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Roemah, Coffee, Eatery, and Hub: Sells Culture, Makes You Feel at Home

Grilled Rice ala Roemah. (Photo: Kartika Indah)

IO – Passing along Depok main road, near the campus of the University of Indonesia and Gunadharma University, there is a “roemah” with industrial minimalist design. This L-shaped house looks eye-catching and unique, which seems to invite motorists who cross the road in front of it to stop at a cafe called Roemah, Coffee, Eatery, and Hub. 

Apart from being a parking area for cars and motorbikes, it is seating for cafe visitors who want to enjoy the fresh breeze. Benches and tables are neatly arranged, under the shade of several trees. The outside seating is a favorite spot for visitors. 

The interior of the cafe is no less interesting. Following the outside, it is dominated by monochromatic colors giving a hint of industrial. The cafe design looks simple and modern, with Instagrammable angles. There is a shelf filled with books near the entrance to the air-conditioned room for non-smoking visitors, while smokers are invited to sit outside of the cafe. 

Sells Culture. 

Sjaaf Rhisjad Daud Djavatri, Supervisor of Roemah, Coffee, Eatery, and Hub, said the cafe owners are people who have basic skills in the food and beverage (F&B) field. Roemah was founded one year ago, on November 11, 2019, to be precise. Although it is classified as a new cafe, Roemah has become a hangout place for students, the public, and families. 

Following its philosophy, “home” is a place to gather, interact, and synergize together. Quoting from Instagram @roemah_eateryhub, this is not a story about coffee, food, or romance. It is about a place that presents the various stories of each individual in it. Connectivity with one another, emotions, attachments, attractions, concepts, a “home” for everything. 

“Not just a name, Roemah is a new concept that we are believed to be able to create attachment, comfort and pleasure for you with all our family members,” again quoting Instagram cafe @roemah_eateryhub. 

According to the man familiarly called Icad, Roemah sells their culture more. Therefore, the Roemah team will be friendly and fun for customers. Customers are not kings, but Roemah sees customers as friends who visit their homes. 

However, the Roemah team is also smart, seeing the character of the customers who come, whether they can be fun or be serious characters. This is a concern because the line between fun and impolite is very thin. “Some people who used to be customers became close, like friends, because we sell culture. That is our specialty,” said Icad. 

Visitors who come to Roemah, besides being able to hang out while enjoying food, can also work or do assignments, because Wi-Fi is available. When the cafe first opened, most of Roemah’s visitors were students. However, during the COVID-19 pandemic, when students did not go to college and returned to their respective homes, many family visitors came. Therefore, all cafe rooms that were originally smoking rooms are divided into smoking and non-smoking areas. 

Featured Menu. 

Initially, Roemah served a lot of light menus and traditional menus. However, because many families come, Roemah also presents new menus with heavy foods that families are looking to eat together. 

Roemah serves excellent items, such as Grilled Rib and Rib Soup with special Roemah spices. Icad said that Roemah dared to guarantee a refund if a visitor complained about this Ribs menu. Roemah also serves a Steak menu which includes their new menu. 

There is also a menu of Fish and Chips, Fried Noodles, Grilled/Fried Chicken, Mixed Rice, Soto Ayam, and others that are loved by families. The Nasi Goreng menu, both Chicken Fried Rice and Seafood, is also recommended. Roemah also serves a rice bowl menu, namely Chicken Sambal Matah. 

In addition, Roemah also serves frozen snack menus that they process themselves (homemade). Favorite snack menus include Risoles, Lumpia, Cakwee, Fried Bakso Tofu, Fried Banana, Toast, Fried Martabak, and so on. 

For drinks, Roemah offers Es Kopi Susu Roemah Palm Sugar. The palm sugar used is self-processed. There is also Kopi Roemah Pandan, a house blend espresso from Roemah, made from fresh milk and pandan syrup. Contemporary menus such as Mango Yakult, Lychee Yakult, Banana Yakult, Mango Squash, and Lychee Squash are also available at Roemah. Also, there are Espresso, Cappuccino, Americano, Flat White, Cafe Latte, and so on. 

For coffee, currently, Roemah serves Cianjur robusta coffee and Takengon arabica coffee. For the manual brew, Roemah serves Gayo White arabica coffee. “People have their coffee preferences. In the past, there were many types of coffee, such as Flores and Bali, but during the pandemic, the number of choices was reduced, ”explained Icad. 

In addition, Roemah serves traditional drinks such as Wedang Bandrek, Wedang Uwuh, and Wedang Jahe Lemon, as well as Wedang Kopi. At Roemah, visitors can also order Es Cendol and Es Cincau, which not all cafes serve as traditional drinks on the menu. There is also a menu of Fruit Ice and a variety of Fruit Juices, as well as several types of tea such as Lychee Tea, Teh Tarik, and various chocolate drinks. 

During the COVID-19 pandemic and the implementation of Large- Scale Social Restrictions (PSBB), Roemah sold 1 liter of Coffee. Roemah sells the 1-liter coffee using homemade palm sugar and several kinds of syrup. Roemah style coffee liters include Roemah Original Coffee and Roemah Milk Coffee with original flavors, hazelnut, vanilla, pandan, caramel, signature sanger, and signature cold brew. 

Roemah cafe has a seating capacity of around 120. Usually, the cafe is crowded on weekends, starting from Saturday night, Sunday night, and Sunday. Normally the cafe is open from 14.00 WIB to 22.00 WIB; it tends to be more crowded at night. Roemah also accepts events such as weddings, reunions, and so on. 

At the age of one year, Roemah also sells T-shirt merchandise. “In the future, we are thinking of opening branches and renovating, but because this is a new cafe, we are currently following its developments,” said Icad. (Kartika Indah)

Beautiful silence at Maria Tritis Cave

(Photo: Caecilia Linggarjati)

IO – Gunung Kidul in Yogyakarta is famous for its lovely beaches. Along the coast there are limestone hills with fascinating caves. Among these is Maria Tritis Cave, a place of pilgrimage for Catholics. 

The name “Tritis” comes from the Javanese word tumaritis, which means “dripping water”. Even now, there is still water flowing from the stalactites in the cave ceiling. The natural stalactites add beauty to the cave. 

In the past, Tritis was known as a haunted place. It is said that the princes of the Mataram Kingdom came to this place to meditate. Approaching the 1974 Christmas celebration, a priest heard about the beauty of this Tritis cave from a local child. Then the idea came up to hold a Christmas celebration service in the cave. 

In 1977 the Tritis cave officially became the Maria Tritis Cave. The statue of the Virgin Mary at that time was made of white stone. Later, the statue of Mother Mary was replaced with a smaller black stone statue. 

