Maryati

Maryati

18
January

After decades, for the first time, an Australian Prime Minister set foot on Fiji and Vanuatu. This week, Prime Minister Scott Morrison visited the two countries. For Australia this is like keeping the promise made two months ago. At that time Australia was committed to pouring funds of up to 2 billion US dollars in grants and soft loans to Pacific countries. What made Australia suddenly open its maneuver to the east, which had been neglected? Apparently the People's Republic of China has approached the Pacific region in eastern Australia since 8 years ago. The money poured out by Beijing for cooperation with countries in the Pacific has reached 1.3 billion US dollars. That amount places China as the number 2 donor country after Australia. Another thing is President Xi Jin Ping's 4-day visit in Papua New Guinea in the series of his attendance at the APEC Summit in Port Moresby. Australia is actually in a dilemma. If it disturbs Beijing in the Pacific region, Australia will also accept the consequences because Beijing is a key trading partner. Yet, Australia and its main ally, the United States are worried that China will not only build trade relations but also place military bases in the region. Australia must also be clever to play a role so that its relationship remains good with both the US and China which currently are involved in a trade war. China entered the Pacific to reduce Taiwan's influence in the region. Taiwan, a country that is not recognized by Beijing, has helped many Pacific countries. Of course with the aim that they support Taipei. The presence of Beijing has prompted several Pacific countries to cease their  support for Taiwan. If Australia is in a state of anxiety, this is not the case with Pacific countries. They were suddenly like having a windfall because of the kindness  race between Australia and Beijing. The problem is, a  good deed usually  deserves another.

16
January

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The decision of the majority of the British people to get their country out of the European Union, the EU, entered a new phase. A problem arose when most British parliamentarians did not heed the call of British Prime Minister Theresa May to support her agreement with the European Community. In a vote late on Tuesday in London, the majority of the British Parliament rejected the proposed agreement made by the government with the European Union. The refusal was carried out not only by opposition MPs, but also by government parties. Earlier Prime Minister Theresa May stated that the rejection of the agreements she made with the European Community would disappoint the British people. One point of the agreement between the British government and the European Union is that Britain will pay a “divorce bill” to  the European Union around £27bn. In addition, the two parties agreed on the existence of a transition period that provides opportunities for both parties to avoid disruption to the business sector and trade. Indeed there will be no significant change with the agreement which scheduled to  start on  March 29, 2019 until December 31, 2020. Prime Minister Theresa May and her supporters are certainly thinking hard about the rejection by a majority of members of the British parliament. In addition to anticipating problems in the country, Theresa May also thought hard to convince the European Union of the implementation of the  agreement. It is possible that the British Prime Minister will approach and attempt to make some adjustments. This is still possible because the agreement between the British Government and the European Union is political in nature. Domestically,  criticism was raised over Brexit because members of Parliament considered Theresa May fail to fulfill hopes that Britain would regain full control of the bag of economic and trade policies held by the European Union. Another issue that is considered very crucial after Brexit is the regulation of borders in the Northern Ireland region. While it  was still  in the European Union, the border between the United Kingdom and northern Ireland is not physical. However, after exiting the European Union the border will become evident in the form of a control mechanism specifically to check the flow of goods. Prime Minister Theresa May must now make every effort to implement the results  of the referendum  two years ago. This is a test for her government because the impact of not agreeing to an agreement with the European Union is a threat of a vote of no confidence from Parliament.

14
January

On Wednesday, January the 9th 2019, the homes of Two Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) Leaders, Agus Rahardjo and Laode M. Syarif were terrorized by bombs. A vynil pipe-like bomb was hung on the fence of Agus Rahardjo’s home which is located at Graha Indah, Jatiasih, Bekasi City. Meanwhile, two molotov bombs were thrown at the house of Deputy Chairman of KPK, Laode which is located in Kalibata, South Jakarta. After receiving the information striking the houses of the two Corruption Eradication Commission Leaders, President Joko Widodo immediately instructed Indonesian National Police Chief, Tito Karnavian to investigate the terror case. According to President Joko Widodo, the terror was clearly an intimidation for Law Enforcement Agencies, therefore the terror could not be tolerated. President Jokowi believes that the effort of eradicating corruption would not be impeded due to the terror attack. It was not the first time that members of KPK were threatened by terror. Previously, KPK’s investigator, Novel Baswedan was attacked by unknown men who threw acid on his face and the case still has not yet been solved. Recently, as many as 65 officers were appointed by Indonesian National Police Chief, Tito Karnavian to investigate the terror case of Novel Baswedan thoroughly. Based on the Letter of Appointment signed by Chief of the Indonesian National Police, Tito Karnavian on Tuesday, January the 8th 2019, the Join-Fact Finding Team (TGPF) consists of Policemen, KPK, and experts on the related fields. However, the effectivity of the team in resolving the terror case remains a question. Serious commitment from the authorized parties in solving crimes is required especially the ones which engage in corruption eradication, considering corruption is an extraordinary crime in Indonesia. We do hope the Indonesian Police and other law enforcement agencies will take intensive actions to solve the terror case so that KPK investigators can perform their duty in eradicating corruption effectively without any disturbances.

07
January

2019 is a political year for the Indonesian nation, because on April 17, 2019, the Indonesian nation will carry out the General Election to elect the President and Vice President, members of the House of Representatives (DPR) and members of the Regional Representative Council (DPD) for the period 2019-2024. As we known, there are now 2 Candidates for President and Vice President in the Presidential Election, namely pair number 01, Joko Widodo and Ma'ruf Amin and pair number 02, Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno. This candidate pair is undergoing a campaign period that runs from September 23, 2018 to April 13, 2019. The most interesting thing from the campaign period for the election of the President and Vice President is the Debate of Presidential Candidates and Vice Presidents. There are 5 series of debates that will be held by the General Election Commission -KPU as the organizer of the General Elections in Indonesia, namely two presidential and vice presidential debates, two presidential debates, and one vice presidential debate. In addition, the KPU has also set themes, panelists and television media schedules which hold the first to fifth debates. The debate between presidential and vice presidential candidates is actually not new in Indonesia’s politics. In the 2014 election and the 2018 simultaneous regional elections, the KPU also held a debate on candidate pairs. From the debate, voters could get to know the candidate pairs of president and vice president and know the extent of their vision and mission if elected later. In contrast to the previous implementation, in the presidential and vice presidential debate this time, the two candidate pairs will first receive a list of questions that will be submitted by the panel a few days before the debating day. Both pairs of candidates can be better prepared to provide clear and substantive answers. It is hoped that this will make it easier for the public to make choices according to their aspirations. The debate is expected to take place naturally and healthily. So far, the presidential and vice presidential debate has often been carried out by the participants with a feeling of reluctance (Ewuh Pakewuh). Although this is closely related to Indonesian national culture, the essence of the debate itself sometimes becomes invisible.