Journalist for Cermat.id in Ternate, Nurkholis Lamaau was beaten at his home, on Wednesday, 31 August 2022 at 09.15 AM. Journalist being hit on the head and back of the neck, and also verbally threatened.
The intimidation and assault experienced by journalist of Cermat.id was the impact of an opinion written by journalist. The opinion entitled "Inhaling Coal Dust Gets Rewards"
published on Tuesday, 30 August 2022.
The statemen at the opinion was quoted from the statement of the Deputy Mayor of Tidore Islands, Muhammad Sinen. That day, Muhammad Sinen gave a speech, at the opening of the domino card competition in Rum Balibunga Village, North Tidore District. The program broadcast live via Facebook.
In his remarks, Sinen said that residents living around the electric steam power plants of coal, should not be angry and reject the existence of the power plant.
Sinen said If the pollution affects residents, just enjoy it in peace. Because even if they become victims, other people are calm, so the residents get a reward.
Sinen's statement was quoted and criticized by Nurkholis in his opinion. The journalist stated that Sinen as a public official did not have empathy for the residents, who had long resistend at the existence of a power plant in that area.
That evening, the opinion link that had been published on the Cermat.id website was then shared by Nurkholis to the journalist's WhatApp group and his social media accounts.
The next day, on Wednesday 31 August 2022 at midnight, Muhammad Sinen's younger brother, Usman Sinen, came to the residence of the victim's family, in the Rum Balibung Village. When meeting with victims, Usman insisted that the opinions be deleted. Because Muhammad Sinen came to the opening of the domino card tournament, as a big family from the Rum Balibunga Village, not as the Deputy Mayor of Tidore Islands.
Usman also said the phrase "sniffing coal dust gets a reward" which Sinen conveyed was not serious, or just a joke. Usman urged the victim to delete this opinion, because he considered it would disrupt the interests of Muhammad Sinen, in the upcoming 2024 general elections. After coordinating with the editors of Cermat.id, this opinion was immediately deleted.
Wednesday morning, Sinen's nephews, Arianto or Ari, came to Nurkholis' house. When he met Nurkholis on the terrace of his house, Ari asked journalists the intention of writing such an opinion.
Nurkholis explained that this opinion was a form of criticism, against the statements of public officials who lack empathy for residents affected by the Coal Power Plant.
Ari was furious and said harshly "You are a foreigner here, are you a champion?
Why don't you talk to my uncle Muhammad Sinen properly, but write like that!"
Then Sinen's nephew hit Nurkholis twice on the head and back of the neck. After committing the act of violence, Ari again challenged "Would you like to report to the police? Go ahead, I'll wait 5 minutes," said Ari.
In the afternoon, at 12.47 PM, the victim who was accompanied by his family immediately reported the violence to the Tidore City Resort Police. For this violence case, the Soasio District Court, Tidore City Islands, handed down a one-month sentence with a three-month probation against Arianto on September 8, 2022.