TNI must plan defense, security programs: Jokowi

Bandung, W Java President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said that the Indonesian Defense Forces (TNI) must begin working out short and long-term strategic defense and security programs to maintain the countrys stability.

“Security strategy is very important for our development now, both in the middle and in the long run,” the president stated at a sub-district and district military ceremony here on Monday.

Jokowi explained that other things that the military could do is to conduct researches on moving headquarters commands, in an effort to map security and defense strategy in the future.

He noted that the initiative was to be done in response to the rapid changes in the worlds economic and political fields. Thus, a strategy is needed in the face of the situation.

“For example, a study and research must be conducted to decide whether to move the headquarters to the east or to the west or to the north,” he remarked.

Jokowi not only touched on the issue of security strategy but also on TNI neutrality. He requested the TNI to continue to maintain the values of neutrality, especially in the face of 2019 General Elections.

“It means that the neutrality of the TNI must be maintained for the sake of political stability for development,” he added.

In the meantime, Chief of Staff of the Army General Mulyono reiterated that Army officers must remain neutral during the process of the simultaneous presidential and legislative elections to be held on April 17, 2019.

Moreover, Army officers are not allowed to be involved in practical politics, the general revealed.

“We must fully understand that the TNI belongs to the nation, stands above all groups, and remains undivided by practical politics,” the outgoing chief of staff of the Army stated.

During the 2019 election process, the TNI officers must demonstrate neutrality in politics and help create a conducive, peaceful, and safe situation.

He reminded officers of possible threats due to the existence of a degree of polarization among members of the public with regard to political support that could potentially trigger violations and conflicts among supporters.

“Hence, I call on every party to remain committed to implement peaceful elections that are free from riots, demonstrations, and social conflicts that could lead to anarchy and endanger national security and stability,” he cautioned.

The TNI must also forge synergy with the national and local police officers to safeguard security during the election process.

Source: Antara News