DPR and BPIP: “Pancasila from early education to university”

The Commission II of DPR RI Hearing with the Acting Chairman of BPIP and his staff held in the Parliamentary Building, Senayan, Jakarta, on Monday (25/11/2019). (photo: Prive. Doc)

IO, Jakarta – The less Pancasila is expressed in the people’s daily behavior, the further away it is felt as a part of national identity. President Joko Widodo feels disturbed by this and seeks to revive Pancasila in the citizens’ daily life. Therefore, he established the Pancasila Ideological Guidance Agency (Badan Pembinaan Ideologi Pancasila – “BPIP”) through Presidential Regulation Number 7 of 2018. Its purpose is to return Pancasila into becoming a living ideology in the daily lives of the people. 

BPIP’s Acting Chairman Haryono stated that BPIP has projected some actions into the future. One of these is to set Pancasila as a mandatory course at all levels of formal education, from Early Childhood Education (Pendidikan Anak Usia Dini – “PAUD”) to college. However, the education should not be provided using indoctrinating models, but using more contextual and persuasive methods. “We want to amend the National Educational System Law Number 20 of 2003, so that Pancasila would not be slipped in as part of the Pancasila and civics lessons, but a separate and independent course. We hope that the House of Representatives of the Republic of Indonesia (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat Republik Indonesia – “DPR RI”), as the institution that creates national-level regulation, would help our effort to make Pancasila a truly living ideology – one that moves and determines the position of Indonesia in the future,” Haryono stated during the Commission II of DPR RI Hearing with the Acting Chairman of BPIP and his staff held in the Parliamentary Building, Senayan, Jakarta, on Monday (25/11/2019). 

Chairman of DPR RI’s Commission II Ahmad Doli Kurnia Tandjung stated that the rise and fall of the United Republican Nation of Indonesia (Negara Kesatuan Republik Indonesia – “NKRI”) depends on a single ideology, Pancasila. BPIP as a special agency formed by the Government has a crucial and strategic role of making the people understand the importance of living the noble values in the Pancasila ideology. “Commission II has the same sort of spirit in relation to Pancasila. Therefore, let us not stop at making Pancasila a mere symbol. We need to be able to comprehend it, feel its meaning, and implement it in our daily lives,” he said. 

Ahmad Doli believes that Commission II’s hearing with BPIP is important and strategic, because as we all know, at the start of the Reform Era, the ideological values of Pancasila were diverted from daily lives in the citizenry and Government. BPIP’s existence is important for helping the people understand the noble values in the Pancasila ideology. “The already existing cries of ‘Saya Pancasila’ (‘I am (the embodiment of) Pancasila’) and ‘Saya Indonesia’ (‘I am (the embodiment of) Indonesia’) serve as the starting point for reintroducing Pancasila to the people and to rally them to really live it,” he said. 

Meanwhile, DPR member from the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (Partai Demokrasi Indonesia Perjuangan – “PDIP”) Faction Junimart Girsang stated that Commission II supports BPIP in improving its performance and function when implementing the mental revolution and Pancasila ideological guidance programs. In the end, these programs will serve as the ethical and philosophical base for realizing national development based on Pancasila’s ideological value. They will also improve the performance of the Directing Council and Executing Council in this case. “We encourage BPIP to strengthen moral education involving Pancasila and nationalist values through formal and non-formal educational channels, from PAUD to college. We also encourage BPIP to improve the socializing, communication, and publication of Pancasila’s ideological value to both State administrators and the common people. We hope that BPIP can cooperate with the People’s Consultative Assembly (Majelis Permusyawaratan Rakyat – “MPR”) when executing these programs,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Chairman of DPR RI’s Commission X Dede Yusuf Ma˝ˇcan Effendi also supports BPIP’s intent to stipulate that Pancasila becomes a mandatory lesson at all levels of education. “As long as the lessons are meant for character building and not enforced, it’s fine. However, I would suggest that the course be called ‘Cinta Negeri’ (‘Love of the Nation’) instead of ‘Pancasila Education’ for PAUD,” he said at the Parliamentary Building on Tuesday (26/11/2019). He believes that Elementary School students should learn to know Pancasila and NKRI, then learn about Defending the Country, Unity in Diversity, etc. from Middle School upwards. This method is actually widely practiced in Pramuka (the Indonesian equivalent of America’s Boy Scouts), at all levels in Pramuka. “BPIP must learn from Pramuka in order to prevent enforcement in education,” he said. (Dan)