IO – The Ministry of Defense under Prabowo Subianto is starting socialization of the Reserve Component (Komponen Cadangan – “Komcad”) program, intended to strengthen the National Army in its effort to protect the security of the nation. The Program is open to Indonesian citizens 18-35 years old who would like to volunteer as reserve soldiers, as regulated in Law Number 23 of 2019 concerning National Resource Management (Pengelolaan Sumber Daya Nasional – “PSDN”) and in Government Regulation Number 3 of 2021 as executing regulations.
The Ministry has been socializing the Komcad scheme in regional centers such as Pontianak, Palembang, Balikpapan and Jayapura. Next targeted for the socializing route are Medan, Manado, Makassar, Bandung, Jakarta, Semarang, Surabaya, Bali and Ambon. The Ministry of Defense invites regional governments, the local police, and local prominent figures to participate in the socialization.
Ministry of Defense’s Director General of Defense Potential Maj. Gen. Dadang Hendrayudha stated that citizens are allowed to register as members of the Reserve Component at the local District Military Command Unit (Komando Rayon Militer – “Koramil”) headquarters. To pass the selection, Reserve Component Candidate Members must be physically and mentally healthy, must have no criminal record (as certified by the National Police). Like their primary military counterpart, the Reserve Component is grouped into the land, sea, and air forces.
When they pass selection, Komcad recruits must participate in a threemonth-long military basic training regimen. Reserve Component recruits are allotted a financial allowance, individual field equipment, healthcare, and accident and death insurance during their basic training. “After basic training, they can return to their professions,” Dadang said in an interview on Monday (15/03/2021).
Dadang went on to confirm that Reserve Component Candidate Members who are originally civil servants, employees, laborers, and students will not lose their status or rights while engaged. “We have coordinated the program with the Ministry of Education and Culture. They already have the Free Campus program, by which a college student can use an entire semester to study in other study programs, or to participate in the Reserve Component,” he said. “It is high time Indonesia has reserve troops similar to our regional neighbors, such as Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, and the Philippines. After all, Indonesia has nearly 300 million citizens and 438 million active soldiers, but no reserve soldiers like these neighboring countries do.”
Minister of Defense Prabowo Subianto reminded all several times that the establishment of a Reserve Component is actually part of the national design of our founding fathers. The concept of “universal defense” is described in the Constitution of 1945 Article 27 Paragraph (3), which mandates that “All citizens have the right and obligation to participate in the effort to defend the country,” and Article 30 Paragraph (1), which reiterates that “All citizens have the right and obligation to participate in the effort to safeguard and secure the country.”
Separately, Ministry of Defense Spokesman Dahnil Anzar Simanjuntak stated that the Ministry will establish at least 35 battalions of reserve troops this year. Of these 35 battalions, 25,000 members of the Reserve Component will help out at the Armed Forces National Headquarters, with the assumption that each battalion contains 400 to 500 Reserve Component members. “Komcad target is 35 battalions for this year. Therefore, we hope to accelerate recruitment to a maximum of 25,000 new Komcad members this year,” he said in an interview on Friday (12/3/2021).
The Ministry is recalculating the need for reserve soldiers for each branch of the Army in future years. After all, the addition of Reserve Component depends on the individual needs of each force, whether it is the Army, the Navy, or Air Force. “Even though we will have a Reserve Component later, the National Army remains the primary defense force for Indonesia. The Reserve Component is to be filled by volunteers,” he said. (Ekawati)