Residents of the Badung village of Bongkasa on the Ayung River were stopped at the last minute last weekend from building a fence to block the “ricefield and village views” that hotels on the other bank, in Gianyar, promote to their guests.
Saying they felt “underappreciated” by the hotels, they had bought and were to erect a view-blocking aluminium fence. But a senior Badung bureaucrat who happened to be in the area to inspect landslip damage managed to persuade them not to go ahead.
The argument is over the failure of the dozen or so hotels and villas on the other bank to contribute funds or community support to Bongkasa in amounts the village regards as acceptable.
“At the very least, the hotels could contribute with their CSR programme,” said village leader Made Suarjana, referring to corporate social responsibility.
Badung bureaucrat I Made Subawa asked Suarjana to stop the fence-building and said local people should remain calm in addressing the problem.
He said he would report the issue to the Badung Regent.
Subawa said that while he agreed hotels should contribute to the support of villages they marketed to guests as traditional Balinese panoramas, in Bongkasa’s case the hotels were in regency and there would need to be discussion between Badung and Gianyar.
Bongkasa villagers then agreed to wait. Suarjana said: “We demand a solution from the government so that we also enjoy the fruits of development of the tourism sector.”