Prabowo-Jokowi communication does not cover ministerial post: Gerindra

Jakarta (ANTARA) – Communication between Greater Indonesia Movement (Gerindra) Party Chief Prabowo Subianto and President-elect Joko Widodo (Jokowi) prioritizes the concept of future development instead of the post the party would get if it joins the government.

This statement was made by the party spokesman.

“Although we got nothing, the important point is that we can still offer inputs to the government to promote the economy. That is far more important. Concept is more important than people or post,” Chief of the Gerindra Party Executive Board Edhy Prabowo stated in Jakarta on Saturday.

The communication between Prabowo and Jokowi was related to detailed matters. Their discussion did not cover ministerial posts since concept held greater weightage than posts, he remarked.

All party decisions rest with Prabowo, as the party’s chief of patron and general chairman. All cadres comply with the decisions, he noted.

“In Gerindra, the most important aspect is the stand of the party’s general chairman. We are ready to implement all his instructions,” he stated.

Prabowo noted that if Gerindra remains outside the government, it will always offer inputs to the Jokowi-Ma’ruf administration.

However, he emphasized that if Gerindra is requested to join the government, it would remain critical to voice the truth instead of appeasing the leadership.

Source: ANTARA News

Peace diplomacy a priority in Kashmir issue

Nearly four million Kashmiris have been under lockdown with movement restrictions and a near communications blackout since August 4, 2019, as the Indian Government recently revoked special status accorded to Indian-administered Kashmir in its Constitution. In the lead-up to the move, India sent tens of thousands of additional troops � joining 500,000 already there – to the disputed region, imposed a crippling curfew, shut down telecommunications and the Internet, arrested hundreds of Kashmiri political leaders, and turned parts of the main city of Srinagar into a fortress of roadblocks and barbed wire.

The latest developments have escalated the tension between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan, which have fought two of their three wars over the disputed territory of Kashmir.

Pakistan formally asked the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) recently to hold an emergency session to address the situation.

As a non-permanent member of the UNSC, Indonesia, however, believes that dialogue and communication between Pakistan and India would be more desirable to resolve the Kashmir problem.

From Indonesia’s point of view, peace and security diplomacy must be prioritized in dealing with the Kashmir issue. Indonesia is also of the view that the solution to the problem should be sought bilaterally by Pakistan and India. A bilateral solution is a key to this problem.

Teuku Faizasyah, spokesman for the Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry, said in a statement on August 15, 2019 that it would be better for Pakistan and India to hold a dialogue to resolve the Kashmir problem, because a communication deadlock has led to information scarcity, giving rise to various interpretations that have only led to an escalation of the problem.

In the UN Security Council, Indonesia emphasized the importance of the two countries exercising restraint and resolving the problem bilaterally, Febrian Alphyanto Ruddyard, Director General of Multilateral Cooperation of the Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry, said.

Indonesia has closely monitored the flaring of tensions between India and Pakistan in Kashmir following the Indian Government’s move that has triggered resistance from the Kashmiris.

The Government of Indonesia expressed the hope that the conflicting parties would placate tensions, engage in negotiations, and adopt diplomatic means to solve the problem.

“This is because escalating tensions will certainly not benefit anyone. Indonesia expresses hope that communication and diplomacy would be prioritized,” Faizasyah said in a statement issued on August 7, 2019.

The Indian presidential decree revokes Article 370 of India’s Constitution that guaranteed special rights to the Muslim-majority state, including its right to its own Constitution and decision-making process for all matters except defense, communications, and foreign affairs.

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir has expressed “deep concern” over the recent developments, AlJazeera reported.

In a statement at an emergency meeting held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, Secretary General Yousef bin Ahmed al-Othaimeen, reaffirmed the OIC’s “support to the people of Jammu and Kashmir in their just struggle to achieve their legitimate rights, in particular, the right to self-determination.”

Meanwhile, Agung Nurwijoyo, political observer of South Asian affairs, in the University of Indonesia, has urged the Indonesian Government to take a proactive role in restoring peace in Kashmir.

Indonesia has a moral responsibility to be actively involved because the country has historical, socio-political and economic ties with both India and Pakistan, Nurwijoyo, said.

Indonesia, India and Pakistan are among the initiators of the Asia-Africa Conference in 1955 and founders of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) established in 1961. Besides, Indonesia’s position is neutral so it could be entrusted to encourage India and Pakistan to communicate and go back to the negotiation table.

Another call for Indonesia to play a more active role was voiced by Amin Sudarsono, President Director of SEAHUM (Southeast Asia Humanitarian Committee).

Indonesia should become a mediator of a dialog between India and Pakistan to prevent more civilians from becoming victims of humanitarian conflict, he noted.

“SEAHUM wants to convey two things. First, the Indonesian Government has a big chance to promote peace diplomacy in Kashmir. Second, we, as a humanitarian organization, will always be on standby to watch second by second the situation there. So far, we have not heard information about human movement after the communication line has been cut off, and 10 thousand troops have been deployed in Kashmir,” he said.

