A Commendation for outstanding performance of the Defense Minister

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A Commendation for outstanding performance of the Defense Minister
President Joko Widodo and Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto. Photo: DOC. IO

IO – MoD Prabowo Subianto has secured several outstanding achievements since being appointed as Defense Minister in President Joko Widodo’s current Cabinet. Adi Prayitno, a political observer at UIN Syarief Hidayatullah Jakarta, said that Jokowi, as the President is popularly known, has put MoD Prabowo in the right place. “All these achievements show that President Jokowi’s decision to appoint Prabowo as Defense Minister has put the right man in the right place,” said Adi.

Adi noted that one of MoD Prabowo’s standout achievements is the formation of the Armed Forces Reserve Component (Komcad), which is mandated in Law No. 23/2019 concerning Management of National Resources for National Defense (UU PSDN).

First of all, the Komcad formation by MoD Prabowo is impressive because the UU PSDN was passed in the era of Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu when MoD Prabowo’s party – the Gerindra Party – was not in the administration. This program had also been discussed since the presidency of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY), the 6th President of the Republic of Indonesia, but never came to fruition.

Secondly, the Defense Ministry under MoD Prabowo successfully established General L.B. Moerdani Modular Hospital in Merauke, Papua,
in just 20 days, to handle COVID-19 and support the celebration of the 20th National Sports Week (PON XX) in the easternmost province of Indonesia.

Prabowo also converted several training facilities of the Defense Ministry in Greater Jakarta into COVID-19 emergency hospitals, at the onset of the second wave of COVID-19 in Indonesia.

Third, Prabowo effectively bagged a manufacturing license for the stateof-the-art frigate Arrowhead 140 from a British manufacturer, Babcock International. These warships will be produced by PT PAL, a state-owned
shipbuilder, and armed with surface and air missiles.

This effort is in line with President Jokowi’s directions to capitalize defense spending into investment. The goal is to prioritize Indonesia’s defense industry, so the country can directly transfer its technology. “This achievement also confrms a number of survey results that place MoD Prabowo as the best Minister for Kabinet Indonesia Maju. It is not surprising that his electability remains stable and high,” he added.

According to the Executive Director of Indonesian Political Parameters, these achievements cannot be separated from Prabowo’s expertise in manifesting Jokowi’s expectations and his longstanding experience in
the military, covering more than two decades. “If we look closely, MoD
Prabowo seeks minimal publicity and rarely makes comments to the
media during his tenure as Defense Minister. Well, that was paid for with his various achievements,” he explained.

Apart from these remarkable achievements, Adi perceives how
the relationship between President Joko Widodo and MoD Prabowo
Subianto has become more cordial. He believes that the two political
elites want to convey a message to the public. “When these two leaders unite, they can create a positive moral effect in society, assuring the world that the country is stable,” Adi said.

He reveals that there have been several recent occasions revealing the camaraderie of President Jokowi and MoD Prabowo, one of which was
the establishment of a Reserve Command (Komcad), which was held just
a while ago.

Adi said MoD Prabowo also accompanied the President when inaugurating the L.B. Moerdani Hospital in Papua. Not long before that, the Minister also assisted Jokowi on his working visit to Central Kalimantan to check vaccination progress and inaugurate the Balikpapan-Samboja section of the new Balikpapan-Samarinda toll road. They also inspected an artifcial canal, which will serve as a waterway to the country’s future capital city in East Kalimantan.

“Jokowi looked comfortable and relied on MoD Prabowo on several
occasions. Prabowo seemed to show his respect to Jokowi as his chief,” he said.

Adi highlights that Jokowi appears satisfed with MoD Prabowo’s performance as Defense Minister. He said this was evident from Jokowi’s attending the Komcad appointment from beginning to end. Reciprocally, MoD Prabowo’s support for Jokowi’s policies is also evident in the COVID-19 management, the establishment of the new capital city and the formation of Komcad, which is a legacy of Jokowi’s frst administration.

Thus, Adi asserts that MoD Prabowo, the Chairman of the Gerindra Party, should be seriously considered in the 2024 Presidential Election. “MoD Prabowo’s experience and achievements in the Defense Ministry will surely complement the public perception of him,” he concluded. (Dessy Aipipidely)