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Defending Baliís Doorstep

Steps to Tighten Security at Baliís Sea Gateways of Gilimanuk and Padang Bai

(3/23/2012) Following the fatal shooting of five suspected terrorists by the elite Densus 88 police squad on Sunday, March 18, 2013 [See: The Terror Stops Here], members of Bali’s Provincial House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) are calling for an urgent upgrade in security arrangements at Giimanuk, the seaport gateway to Bali from Java.

According to the Bali Post, the chief of the Demokrat faction in the DPRD-Bali, Nengah Tamba said on March 23, 2011, that he hoped a security gate would be installed at the Gilimanuk port equipped with sophisticated x-ray and screening devices through which everyone entering Bali from Java would have to pass.

Citing as an example the security gate in place at Nusa Dua at the Bali Tourism Development Corporation (BTDC), he revealed that there is already Rp. 64 billion (US$7.1 million) in the 2012 provincial budget for the installation of the much-needed security gate.

Plans are for another similar security gateway to be installed on Bali’s eastern sea gateway of Padang Bai.

Said Tamba, “We hope the equipment will be installed as soon as possible.” To that end, he urged that the security gate projects be put out to bid and that training be commenced for the officials who will be assigned at the gates.

Another legislator, Ketut Suastika of the Jembrana House of Representatives (DPRD-Jembrana), had earlier called for x-ray equipment to be installed at Gilimanuk, necessary, in his view, to back up the strong commitment to keep Bali safe exhibited among those in charge of the port.

The legislator sees the proposed x-ray equipment as needed to x-ray vehicles entering Bali to ensure contraband, weapons and explosives are not being brought onto the island.

Suastika said the need for better security equipment at Gilimanuk outweighed the need to develop the Sarbagita transportation systems, reasoning that all development efforts in Bali are for naught unless they are supported by a safe and secure situation island-wide.