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Pool Tragedy
Malaysian Tourist Dies After Swim in Kuta-Area Hotel Swimming Pool

Wong Chee Fung (29), a Malaysian tourist visiting Bali has apparently drowned in the swimming pool of The Vira Hotel on Jalan Kartika Plaza in Kuta at around 6:05 pm on Friday, June 6, 2016.

Beritabali.com reports that an employee of the hotel found Wong floating face-up in the pool. At the time, the man’s wife was also in the swimming pool.

The staff member said that Wong’s wife assured the hotel worker that “everything is OK” and he took no further notice of the main floating in the pool.

When police reviewed the CCTV footage they saw a film that showed the couple initially on the pool’s edge and, later, the man standing in the pool and then floating face down in the pool while the wife sat at the edge of the pool. The film also showed a staff member dragging the man’s body out of the pool.

The man was rushed to a local medical clinic where emergency resuscitation procedures failed and where he was pronounced dead 25 minutes after arriving at the clinic.

The man’s wife said her husband was suffering from an unspecified illness and has refused an autopsy be performed on his body.


Arrivederci Roberto
Italian Tourist Who Joked About Carrying a Bomb at Bali Airport Could Go to Jail

Passengers waiting to check-in at Counter A-6 at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport were panicked and security personnel swung into action when an Italian tourist, Roberto Uboldi, told workers that he was carrying a bomb in his hand luggage.

Uboldi was checking in for a AirAsia flight on Saturday, June 4, 2016, when he made his startling pronouncement that resulted in his immediate incarceration by security personnel.

JawaPost.com reports that the 32-year-old native of Abbiategrasso, Italy, who lists his occupation as an electrician, was rushed to the security office of the airport where he underwent a lengthy interrogation and inspection of his checked and hand-carried luggage.

Uboldi told security officials he was “only joking” saying he only wanted to be “friendly” with airline staffers and use his time while checking in.

Uboldi’s failed attempt at humor included telling officials that he had a bomb in a small, blue carry-on bad and also had a chainsaw in his luggage.

There’s little doubt that the Italian man got his wish in terms of seeking a “close personal relationship” with security officials who put him through a thorough personal and luggage search.

Uboldi told officials that he did not know that the law in Indonesian does not allow people to joke about bringing bombs on board an airplane.

Officials must now decide whether or not to charge the Italian under Indonesian aviation law that provide for long jail sentences and substantial fines.

(Photo Source: Couchsurfing.com)


RIP Ketut Liyer - 1916-2016
Remembering Ketut Liyer Ė Fabled Bali Holy Man Made Famous in Eat, Pray Love - Dead at 100

Bali’s world-famous soothsayer, Jro I Ketut Liyer, has died at age 100 at the Surya Usada Hospital on Wednesday, June 8, 2016, at 10:45 pm after a long illness.

Made famous in Edith Gilbert’s best selling the book Eat, Pray Love and the 2010 film by the same name, those of us who remember Ketut Liyer before encountering him on the pages of Gilbert’s book, recall an amiable and welcoming elderly gentleman who "held court" reading personal auras and forecasting the future for a steady stream of locals and foreigners who passed through traditional Balinese compound each day.

In contrast to the days of his post-Hollywood stardom, these earlier visits lack the venality of the latter period when his family took on a very active role in his professional management. Before Ketut Liyer became a brand, those early visits resembled friendly chats over a cup of tea; an encounter with a Bali-Hindu” wise man who found his visitors as interesting as his callers found him; a convivial trunk show of traditional pen and ink drawings available for purchase at a modest price as amulets for  a doorway "back home"; and a discrete whispered suggestion that a vluntary donation of any size would bring thanks and blessings.

Perhaps the result of his advanced age and a lifetime of welcoming too many visitors, Ketut Liyer was notoriously forgetful. He would forget a previous encounter, only to have the memory miraculously come to mind during the reunion. In fact, Ketut did not pretend to have an all-encompassing memory; freely admitting his amnesic thought processes. I, for one, found his forgetfulness endlessly charming and his mental fogginess homologous to the use of a magical, cloudy crystal ball.

Ketut Liyer's wondering mind and innate charm were captured by Gilbert in her book where she tells how the aging Balian’s pseudo-prophesies prompted the author to linger in Bali in search of love and happiness.

After a series of post-mortem ceremonies suitable to his status as a Balian or Holy Man, Ketut Liyer’s remains were cremated (mekingsan ring gni) at the Pengosken Community Cemetery (Setra) at mid-day on Friday, June 10, 2016.

Liyer’s Son, I Nyoman Latra (64), said his Father’s health had declined rapidly over the past 1.5 years, marked by growing absent-mindedness and fatigue.

Latra, in recent years and in keeping with local tradition, has taken on his Father’s mantle and now performs healing treatments and spiritual consultations for locals, expatriates, and foreign visitors.

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We Love a Parade!
President Joko Widodo Opens 38th Bali Arts Festival

Indonesian President Joko Widodo formally opened the 38th Bali Arts Festival (PKB-38) via a parade held around the Bajra Sandhi Monument of the People’s Struggle on Saturday, June 11, 2016.

Quoted by Beritabali.com, President Joko Widodo said: “I am happy to be here in Bali today, on the island of the Gods, in Bali. This moment of (the opening of) the 38th Bali Arts Festival has been long awaited by the people the foreign visitors."