It takes about 1.5 hours journey to the cave from Yogyakarta, without congestion. The distance is approximately 52 km. 

Usually, tourists also stop by the beaches around the cave. However, for some reason that day I was wearing a green shirt. According to the beliefs of the people of Yogyakarta, it is a big taboo to wear green clothes on the south coast. As a Javanese, I frankly don’t dare to violate this taboo. 

Before the trip, we stopped by to shop for drinks and snacks for the trip. If you are still hungry and dare to try “extreme” culinary delights, there are many fried insect traders along the way. I once tried fried grasshoppers while on vacation in Cambodia. The taste of the meat is delicious too. The problem is it takes time to peel the skin which can make us stare at the insects for a while. Over time, you can lose your appetite. 

Arriving at Tritis Cave, we don’t have to worry about getting hungry, since there are many food vendors there. There are also young coconut traders who are ready to provide a fresh drink. They also have medicinal green coconut, if you need it. There are also some contemporary snacks you usually see in elementary schools in Jakarta, such as cilok and chili powdered macaroni. 

The road to the cave is quite challenging for people who are not in good physical shape. Although the road has been paved, there are steep inclines and descents. The good news is that there is special transportation for elderly residents to take them to Maria Cave. For those of you who are young and strong, it’s great to limber up your legs after 1.5 hours of driving from the city. 

It’s true, as people say, the stalactite cave is truly beautiful. Catholics perform their services praying while lighting candles. If you don’t pray, there are seats available to celebrate the silence, coolness, and beauty in the cave. 

Returning to Yogyakarta, we stopped by a fried chicken restaurant on the edge of Gunung Kidul road. The fried chicken and chili sauce was delicious, but the service was slow. 

On the way home, I realized there are many interesting places on the Gunung Kidul national road. One of them is the Amaryllis Flower Garden, which went viral on Indonesian social media; thus, a lot of local tourists take photos there. The tourists who took pictures did not take care to make sure that the flowers were not damaged. (Caecilia Linggarjati)

RIP Ricky Jacobi: The legend’s final goal

Ricky Jacobi, a lifetime for football. (Photo: Instagram)

IO – The Indonesian football world isin mourning. The legendary strikerRicky Jacobi passed away on Saturdaymorning, November 21 atMintohardjo Navy Hospital, Jakarta.He was buried in Tanah Kusir PublicCemetery, the afternoon of the sameday. Ricky died of a heart attackwhile playing at Field A, Gelora BungKarno, Senayan.

At that time Ricky was playingin Trofeo Medan Selection. After 15minutes of playing for the “Medan”team against the “Rap-Rap” team,Ricky scored a beautiful goal. Receivingfeedback from the left side,he turned around and fired a shot,a goal.

When he was about to cheer,suddenly he collapsed, face downand unconscious. First aid was administered,there was a pulse, Rickywas then rushed to the hospital, buthis life could not be saved. The legendleaves after scoring the last goal.Ricky died on the gridiron, playingthe sport that became his life.

Remembering Ricky Jacobi isreminiscing about the glimmers ofIndonesia’s past football triumphs.Ricky was the team captain whenIndonesia broke into the semifinalsof the 1986 Asian Games in Seoul, South Korea, and when the Red andWhite Team won the first gold medalat the 1987 Jakarta SEA Games.

Born with the name Ricky Jacobin Medan, March 12, 1963, he beganto shine when he strengthened PSMSJr. and brought back the 1980 SuratinCup. After strengthening PSMS Jr.in Suratin Cup, strengthening PSMSin the Top 6 of the 1980 PSSI MainDivision and the 1980 ASEAN JuniorFootball Championship, Ricky Jacoband Edy Harto were recruited by aclub owned by Sigit Harjojudanto,son of former Indonesian PresidentSoeharto, Arseto, who was then headquarteredin Jakarta and then movedto Solo.

Ricky became an icon in Arseto; hewas also a mainstay of the Indonesiannational team. Ricky was nicknamedPaul Mariner Indonesia. Mariner wasa striker for the England nationalteam at that time.

Ricky is an inspiration to Indonesianchildren. Almost all football fankids want to be like Ricky.

Success in the 1986 Seoul AsianGames and the 1987 Jakarta SEAGames, Ricky caught the attention ofthe Japanese club, Matsushita. Herehis name changed to Jacobi. Unfortunately,he failed to adapt to the Landof the Rising Sun and returned toplay for Arseto. Before moving, Rickygave Arseto the title of the Main FootballLeague Competition (Galatama)in 1992. Ricky then moved to BPDCentral Java and retired from PSISSemarang in 1995.

Several clubs offered him the opportunityto work as a coach, butRicky chose another path. He decidedto take the early childhooddevelopment path by establishingthe Ricky Jacobi Football School inSenayan.

Ricky wanted to pass on the basicknowledge of football to children, hedoesn’t even collect fees for childrenaged 7-12 years. “Every child musthave the same opportunity to achievethe dream of becoming a footballplayer,” he said at that time.

He was married to a former jumpingathlete, Harly Ramayani, theyhad two daughters, Arsyi and Sandi,who are involved in diving.

To honor his services, the Ministryof Youth and Sports will proposethe name ABC Field, Senayan, to bechanged to Ricky Jacobi Field. However,the authority to give the namerests with the Ministry of State Secretariat.

Ricky is now gone. He who lovesfootball ends his life’s activities alsoon the football field. What a beautifuldeparture. Goodbye, legend. Thankyou for the achievements you havegiven to the country. You will not be forgotten. (rp)

Putri Kus Wisnu Wardani; One thousand cellphones on Pertiwi Indonesia’s birthday

Putri Kus Wisnu Wardani symbolically hands over a cellphone to the 1,000 Cellphone Donation Program for needy students. (Photo: Pertiwi)

IO – Putri Kus Wisnu Wardani, founder and advisor of Pertiwi Indonesia, is happy that the Foundation is now two years old and can contribute to the country. 

On the second anniversary, Pertiwi Indonesia provided 1,000 cellphones to elementary, middle, and high school students in Jakarta and surrounding areas (Jabodetabek) to help them follow the online learning process during the Covid-19 pandemic. Apart from Jabodetabek, units were handed over in several areas in Eastern Indonesia, as well as other areas in Indonesia, such as Samosir Island. 

The provision of the learning tools was symbolically held in Jakarta, Saturday, November 21 by Putri Kus Wisnu Wardani. 

“Pertiwi Indonesia is an association of Indonesian women exploring their potential, increasing and sharing knowledge to advance themselves, fellow women, society and automatically the country and nation,” said Putri Kus, who is also a member of the Presidential Advisory Council in her remarks at the anniversary ceremony. 

