Indonesian president pledges to boost human resources development, infrastructure, debureaucratization

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By Eddy Suprapto
AsiaN Contributor

Jakarta: The Plenary Session of the Indonesian People’s Consultative Assembly today witnessed the swearing-in of President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and Vice President Ma’ruf Amin for the 2019-2024 term.

The inauguration of President Jokowi was attended by Asean heads of state namely Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah from Brunei Darussalam, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Muhamad, Cambodian President Hunsen, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morison and representatives from Middle Eastern countries.

In his inauguration address President Jokowi who was re-elected as Indonesia’s president for the 2019-2024 term based on the April 17 presidential election results, said the priority was to eliminate poverty in Indonesia.

Assembly Chairman Bambang Soesatyo chaired the inauguration session of the President and Vice-president of the republic.

The People’s Consultative Assembly building was packed with 700 members of the People’s Legislative Assembly and members of the Regional Representative Council.

Guests from Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Africa, including President Megawati Soekarno Putri, Vice President Hamsyah Haz, President Soesilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Vice President Boediono attended the inauguration ceremony.

According to Head of the People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR) Bambang Soesatyo, foreign dignitaries attending the inauguration ceremony included 17 heads of state and governments as well as special envoys, and 168 foreign ambassadors

Political opponents in the general election Prabowo Subiyanto and Sandiaga Unno also attended the smooth and peaceful inauguration which was a manifestation of national reconciliation between the winner of the election and the rivals in the election. At the same time, it showed the process of democracy in Indonesia in stages.

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In his speech the chairman of the people’s consultation assembly expressed appreciation of President Jokowi’s first administration. Bambang Soesatyo said that the general election was to elect a leader in a country through the practice of democracy. The law becomes the rule in the electoral process. The consequence of an electoral democracy system is the popularity which is the key to the success of a leader. Popularity is good because positive action is useful for the community or negative action.

As President of Incomben, President Jokowi is more popular and known by the people because of the achievement of real infrastructure programs that are enjoyed by the community.

President Jokowi built airports, ports, toll roads, trains, MRT, Subway. He provided health cards for poor people, giving scholarships to poor students and giving credit to poor people and fertilizer to farmers, building agricultural irrigation flows and channeling village funds. President Jokowi cut fuel subsidies a year worth 650 trillion rupiah. Such achievements cannot be ignored or covered up because people see and feel real change.

New value of innovation as culture

In his speech, the President reminded that homework made Indonesia a developed and modern nation amid determination to achieve zero percent poverty in 2045.

“Our dream in 2045 is that Indonesia’s Gross Domestic Product reaches $7 trillion,” President Jokowi said.

The President added that such achievements did not come automatically and that they were a real challenge. They must be accompanied by hard, fast and productive work by the nation.

“In a world full of risk that is also very dynamic and competitive, we must continue to develop new ways, new values. Do not let us get stuck in a monotonous routine. Innovation should not only be knowledge. Innovation is culture,” he said.

President Jokowi criticized the government bureaucracy that is still using old methods.

“Often the bureaucracy reports that the program has been carried out, the budget has been spent, and the accountability report has been completed,” he said.

When asked, the answer is ’The program has been implemented, sir.’ It turns out the people have not felt the results. Once again, the main thing is not the process, the main thing is the result.

In the next five years, the focus will be on building skilled human resources, mastering science and technology and inviting global talents to work with Indonesia.

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Second, the development of infrastructure that connects the production area with the distribution area, which facilitates access to tourist areas. This in turn boosts new employment, which accelerates the added value of the people’s economy.

Third, we must simplify all forms of regulatory constraints. We must cut, we must cut.

Fourth, we must continue to do a large-scale simplification of bureaucracy. Investment in job creation must be prioritized. Long procedures must be cut.

The fifth focus is economic transformation. Indonesia must transform from dependence on natural resources to the competitiveness of modern manufacturing and services that have high added value to the nation’s prosperity for social justice for all Indonesian people.”

After the inauguration at the House of Representatives, president Jokowi returned to the Independence Palace. Along the road from Gatoto Subroto, the Sudirman to Thamrin roads were filled with people standing waving red and white flags, welcoming President Jokowi’s entourage.

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