Not that many people know where the Sangihe Islands are, but the name of one of the regencies in North Sulawesi is suddenly embroiled in a series of controversies related to the issuance of a gold mining operation permit on the main island. The controversy escalated when shocking news arrived in the evening on June 9, 2021. The Vice Regent of Sangihe one Helmud Hontong, who vehemently opposed the gold mining operations on Sangihe Islands, died on a flight from Denpasar to Manado. In less than 30 minutes after Helmud received medical attention on the plane, Helmud was declared dead. This news was only known to the public outside of North Sulawesi several hours later. Various conspiracy theories emerged, including the allegation that Helmud’s death was related to the mining company he was against.

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