Symbolically, Putri handed over her cellphone to Frida Putri Dania, a grade 6 student at SDN Margahayu VIII, Bekasi, West Java. Frida is the oldest child from a poor family. Her father worked as an online motorcycle taxi driver while her mother could not work because she had to care for her second child who suffered from acute heart problems. Despite having to wait for her father to come home from work to be able to study online or have to borrow a neighbor’s cellphone, Frida still does well in class by ranking second in her school. 

Amid the Covid-19 pandemic atmosphere, the event took place while implementing strict health protocols by conducting a rapid test for all the guests present. 

During this Covid-19 pandemic, Pertiwi has helped medical personnel and people in need. Various pieces of training and webinars were held, such as the development of Micro-Small-Medium-Enterprises, education, culture, and the latest topics that can inspire women to solve various problems during a pandemic. 

Companies and communities that help Pertiwi include Mustika Ratu, CIRI, Cavotec, 686 Alumni, Ika Teladan, Taruna Bakti 86, Dharma Pertiwi, Institut Indonesia, and other donors. 

In appreciation of the many activities of Pertiwi Indonesia, Grace Batubara, the wife of the Minister of Social Affairs, expressed her gratitude, because Pertiwi has collected data on citizens who are still in dire need of assistance, including those affected by Covid-19. 

“Their enthusiasm will continue to resonate for a better Indonesia. Thank you for helping the Ministry of Social Affairs to be present everywhere. Hopefully, Pertiwi will continue to care for and build our country,” said Grace. 

Attending the second anniversary of Pertiwi Indonesia Nurmala Kartini Sjahrir (Indonesian Pertiwi Honorary Council), Sidarto Danusubroto (Indonesian Pertiwi Honorary Council) and Miranda Gultom as a member of the Indonesian Pertiwi Advisory Board, Chair of the Indonesian Pertiwi education sector, Anggia Tjaja, as well as the Central Executive and Branches Chairpersons from Jakarta, Bogor, Bekasi, South Tangerang, Depok, as well as the donors who have been actively helping Pertiwi Indonesia. 

Operational Head of Pertiwi Indonesia Shinta Omar explained that during the seven months of this pandemic, Pertiwi had run a donation program of medical devices and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to 45 hospitals and 70 clinics (Puskesmas). Pertiwi also distributed 22,000 packages of basic food assistance from the President in 15 days in Jabodetabek, and now what is continuing is the Cellphone Program for needy students. (rp)

Indonesia’s teachers: Once the nation’s patriots and pioneers, but what about their roles now?

Illustration: Agung Wahyudi/IO

IO – A teacher is an unsung hero in educating the nation. Everyone is a teacher. Every house is a school. Education doesn’t merely take place at school, but also at home, on the streets, and everywhere else.  

In Sanskrit, “guru” literally means “a dispeller of darkness”. In Hinduism, a teacher is a symbol of a holy place, seen as the source of knowledge (vidya). Someone who is a master or expert in a certain field. In Buddhism, a teacher is someone who guides others toward the path of truth and righteousness, even seen by his students as an incarnation of Buddha or Bodhisattva. This means a teacher plays a central role in the formation of a person’s personality. A guru carries a “weighty” role, beyond simply that of a teacher. In contrast, the definition of a teacher in the Indonesian language is someone whose profession is to teach, educate, train, mentor, assess and evaluate students’ work.  

Teachers in Indonesia have played a central and dynamic role in the long history of the nation. In the ancient kingdoms, teachers had an important role, educating citizens so that they would be familiar with the royal system and decorum, including how to respect the king. Relics found in temples built during the Hindu-Buddhist period, believed to made using sophisticated technology as well as many inscriptions carved in stone and manuscripts written on dried palm leaves, have shown the outsize role a teacher played in ancient societies.  

Even though there is little written about the role of teachers in the era of kingdoms, we can gauge the importance of teachers at that time from the relics they left behind. It is impossible for a book to be written (in Sanskrit) and a gigantic temple like Borobudur or towering temple like Prambanan to be built without the role of a teacher. The role of a Brahman Indonesia’s teachers: Once the nation’s patriots and pioneers, but what about their roles now? is to teach religion, but imparting principles of literacy or mathematics and engineering with sophisticated technology must have been done by a professional teacher.  

Based on relics of a royal past, the role of teachers at that time can be traced. Maybe they weren’t called teacher, but “empu” or master, but their role was the same, namely, to educate the people. If a teacher now educates the citizens, then a master then educated the royal subjects. So “empu” is not just someone skilled in making a kris (a dagger with a wavy blade), but someone who has certain expertise, both in making tools for daily needs, as well as creating works of art.  

During the Dutch colonial era, the teacher was a pioneer in the advancement and independence of the nation. Almost all central figures of the independence movement were people trained to become teachers and graduates of medical schools – or they had been a teacher before, such as Soekarno, who had served as a mathematics teacher at Tamansiswa Junior High School in Bandung.  

Long before the era of Raden Ajeng Kartini and Suwardi Soerjaningrat (later known as Ki Hadjar Dewantara), there was a teacher in Mandailing Natal who played a vital role in bringing progress to North Sumatran society through education. His name is Sati Nasution, and he was popularly known as Willem Iskander.  

Born under a birth name Sati Nasution and noble title Sutan Iskandar in March, 1840 in Pidoli Lombang, South Tapanuli, North Sumatra, he was the youngest son of King Tinating, an 11th generation descendant of the Nasution clan. He only entered a two-year elementary school, established by Godon in Payabungan, while working as a clerk, at the age of 13…  

Godon was a close friend of Eduard Douwes Dekker, a.k.a Multatuli. In 1857, when Godon returned to the Netherlands, he took Sati with him. Sati was initially taught by a teacher named Dapperen, but then continued under the tutelage of Guilaume Groen van Prinsterer (1801- 1871) in Arhem in 1858. It was during this time that Sati Nasution changed his name to Williem Iskander.  

Williem Iskander then obtained a scholarship to enroll in a teacher training school in the Netherlands, returning to his homeland in December 1861. In March 1862, Williem Iskander received a decree which gave him a permit to establish the teacher-training school he had long dreamed of. Together with the Tanabato villagers, he managed to set up three classrooms using simple building materials such as bamboo, wooden planks, and thatched roof. 

 One of Williem Iskander’s pioneering contributions was the establishment of the first teacher training school with cultural center in Sumatra. In addition to training future teachers, his school also translated Malay-language books in into Mandailing so that they can be easily understood by the local community. 