On Aug 14, 2019, Minister Retno Marsudi had separate meetings with the ambassadors of India and Pakistan to Indonesia, to listen to their governments’ perspectives regarding the Kashmir problem, and to encourage the two neighboring countries, which was initially one nation, to restore communication.

“Back from Banyuwangi, I separately received the Ambassador of Pakistan, Abdul Salik Khan, as well as the Charge d’affaires of India, Prakash Gupta in Jakarta,” Marsudi tweeted.

Source: ANTARA News

Indonesia needs innovations to move forward: Jokowi

Jakarta (ANTARA) – Indonesia is in need of various innovations to open path for opportunities to create a leap in the nation’s progress, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) noted in his state address before members of the House of Representatives (DPR) and the Regional Representatives Council (DPD) at the parliament complex here on Friday.

“With innovations, quality human resources, and mastery of technology, we can be released from the curse of natural resources. Indeed, our country is rich in bauxite, coal, palm oil, fish, and many more. But if we downstreaming our industry, I am sure, we can jump (higher),” the president stated.

By carrying out downstreaming of products of science and technology, as well as creating innovations in the industrial sector, Indonesia can jump to a higher level and achieve economic independence.

President Jokowi said the Indonesian people had made various leaps towards their national independence, but still needed to increase efforts to achieve even greater progress.

The leap of progress, he referred to, among others, is the development of the bauxite processing industry that has been carried out to reduce the import of alumina, as well as the downstream of the coal industry into dimethyl ether (DME) to reduce the import of millions of tons of LPG each year.

The government has also downstreamed the nickel industry into ferronickel to increase the added value of Indonesian nickel up to fourfold.

At present, Indonesia has started with the B20 vehicle fuel program (diesel fuel with a 20 percent biodiesel mixture) and will enter B30 (diesel fuel with a 30 percent biodiesel mixture), Jokowi said.

According to him, the Indonesian people can continue their endeavors to achieve progress towards the use of B100 and produce their own aviation fuel so the country will no longer have to import.

“But we can do more than that, we can export aviation fuel, we also want to produce aviation fuel made from oil,” he said.

Indonesia has also started to develop electric cars in an attempt to build its own electric car industry.

President Jokowi encouraged all Indonesians to master science and technology, and to continue to create various innovations and breakthroughs to further develop the country.

Source: ANTARA News

Jokowi announces Kalimantan to host Indonesia’s new capital city

Jakarta (ANTARA) – President Joko Widodo reiterated on Friday morning that Kalimantan Island would serve as a host for Indonesia’s new capital city.

At this historical moment, in the name of Allah Subhanahu Wa Taala , I’d like to ask permission and support from the members of House of Representatives, respected members of the country, and the people in Indonesia to move the capital city to Kalimantan Island, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said during the state of the nation address.

Jokowi, who wore traditional Sasak attire, explained that the capital city would not only be a symbol and an identity of the country, but also it would also represent the progress of the nation.

For the president, moving the capital city from Jakarta to Kalimantan Island would increase the equity and equality of the country’s economic development.

“This move is for ‘Indonesia Maju’ (Onward Indonesia) Vision. Long live Indonesia,” Jokowi noted.

In early August, President Jokowi said the definitive location of Indonesia’s new capital would be announced after all comprehensive studies on its relocation had been completed and problems related to it had been resolved.

Jokowi, however, had confirmed that Indonesia’s capital city would be relocated to Kalimantan Island.

In connection with this capital city relocation issue, the National Development Planning Ministry and the National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas) has conducted studies and reviews on several locations in Kalimantan Island.

Last July, National Development Planning Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro said the new capital city development would not destroy forest and peatland covering most of the Island’s area.

“The area (that will be developed as a new capital city) is vacant. Thus it will not disrupt the forest,” Brodjonegoro said.

Regarding the cost of moving the state’s capital city, Bappenas has estimated that it would be nearly Rp466 trillion. “Of the total cost of Rp466 trillion, the required state budget is only around Rp30.6 trillion,” Bambang Brodjonegoro said on June 15, 2019.

Based on the estimates compiled by Bappenas, the Rp30.6 trillion from the state budget will be used to build state palaces and military/police strategic buildings as the principal functions, green open spaces as helping functions, and for land acquisition.

Aside from the state budget, the Government and the Business Entity Cooperation scheme worth Rp340.6 trillion and private sector funds worth Rp95 trillion will complete the total amount of Rp466 trillion required for the transfer of the state capital.

Funds from the Government and Business Entity Cooperation will be utilized for the construction of government buildings (legislative, executive, judiciary), official housing (multistorey and house-to-house for State Civil and Military/Police Apparatus), educational facilities (on the elementary, middle, and high school level), health facilities, correctional institution, infrastructure such as roads, electricity, telecommunications, water supply, drainage, waste treatment, and sports facilities.

Moreover, funds from the private sector will be used for building educational facilities (at the university level) and health facilities.

“So the majority of us are cooperating with the private sector and SOEs, the state budget is only a trigger. We will also use existing assets,” he revealed.

Source: ANTARA News