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A Very Matter of Fact Governor in Bali

Governor Views Damning Review of the Island of Bali by TIME Magazine as Constructive Criticism.

(4/9/2011) A very damning appraisal of Bali's environment and development written by Andrew Marshall for TIME ["Holiday in Hell: Bali's Ongoing Woes"] was met with outrage in many quarters in Bali and Indonesia.

However, Bali governor Made Pastika chose to take a more sage approach; admitting the article that found Bali's beaches dirty and its crime rate rising as "in keeping with the facts in Bali."

Pastika reviewed the article, which appeared in the April 1 edition of TIME, saying: "We have to be introspective about the TIME article. We have to admit that Bali isn't clean, there's lots of trash. The fact that there's lots of garbage can be used as a reason (for change); we have to correctly handle the problem. That our sea water in Kuta is polluted with plankton is part of a natural phenomenon cannot be used as a reason. There has to be a way so the skin of the tourists does not itch."

Pastika said the Time article has prompted him to seek the assistance of all elements of the island to create an island more in keeping the reputation of Bali being a heaven on earth.

Pastika concluded: "Our job is to make Bali like a heaven. A Bali that is clean, not congested with traffic, neat and with good people. Later, it's for other to judge us, not for us to do. So, what TIME has written is factually correct. Whether we're a heaven or a hell, it just an opinion. What people want to see: is there action or not?"