 William Iskander also wrote poetry and prose, which was later published into a book titled Si Bulus-bulus Si Rumbuh-rumbuk, which contains his thoughts. His works were mostly satire aimed at the Dutch colonialists. In one of his poems, he wrote: Adong alak nuar, Na mian di Panyabungan, Tibu ia aruar, Baon ia madung busungan (There is a foreigner, who resides in Payabungan – Quickly should he leave, as his belly is already bulging)  

Through his verses, William Iskander fought for the freedom of his people. Unfortunately, his life was very short. He passed away at the age of 36. But later his pioneering role as a teacher would be continued by RA Kartini, Ki Hadjar Dewantara, and Tengku Mohammad Syafeii.  

RA Kartini was a teacher dedicated to promoting literacy and women’s emancipation. This can be seen from her correspondence with Mrs. Abendanon which was later published under the title Habis Gelap Terbitlah Terang (From Darkness Comes Light). She was mostly concerned with women’s literacy, to enable them to advance socially and be on an equal status with men.  

Meanwhile, Ki Hadjar Dewantara (KHD) was a teacher and freedom fighter. Not only did he found the Tamansiswa school with its strong nationalistic and grass-roots character, he also chaired the Education and Culture Commission of the Agency for the Preparatory Work for Indonesian Independence (BPUPKI) and the Indonesian Independence Preparatory Committee (PPKI) that formulated articles 29-32 of the 1945 Constitution. Concurrently, he also served as the first Education and Culture Minister, albeit for only three months. KHD is also known as one of the founders of Gadjah Mada University (UGM) and a figure who laid out the foundation for national education. For his invaluable contribution to Indonesia’s education sector, his birthdate, May 2, 1889, was commemorated as National Education Day.  

In every generation, teachers play a role as pioneers of the nation’s progress and independence. In the early days of independence, the teachers’ role was crucial in providing political support to the newly-founded Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia (NKRI),  as the young nation was still facing many foreign threats. 

Through the Indonesian Teacher Congress in Surakarta on 24-25 November 1945, they agreed that all teachers’ organizations and groups based on alumni, workplace, region, politics, religion and ethnicity are to be eliminated, and in their place should be established a united teachers’ organization that could accommodate all active and retired teachers and education personnel for the sake of NKRI. 

The organization is named the Indonesian Teachers Association (PGRI), which was proclaimed at the closing of the congress on November 25, 1945. This is how November 25 was celebrated as the National Teachers Day. Mobilizing the teachers was important to demonstrate to other countries that the newly-proclaimed independent state of Indonesia was also supported by a strong teacher organization. 

The pioneering work of teachers in the early days of independence could be seen in their imparting the spirit of nationalism and patriotism inside classrooms. Every day millions of Indonesian children are taught to be nationalistic by their teachers through the national anthem. This was crucial in motivating students to take up arms against the first Dutch military aggression in 1947 and the second one in 1949. Their sense of duty to guard the independence from foreign invasion using simple weapons and limited resources cannot be separated from the pioneering role of teachers in fostering a spirit of independence and nationalism in every student. 

But over time, the teachers’ pioneering role started to fade. During the New Order regime (1966-1998), especially in the first decade, teachers who served in the regions or rural areas still played a prominent role as agents of village development. Elementary school teachers who were posted in rural or remote areas not only carried out teaching duties in their classrooms, but also acted as administrators of Village Community Resilience Institution (LKMD) and Village Community Institutions (LMD) or as initiators of the Family Welfare Guidance (PKK) program in villages. So they didn’t only teach in class, but were also drivers for rural development. 

That dual role of teachers began to diminish since the late 1980s when increasing numbers of villagers had completed junior or senior high school, with some even with university degrees. Previously, it was difficult to find educated villagers who could take up positions in the management of village institutions. However, in the rural areas and inland or the coastal areas, the dual role was still prevalent. 

Teachers who worked in urban areas, on the contrary, experienced a process of dehumanization, because in the 1970s cities in Indonesia began to grew rapidly along with it rising living costs. On the other hand, teacher salaries remained low. That’s why many teachers had to moonlight in other professions or did odd jobs to survive in the city with their meager salary and runaway cost of living. It was thus not uncommon for teachers to freelance as ojek (motorcycle taxi) drivers. While this was a perfectly legitimate job, when the teachers’ energy was spent more on the streets than in classrooms, they wouldn’t have the time to increase their knowledge and improve their skills, which ultimately affected the quality of their teaching. 

Nowadays, we can say that the pioneering role of the teachers is barely existent. Teachers, on the other hand, have become part of the nation’s problems that need to be resolved. Many of our teachers are unqualified, while the progress of our nation is highly dependent on the quality of our teachers. The future of the nation is at stake if our teachers cannot be relied upon. The population of our teachers is quite large (around four million of civil servant teachers and nonformal teachers paid by honorarium). Even when it comes to sense of nationalism, teachers today are actually part of the problem, because many of them do not exhibit a strong nationalist spirit. 

The loss of the teacher’s pioneering role was followed by the death of the teaching profession. The role of a teacher who also doubles as an educator, mentor, tutor, and motivator has disappeared, and what remains is merely teaching as a means to earn a livelihood and provide for one’s family. 

This is reflected in the behavior of civil servant teachers who have received professional allowances, which means their welfare has also increased. Logically, when their welfare increases, they will be also more committed to become better teachers by upgrading their knowledge and competencies. The hope is that the teachers will use at least 10% of their professional allowance to buy new books, subscribe to magazines that can increase their understanding of the subject they are teaching, watch quality films that can provide inspiration in teaching, and so on. 

But this has turned out to be wishful thinking. It is estimated that fewer than one per cent actually do this. An interesting phenomenon that appears in many areas (municipalities/regencies) is the increasing number of married couples, either one or both of whom are teachers, who have divorced or are involved in extramarital affairs. This is a phenomenon that is seen in civil service teachers. 

Nonformal teachers, either those teaching in public schools or private schools, have a different set of problems. Their biggest problem is welfare because there is no standard income. Presently, there are still nonformal teachers in Java whose monthly salary is under Rp500,000 (around US $35.00), well below the provincial minimum wage, far from decent and humane. However, people still want to take up the job for different reasons. Firstly, to seek social status, especially for university graduates looking for behind-the-desk jobs, regardless of the poor pay (under the assumption that only the school, oneself, and possibly one’s family members know about the salary; his neighbors won’t). Secondly, young teachers hoping to be one day appointed as civil servants and the welfare that comes with it. Thirdly, there are no other jobs available for them if they choose to stay in their hometown/village. 

