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  • Writer's pictureManushya Foundation

#EndModernSlavery Slave labour uncovered in the Indonesian palm industry!

Abusive labour practices such as forced labour, child labour and a myriad of human rights abuses have been known to take place in the Indonesian palm industry. Earlier this month, a shocking case of 40 men enslaved in an Indonesian regent's house shook the public. Read more ⤵️

Originally investigated for bribery, the regent of Langkat (an area in the North of the Indonesian island of Sumatra) Terbit Rencana Perangin-Angin was found to imprison 40 men in barred cells in his house. Although he has kept inmates in the cells for the last 10 years, the place was only found during a house search on 18 January by the Corruption Eradication Commission.

Last week, the police concluded that the facility was in fact an unregistered drug rehabilitation center run by the regent. However, it was also found that the captives were used as labour force on the regent's palm oil plantations - without getting paid! They were abused, badly beaten and had no contact with the outer world. This is an unacceptable case of modern slavery!

The case is already investigated by Komnas HAM, the Indonesian National Commission on Human Rights. The Commission announced yesterday that the preliminary investigation shows that more than one person died in the regent's house during their detention. This was a result of abusive behavior and violence the inmates faced while detained!

#WeAreManushyan - Equal Human Beings

📣 We call on the Government of Indonesia to:

✔️Promptly investigate this appalling case of modern slavery

✔️Put in place an effective policy framework to prevent human rights abuses in the palm oil industry

Join us in our call to make sure that no humans are held captive against their will!



Agus Rahmat & Foe Peace Simbolon, Komnas HAM Duga Korban Meninggal di Kerangkeng Akibat Kekerasan, (30 January 2022), available at:

Amnesty International, Palm Oil: Global brands profiting from child and forced labour, (30 November 2016), available at:

Coconuts Jakarta, Indonesian regent arrested for graft also accused of forcing dozens into slavery at palm oil plantation, (25 January 2022), available at:



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