The President described the Arts Festival in Bali as serving as both a means of education and as a motor for the people's economy of Bali.

President Widodo was accompanied by Indonesia’s First Lady, Iriana Joko Widodo, who, together with the President, wore traditional Balinese dress for the occasion.

Also joining the Presidential delegation on hand to start the parade and the month-long festival were also Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika, the Minister of Tourism Arief Yahya, and Minister of Education and Culture Anies Baswedan.

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Freedom Takes a Beating
ForBALI Reports Illegal Removal of Banners and Billboards Protesting Reclamation and Physical Attacks During Presidential Visit to Bali and Opening Parade of PKB

Bali Post reports that, repeating a pattern of officials actions that heralded previous Presidential visits to Bali, banners and billboards objecting to the reclamation of Benoa Bay were once again torn down before Joko Widodo and had official delegation arrived in Bali to open the 38th Bali Arts Festival (PKB-38) and to review the operation of a Gas and Diesel Power Generating Station in South Denpasar and a Liquid Natural Gas Depot at Benoa Harbor.

Bali’s leading daily newspaper said a billboard protesting the reclamation was dismantled at Pesangaran near the power generating plant and at the Bali Arts Center – both locations on the President's official itinerary.

The Coordinator of the People Forum Rejecting the Reclamation of Benoa Bay (ForBALI), Wayan “Gendo” Suardana, said his group was becoming frustrated with various efforts by the Government to ignore the wishes of the Balinese people. He added that ForBALI was becoming bored by the repeated removal and destruction of banners and billboards on the eve of every Presidential and Vice-Presidential visit to Bali.

“For us, these actions are steps that are boring and no longer cause tension. Today the people of Bali will continue to fight. In other words, the more often that people try to crush down our aspirations, the more practiced the people will become in opposing this misuse of power,” said Gendo.

Official efforts to remove any signs of protest to the reclamation did not stop with removing billboards and banners. Agus Saskara, who attended the opening parade for the Bali Arts Festival wearing a “Reject Reclamation” t-shirts, was forced to remove his shIrt by police at the scene.

Also at the parade, Suriadi Darmoko and Adi Sumiarta were asked to leave the parade area when they arrived wearing similar t-shirts. Engaging in a spirited verbal debate with officials captured on YouTube, the two anti-reclamation activists were beaten by an unknown individual who they claim were part of the parade’s security detail.

Suriadi Darmoko, who is the Executive Director of ForBALI said those who hit him said they were acting on the orders of their superiors, but refused to say what agency of the government they worked for. Darmoko suffered bruises to his jaw while Suriadi received painful hits to the neck.

Responding to the physical attack, Gendo described the attack as not merely an attempt by the authorities to frighten the two ForBALI activists, but, rather, an action intended to immobilize them. Adding: “The incident is (in fact) humorous. It is as though those in power are frightened by banners, billboards, and t-shirts. The program (the opening parade for PKB) is an open activity, a people’s party and has never had a dress code. People are entitled to wear whatever they like, including wearing a ‘refuse reclamation’ T-shirt.”

Gendo said members of ForBali and the many people in Bali wear “reject reclamation” t-shirts in performing their daily activities.

Gendo said ForBali is examining its options following the latest incidents. Saying, “Let the people judge for themselves how frightened the authorities are when confronted with a ‘reject reclamation’ T-shirt."

Following the incident, sales of “Tolak Reklamasi” T-shIrts at Rp. 100,000 each remain brisk at the WAHLI Bali office on Jalan Dewi Madri IV no. 2 Renon in Denpasar.


Lunch Time Swim Ends Tragically
24-Year-Old Chinese Woman Drowns in Swissbel Hotel Pool at Sawangan, South Bali

The second drowning of a tourist in a single week occurred on Sunday, June 12, 2016, when a Chinese female tourist Wei Wan Wan (24) was found unconscious in the swimming pool of the SwissBel Hotel Segara in Sawangan, South Kuta.

Rushed to the nearby BIMC Hospital at Nusa Dua, the young woman was pronounced dead 30 minutes later at around 11:30 am.

The swimming pool was reportedly in use by many tourists at the time of the incident. After swimming for approximately 15 minutes with friends, Wei suddenly fainted and began floating near the edge of the pool.

Wei’s friends began screaming for help, calling a lifeguard to assist the woman. CPR was applied at the poolside while an ambulance from BIMC Hospital rushed to the scene. Worried at the woman’s condition, the hotel did not wait for the ambulance and rushed her by private vehicle to BIMC.

The Chinese tourist’s body has been sent to the morgue at the Sanglah General Hospital in Denpasar for forensic examination, including a possible autopsy.

As reported by NusaBali, a preliminary examination of the woman’s body by forensic specialists in Denpasar discovered abrasions on the woman’s chest, left leg and lower back. A severe bruise was also found on Wei’s upper arm that doctors believe was caused by a blunt object.

It is not clear if the injuries were the result of the rescue, evacuation and resuscitation process carried out at the hotel.

Police continue to investigate the case.

Six days previous to Wei’s drowning, a Malaysian man died on Friday, June 6, 2016 after Swimming in the Vira Hotel in South Kuta.


 
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