Their lives are even worse off than factory workers who generally receive regional minimum wages, even though their education level is lower than that of teachers. Permanent teachers in private schools also experience similar problems. Their level of welfare varies, depending on the financial resources of the school foundation. On the other hand, the staff regulations at foundations are so strict that there is no time for these permanent teachers to earn extra income. 

Complicating the matter, our teaching workforce is currently dominated by non-civil servant teachers with various income levels. Based on the Education and Culture Ministry data for the academic year 2019/2020, the number of civil service teachers is 1,288,336 (47.75 per cent) and 420,238 (15.57 per cent) permanent teachers at education foundations. Meanwhile, non-permanent teachers comprise 564 teacher assistants (0.02 per cent), 201,242 regional nonformal teachers (7.46 per cent), and 787,823 non-permanent teachers (29.20 per cent). The proportion of nonformal teachers in educational institutions under the Religious Affairs Ministry is even larger. Of the 750,771 teachers at the early childhood to secondary education level, 624,558 or around 83.2 per cent are nonformal teachers, according to a report by Kompas. 

Based on a survey conducted by the Indonesian Teachers Association in 2020, of the 24,835 nonformal teachers, the majority (64 per cent) earn a salary between Rp250,000-Rp1 million per month. According to the Association for Education and Teachers (P2G), Jakarta is the only city that pays its nonformal teachers the standard provincial minimum wage. 

The problem is that as nonformal teachers have varying level of welfare, it is unfair to expect them to carry out the same duties and responsibilities as their civil servant counterparts and apply the same success indicators, such as minimum completion criteria (KKM). The gap in the quality of education must be resolved by reducing the gap in teacher welfare, especially between civil servant and non-civil servant teachers. 

The crisis of civil servant teachers The teacher problems we are facing today are not merely the fading pioneering role, but also a crisis of civil servant teachers. We do have an excess of teachers, but they are nonformal teachers whose salary and competency standard varies, as mentioned above, so they can’t be relied upon to spearhead the quality improvement of national education standards. Based on the statistics mentioned before, we are lacking civil servant teachers, as they only constitute 47% of the teaching workforce. The remaining 53% are permanent teachers at education foundations and nonformal teachers who teach in public and private schools. There is a shortage of civil servant teachers not only outside Java, but even in municipalities/regencies in Greater Jakarta. 

Meeting the need for civil servant teachers is very important and urgent considering that teachers are the cornerstone of success in education. A poor curriculum in the hands of good teachers will produce good graduates and vice versa. Education in Finland is also known to be top-notch because the teachers there are of the same quality as medical school graduates. Finnish teachers have the same intelligence as doctors and engineers. This means that if national education is to progress, the quality of its teachers must first be upgraded. 

Quality aside, the quantity of teachers is also important, because if the number of teachers is not evenly distributed, there will be gap in quality. Unfortunately, we are faced with a teacher crisis, both in terms of quantity and quality, especially civil servant teachers. If someone says that we have more teachers than we need, then that person is certainly ignorant about the actual problem in the field. Before 2012, we had sufficient numbers of teachers but afterward the number of civil servant teachers continued to shrink every year. 

The teacher crisis is one of the crucial problems in our education system, considering that information technology can’t yet replace the role of teachers, as the pandemic has shown. As teaching moved online, students, teachers, and lecturers alike are starting to feel bored studying from home and crave in-person teaching. Students also complain that the instruction they receive over online teaching is different from in-person teaching. This confirms that a teacher’s role is irreplaceable. Therefore, when there is a crisis of civil servant teachers, it becomes a very crucial issue, because it will hinder learning. 

The government has announced that it will appoint one million teachers with the status of state employees with employment agreement (PPPK), but considering that those who have passed the test in 2019 have not yet received an appointment decree, people are starting to doubt whether the government has the budget for this program. 

Considering that the crisis of civil servant teachers is a serious issue, the government needs to prioritize the measure and policy to fill this need. Advancing the national education without a sufficient number of teachers is unrealistic. Also, we need not compare our quality of national education with that of other countries, because the characteristic of the problem is also different. The number of students in Indonesia is far greater than the total population of Australia, let alone Singapore or Finland, whose population is only around five million people. As our country has diverse geographical barriers, so does the quality of our education. Indeed, we also have many schools whose quality is on par with schools in Singapore, Finland, Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, USA, Britain, and so on. 

The proof of this can be seen from our graduates who continue their education overseas. Most of them didn’t have to go through matriculation and graduated with outstanding performance. This shows that the quality of schools in Indonesia is at the same level as schools in their study destinations. But schools whose quality is far below standard are also numerous because our population is indeed large and diverse. 

Educational quality is greatly influenced by many factors, such as students, teachers, infrastructure and facilities, the learning process, as well as the parents’ involvement in their children’s education at school and at home. Education is a joint responsibility of parents, teachers and the school community. This synergy will create a good learning ecosystem and will eventually produce a good quality education. 

Good schools are not known and choosen for their smart and diligent students, but also by parents who indeed care about their children’s education. In contrast, beleaguered inner-city private schools are often characterized by parents who are indifferent to their children’s education because they are too busy making ends meet. (Ki Darmaningtyas)

Ki Darmaningtyas is an education observer and member of the Association of Taman Siswa Family (PKBTS), Yogyakarta

For Teacher’s Day, Speaker of the House pleads for teachers’ welfare

Chairperson of the Parliament, Puan Maharani. (Photo: Rayi Gigih/IO)

IO – On National Teachers’ Day, which is commemorated every 25 November, the Chairperson of the Parliament, Puan Maharani, urged the government to pay attention and increase the welfare of teachers, especially honorary teachers. According to her, improving the welfare of teachers is considered to have an impact on the quality of Indonesian education. Because of this, the Parliament supports the government’s plan to enable honorary teachers to become government employees with a Contract Agreement (PPPK) in 2021. Based on the government’s plan, there will be one million honorary teachers from public and private schools who will become PPPK. Puan hopes that this plan will be realized. 

“This must be a serious concern, and we at the Indonesian Parliament honorary teachers and the appointment of honorary teachers to become National Civil Employees. This year’s National Teachers’ Day commemoration should be momentum to emphasize our commitment and efforts to improve teacher welfare to improve the quality of education and the competence of Indonesia’s human resources,” said Puan in a press statement, Tuesday (11/25/2020). 

Further, Puan expressed her appreciation to teachers who continue to be committed to educating the nation’s to the Covid-19 pandemic. She agrees that distance learning currently creates extra challenges for teachers in organizing teaching and learning. “Teachers are required to innovate and be creative with distance or online learning models so that some visit their students, in turn, to assist while studying at home. Thank you to the teachers, for their commitment times like this,” added this PDIP politician. 

