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All We are Saying, is Give Peace a Chance

Officials Want New World Peace Gong Monument in East Denpasar Torn Down for Zoning Law Violations.

(9/25/2011) Grand plans to establish World Peace Gong Monument at Taman Shanti Buana, at Kertalangu, East Denpasar, have run afoul for failing to obtain the necessary licenses and permits.

The ambitious monument that was inaugurated on Wednesday, September 21, 2011, is an extremely large gong suspended from a Balinese-style superstructure sitting on a large pedestal. The center of the gong is painted to resemble the planet earth as seen from space. The national symbols of 220 countries and life-sized statues of Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Mikhail Gorbachev, Barack Obama and Nelson Mandela have also been incorporated into the final design.

Built and funded with a desires to create a worldwide gathering point for people dedicated to peace, the monument's future now sits in limbo with Denpasar and Jakarta officials calling for the monument's destruction.

Official irritation is linked to the monument’s developer’s failure to obtain the required construction permits and the structure's violation of “green zone” regulations that expressly prohibit the establishment of any permanent structures in the area occupied by the World Peace Gong Monument.

Local zoning official, as reported by NusaBali, had visited the site in August during its construction phase when they formally advised the monument's developers of an absolute violation of the prohibition against permanent structures in a green zone area.

Officials are also saying the management of the park failed to socialize the project to surrounding residents, creating disaffection among villagers who claim they have not been consulted about the monument’s construction on communal village lands.

The Deputy for Coordination for Environment Social Vulnerability of the Ministry for the People’s Welfare, Willem Rampingilei, has asked the World Peace Gong Monument (MGPD) in Kertalangu, East Denpasar be dismantled due to its violation of environment and zoning rules.
Explained Rampinhilei: “We have decided that the MGPD should not be built in the Cultural Village of Kertalangu. We are still seeking another location. In any case, Bali is still our first priority to build the subject monument.”

While many Denpasar official applaud the initiative to build an international peace monument in Bali, they bemoan the fact that those behind the project has failed to follow correct procedures and established zoning rules.