In line with Puan, Chairman of Commission X Syaiful Huda said that during the 75 years of Indonesia’s independence, teachers had never received proper compensation. “Therefore, on this teacher’s day, I want to say that the agenda for the welfare of our teachers cannot be postponed any more,” he said. 

Furthermore, he encouraged the government to continue to improve the skills and competencies of teachers so that they can adapt to the needs of the times. Regarding the need for competence, Huda assessed that the problem was not only with the teachers themselves but those from upstream to downstream. In this case, since the education process at the Education Personnel, Education Institute to the policies of the Ministry of Education and Culture as a large education center to be able to accelerate the process of increasing teacher competence. This is because, based on the results of the evaluation, many policies are often only lip service, for example about teacher certification. 

Teacher certification does not mean anything; those who are not certified are sometimes better teachers. This means that there is an ineffective system that must be fixed.  

Therefore, I invite this momentum, let’s support the sincerity and dedication of our teachers by building new competencies of our teachers,” said this PKB politician. 

As is well known, as a tribute to teachers, the government of the Republic of Indonesia through Presidential Decree Number 78 of 1994, stipulates November 25, apart from being the PGRI anniversary, as National Teacher’s Day as well. Law Number 14 of 2005 concerning Teachers and Lectures confirms that teachers  are professional educators with the main task of educating, teaching, guiding, directing, training, assessing, and evaluating students in early childhood education through formal education, basic education, and secondary education. 

During the Covid-19 pandemic, Indonesian teachers were still actively seeking the best solutions for learning to take place. Some teachers arrange children into small groups and are visited in turns. Some enter the school using a rotating schedule with very strict health protocols. Some come to the students’ homes and discuss matters with the students’ parents to help with the teaching and learning process at home. Some are looking for an internet signal across the river, and so on. “Happy National Teacher’s Day! Raise the spirit to realize the freedom to learn.” (dan)

Minister of Education and Culture to allow schools to reopen in January

Minister of Education and Culture Nadiem Makarim. (Photo: SETKAB RI)

IO – The Central Government has authorized Regional Governments to implement face-to-face learning in schools starting the even semester of the 2020-2021 academic year, in January 2021. “The Central Government, through a Joint Decree of 4 Ministers, has adjusted its policy and authorized Regional Governments, Regional Pffices, or Minister of Religious Affairs Offices to determine the issuance of face-to-face learning permits in schools under their authority. Therefore, Regional Governments and schools who believe that they are ready to carry forward with schools face-to-face must prepare themselves from now on until the year ends,” said Minister of Education and Culture Nadiem Makarim, in an online press conference on Friday (20/11/2020).

Nadiem stated that Regional Governments can issue the permit to reopen schools simultaneously or gradually. They are free to determine which schools get reopened first, based on their ability and readiness to strictly implement health protocols during face-to-face learning. “These schools are appointed, based on the results of the relevant Regional Heads of their readiness for face-to-face learning. They have satisfied all health protocol criteria in the checklist for this readiness,” he said.

Therefore, schools may be reopened for face-to-face learning in January 2021 case-by-case, not based on the COVID-19 zoning location of the school itself. Earlier, the Government only allows schools in Green and Yellow Zone to implement face-to-face learning. “The zoning map is no longer the blanket requirement for permitting face-to-face learning. Now, Regional Governments make the call, as they can select individual schools in their areas in more detail,” he said.

532,000 educational units had applied for face-to-face learning permits by November 2020, while 87% of schools throughout Indonesia still educate their students remotely or online.

42,48% of these have filled in a health protocol checklist: First, availability of clean and decent sanitation facilities, including toilets, hand-washing facilities that include soap and running water, and provision of disinfectants.

Second, Access to sufficient health service facilities. Third, implementing mask-wearing compliance. Fourth, possession and use of thermoguns. Fifth, mapping educational unit members who are vulnerable to COVID-19, and finally, obtaining the approval of the School Committee and/or Parent/ Teacher Associations.

Even though certain schools and regions may have decided to restart faceto-face learning, the students’ parents get the final say in wather they will allow their children to go to school or not. “Basically, face-to-face learning will be allowed, not mandated,” Nadiem said.

Negative Impact

A learning survey held in October 2020 on 532,000 educational units, starting from Elementary School to High School, shows that 226,000 schools or about 42.5% responded positively to the idea of remote learning, and only 13% demand schools in face-to-face mode. It further found that remote learning can exert a negative impact on students. “More than 68 million educational participants participate in remote learning, with various geographical, social, and economic conditions. Those blessed by living in areas with good internet connections and in families with sufficient financial strength to ensure continuous connectivity have no problems: teachers can teach them online using various apps and they can perform group discussions using social media. However, it is not so easy for those living with weak internet access. For them, we try to lessen the gap using other media such as TVRI and RRI, and we even have teachers visit the students’ homes instead,” the Minister said.

Nadiem stated that constant remote learning might turn into a permanent risk that may cause dropouts, as many children are forced or encouraged by their parents to work. “This is also due to the worsening of families’ economy because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents are taking their children out of schools because they think that schools don’t play much role in improving children’s competence during remote learning. In the end, many children end up stopping learning even remotely. The longer the condition lasts, the bigger the risk of this happening,” he said. The lack of interaction with teachers, schoolmates, and the outside world due to the pandemic increases the stress of remote learning among children and their parents. “Other than this psycho-social pressure, there is a real risk of increased child abuse during prolonged remote learning. The prolonged increase of parental frustration due to reduced income and added responsibility of teaching the children at home might cause them to lash out on their children at home. Teachers do not have the capability to detect any incidence of household violence, and this is one our most important considerations on the matter,” he said.

House Supports Reopening

Chairman of House of Representatives (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat – “DPR”) Commission X Syaiful Huda supports the plan to reopen schools for face-to-face learning. However, as always, it must be accompanied by strict health protocols because COVID-19 infection continues. In fact, it shows a trend of increasing within the past few weeks.

“Reopening schools for face-to-face learning is currently a necessity, especially in the regions. Remote learning is ineffective because of lack of proper facilities there. For example, students in the regions tend not to have internet-accessing gadgets and internet access in the regions is uneven, while they must still learn somehow. In some regions, children literally cannot study at all because schools are shut because of COVID-19 and there is no way to teach them remotely. This is reported by the World Bank: that Indonesia might suffer from loss of learning for a large number of our children,” he said.

Huda stated that the threat of loss of learning is not a petty one, because it causes a domino effect that our children fail to get the necessary competencies according to their age level. “We received reports that the number of child workers has increased during the pandemic, as they are forced to assist their parents to survive economic problems,” he said. “Reopening schools for face-to-face learning returns educational participants to their proper learning ecosystem. Most of them have lost the learning ambience and atmosphere that only face-to-face schooling provide. They are practically released from routines and discipline of learning at school. By doing this, the students will return to the routines that they need to put their mindset into learning.”

Huda requests that the Government ensure that schools are reopened only after they satisfy the necessary requirements, such as available disinfectant chambers or other facilities, soap and faucets (if possible, sinks) for hand-washing, and flexible studying.

“This includes schools ensuring that physical distance is maintained by regulating seats in classes and rotating their school time so that everyone gets to experience schooling properly. Learning periods must also be flexible. For example, each student need only come to school 2-3 days a week and study there for 3-4 hours in turn,” he said.

The Government must further provide a special budget to ensure that the necessary facilities to implement health protocols are really available in schools. “The World Bank reports that 40% of schools in Indonesia still do not have toilets, while 50% of schools do not have sinks with running water, a necessity during this pandemic. We hope that a special budget will be allocated to ensure the availability and proper operation of these essential facilities before

schools reopen for real,” Huda said.

He further stated that the Ministry of Education and Culture and Regional Government must intensively coordinate with relevant parties for reopening schools for face-to-face learning. It is necessary to ensure that face-to-face learning is performed under strict health protocols to avoid possible generation of new COVID-19 infection clusters. “The Joint Decree of four Ministers state that Regional Government through its COVID-19 Task Force, schools, and the students’ parents all have their equally important roles to play in allowing face-to-face learning. They must intensively coordinate, in order to make quick decisions according to the dynamics in the field, including immediately stopping face-to-face learning in any school where even a single teacher, staff, or student is reactive for COVID-19,” Huda said.

Government builds 61 dams: agricultural production up to 200 percent?

There have been 16 dams completed since 2014. The remaining 45 will be built by 2024. (Photo: PUPR Doc)

IO – Supporting President Joko Widodo’s government policies to maintain national food security, Minister of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR) Basuki Hadimuljono said the government is now focusing on building 61 new dams, a target to be completed by 2024. At least 16 dams have been completed since 2014. In 2020, the Ministry of PUPR has completed construction on two dams, namely, the Tukul Dam in Pacitan and the Tapin Dam in South Kalimantan. The Tukul Dam has a capacity of 8.68 million cubic meters, to supply 600 hectares of irrigation and 300 liters of raw water per second. Meanwhile, the Tapin Dam has a capacity of 56.77 million cubic meters for irrigation water supply covering an area of 5,472 hectares. 

Basuki said the project of building 15 new dams was planned to start again in 2021. The Ministry expects to continue the construction of 36 other dams not yet completed, targeted for 2023 at the latest. The construction of these 36 dams will be completed in the 2020-2023 period, for an average of nine dams per year. Inasmuch as dam construction takes three to four years, budgeting schemes for dam construction extend over multiple years. “We propose no new dam construction because we expect to be rather busy on the fourth-year with the presidential election. Our new dam construction will start again in 2021 while still completing the 36 dams,” he explained. 

Basuki said that the management of water and irrigation resources would be continued to support sustainable agricultural production; there is also the potential for raw water, energy, flood control, and tourism, which will foster the local economy. “The dam construction was followed by the construction of the irrigation network. Thus, a dam that is built at a high cost can be beneficial because the water will certainly flow to the farmers’rice fields,”he said. 

According to Basuki, if the construction of 61 dams is completed within the next 4 years, the water supply to the irrigation network will increase by around 19 percent or as much as 1,169 ha. That way, all of these reservoirs will increase the cropping index as well as agricultural production to support the national food security program. This will make up for the fact that until now agricultural activities still depend a lot on irrigation systems. “Irrigation and agricultural areas alone depend on rain. For irrigated or agricultural areas it only rains 100 percent. This means that it is harvested once a year because it depends on rain,” he explained. 

Meanwhile, with the ones that rely on a run-off irrigation system, production can be increased by 120-150 percent. This will be maximized by using the dam as water storage so that the production rate can go up to 200 percent. “But with a dam, it can increase 200 percent or more. This means that in March- April and September-October it can be planted more than twice. If it is more than twice, it means that agricultural production can be increased,” he said. 

The Pidekso Dam, which was worked on by the Bengawan Solo River Basin Center (BBWS) is one of the National Strategic Projects (PSN) in the field of water resources to realize national water and food security. “This multifunctional dam with a capacity of 25 million cubic meters is planned to be able to irrigate an irrigation area of 1,500 hectares. The irrigation water from the dam will increase the planting intensity from 133 percent (2000 ha) to 240 percent (3600 ha). It is hoped that the completion of this dam will encourage economic recovery after the Covid-19 pandemic, especially in the agricultural sector,” explained Minister Basuki. 

This dam, located in the upper reaches of the Bengawan Solo River, also has the benefit of providing 300 liters per second of raw water in the districts of Wonogiri, Sukoharjo, Solo City, and their surroundings. Its hydroelectric potential of 0.5 MW will be useful; the Dam is very much needed as a flood control mechanism and as a  conservation and tourism area, so that it can help improve the welfare of the surrounding community. 

Head of BBWS Bengawan Solo Agus Rudyanto said that after the completion of phase I construction, currently a tender process is being carried out for the construction of phase II. The entire dam construction target will be completed by 2022. “For the construction of phase, I which has been completed in the form of road access, dam cover building, circumvention tunnel, and the river diversion process has also been completed. In stage two, the construction of the dam body and complementary facilities will be continued, as well as the dam’s electrical hydromechanical instrument,” he explained. 

Construction of phase I of the Pidekso Dam was carried out by the contractor PT Pembangunan Perumahan (PP) with State Budget amounting to IDR 436.9 billion. Furthermore, it is estimated that the second phase of development will require a budget of IDR 376 billion. 

The reservoir, with the upright core random fill-type has a spill  way on the left side of the dam. The spillway section is divided into 4 zones, namely, the inlet zone, transition zone, chuteway zone, and channel carrier zone. The main dam height of this dam is 44 meters, the peak width is 10 meters, and the total crest length is 383 meters. (dan)

Jokowi instructs officials to tighten COVID rules during Regional Elections

Minister of Home Affairs Tito Karnavian. (Photo: SETKAB RI)

IO – The Simultaneous Regional Elections are to be held in a matter of days, on 9 December 2020. Naturally, President Joko Widodo will focus his attention on the events. To avoid COVID-19 from ruining the Elections, “I ask that the Minister of Home Affairs, the Chief of ediPolice, and the Regional COVID Task Force to pay special attention to the Regional Elections that are only two weeks away. This is also necessary so that our huge task, to resolve the COVID disease and revive the economy, does not get interrupted,” he said as he opened the closed meeting broadcast on the Presidential Secretariat’s YouTube channel on Monday (23/11/2020). 

Jokowi instructs his staff to uphold regulations and implement strict health protocol discipline for electoral organizers, voters, candidates, and the public, especially during final campaigning and voting day. He further instructs them to prevent any activity that might potentially violate health protocols, as early as possible. “We do not want the Regional Elections to create momentum for new Coronavirus infection clusters. The Task Forces, the Committees, the Governors must remain alert. The strategy that we have announced from the start is to take strict control of both brakes and gas – let’s not slack off and allow for a second wave to occur. Therefore, prevention and intervention of activities that violate the protocols must be executed strictly and as early as possible,” he said. 

270 regions will be participating in the 2020 Regional Elections on 9 December. They include the election of Governors, Mayors, and Regents, all with strict health protocols to prevent further spread of COVID-19. The latest records of the COVID-19 Task Force show that 17 regencies and municipalities in Indonesia included in the Simultaneous Regional Elections while being in the Red Zone are: Gunungsitoli (North Sumatra), Payakumbuh (West Sumatra), Tanjung Pinang (Riau Islands), Bandar Lampung (Lampung), Pesawaran (Lampung), Cilegon (Banten), Bandung (West Java), Karawang (West Java), Tasikmalaya (West Java), Boyolali (Central Java), Kendal (Central Java), Pemalang (Central Java), Sukoharjo (Central Java), Sragen (Central Java), East Barito (Central Kalimantan), Kutai Kartanegara (East Kalimantan), and East Kutai (East Kalimantan). (dan)

36% corruption cases involve political parties, KPK anti-corruption education program

KPK’s Director of Community Education and Service (Pendidikan dan Pelayanan Masyarakat – “Dikyanmas”) Giri Suprapdiono. (Photo: Prive. Doc)

IO – The Corruption Eradication Commission (Komisi Pemberantasan Korupsi – “KPK”) states that 36% of the cases it handles involve political party circles. Therefore, KPK is holding a discussion about inserting anti-corruption education with eight political parties. In this event, “Several important points were discussed, and what I think is the most important is the political parties’ commitment to build integrity and anti-corruption culture as the primary capital in corruption eradication,” said KPK’s Director of Community Education and Service (Pendidikan dan Pelayanan Masyarakat – “Dikyanmas”) Giri Suprapdiono in the press conference after the meeting, meant to discuss anti-corruption education in political parties, attended by representatives of the eight political parties, the KPK, the Ministry of Home Affairs, and the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia – “LIPI”), on Monday (23/11/2020). 

The meeting was in the form of a forum group discussion (FGD) hosted by KPK. It was attended by the General Secretary or Vice General of the eight parties, including Great Indonesia Movement (Gerakan Indonesia Raya – “Gerindra”) Party (Ahmad Muzani), National Democrat Party (Johny G. Plate), Prosperous Justice Party (Partai Keadilan Sejahtera – “PKS”) (M. Rozaq), United Development Party (Partai Persatuan Pembangunan – “PPP”) Moh. Qoyum, and National Awakening Party (Partai Kebangkitan Bangsa – “PKB”) (Cucun Ahmad S.) as representatives; as well as the Director of Home Politics of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Syarmadani. Only the National Mandate Party (Partai Amanat Nasional – “PAN”) representative failed to appear physically and attended online. 

In the meeting, the political party attendees expressed their commitment to organize internal political education that embeds anti-corruption principles. Included in the education program is the insertion of anti-corruption material in their 2021 cadre induction program, named the Anti-corruption Education Program for Politicians Program (Program Pendidikan Anti-korupsi for Politisi – “Proparpol”). The parties also planned to make a joint public declaration of anti-corruption education by their General Chairmen. “We hope that the General Chairmen of political parties will deliver a joint declaration of anti- corruption education for political parties, which, of course, is an education in politics that includes anti-corruption materials,” Giri said. 

Acting Spokeswoman of the KPK Ipi Maryati stated that political parties as the main pillar of the democratic system play a strategic role. Consequently, they must be managed transparently, democratically, and accountably, whether in terms of human resource governance, financial assets and resource management, along with management of the party itself as a modern organization. KPK’s research shows that the primary factors that cause integrity issues in parties are: a lack of ethical standards for both the party and individual politicians, traditional means of political recruitment and cadre induction (by “personal recommendations” instead of open testing), opaque and non-accountable funding, and sham implementation of democracy in the internal management of the parties. Therefore, an institutionalized integrity system for political parties is necessary to ensure that all political behavior, action, and choices of these parties really reflect a consolidated democratic system that will in turn truly build a proper, corruption- free governance. 

LIPI researcher Moch. Nurhasim welcomes the commitment KPK has entered into with the eight political parties, to include anti-corruption material in the internal political education of the parties. Including such material in internal political education is a process of mutual literacy. After all, democracy cannot be implemented without political parties. Therefore, political parties, LIPI, and KPK need to cooperate in reforming the parties internally. “How do we reform the internality of the parties as democratic institutions in the spirit or mandate of the Constitution? Doing so will allow these institutions to serve as a solid foundation for developing our people and our State better in the future,” he said.

 Attendee General Secretary of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (Partai Demokrasi Indonesia Perjuangan – “PDIP”), Hasto Kristiyanto, reported that all attending political parties described their individual political concepts. “All of the Party representatives are fully aware of the importance of anti-corruption education. “This discussion is extremely positive. We appreciate KPK for having approached us political parties for a common dialog. We also agree with all aspects of inserting anti- corruption education in political parties,” he said. 

Vice General Secretary of the Democrat Party Renanda Bachtar stated that his Party has established a special department to deal with KPK-related issues in 2015. The Party cooperates with KPK for providing anti-corruption education materials, and also in managing anti-corruption schools in several provinces. “Today, we discussed inserting anti-corruption education to the internal organization of the Party itself. In the future, we will also learn about how to improve cooperation in other forms, as we want to eradicate corruption in Indonesia starting from within the Party,” he said. 

Meanwhile, General Secretary of Functional Group (Golongan Karya – “Golkar”) Party Lodewijk F. Paulus hopes that KPK will unveil an anti-corruption curriculum soon. “As we have our own short- to medium- term political education program, naturally we expect to integrate the KPK syllabus or curriculum. What we need to know includes how many lessons it will take, with an assumption that each lesson takes about 45 minutes, and what are the theories and practices of good governance,” he said. (Dan)

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