The Year of 2018 is The Political Year

The  Year  of  2018  is The Political Year

The  Government that run by the Cabinet Coalition  is  politically  working for the preparation to   attract the heart  of the  people to face the General Election and the Presidential Election in the year of 2019. It means the people has to feel satisfy with the result of  the  Cabinet’s  working after ruling the country for five years.

Accordingly specifically  President Jokowi said, the year of 2018 is  the  political year, that likely means  all the Ministries  have to work hard  since now so  in 2018  the people will feel politically satisfy to  the presence of the President Jokowi’s  government. As the further political event,  the ruling Political Parties led by President Jokowi are expected to be re-elected as the further  ruling  Cabinet Coalition led by  President Jokowi  as the eight President  of  The Republic of Indonesia  for five more years (2019-2024)

Also Minister of Home Affairs Tjahyo Kumolo, who is the former Secretary General of PDI-P openly said that all   the Ministers  members of Government Coalition though  to be  coming from  different political parties  they  should work to finish the mission of their respective Ministry successfully  as the supporters of the government.

The expectation of President Jokowi and Minister of Home Affairs Tjahyo Kumolo is normal expectation however it is also the realistic  consideration that though President Jokowi  is very popular and  as if people will elect  him as the President  of  the  period  of  2019-2024,  but President Jokowi likely also  objectively recognizes the achievement of his Cabinet is still  far  bellow his campaign promises as stated in the Nawacita  as the Official Program of his Cabinet.

Most of observers were of the opinion President Jokowi in his  yearly  speech as he presented  in  front of the House of Representatives plenum meeting on August 16, 2017 was not completely describing   the  general report  on  the national development program in the   respective annual achievement  describing what have been achieved and what are still needed  the strong struggle to achieve all  of the national development target. President Jokowi definitely  had  presented the various achievement  but  without clearly  describing the position  of  the achievement in the short, medium and long range  national dvelopment program. So it is clear President did not describe the achievement and  what struggle we should face to completely finish  the national development.

Political analyst are of belief in connection with the political year of 2018 and finally in 2019 President Jokowi needs  not only his wide popularity but also mainly his high electability to win the Presidential Election of 2019. Now the popularity of President Jokowi is definitely wider  than his possible rivals in the Presidential Election of 2019.

However he still needs the strong electability to win the battle and the essential factor of his electability are the complete achievement of the Government  National Development Program as described in Nawacita.

Accordingly the reminding of President Jokowi to all his Ministers to work  professionally to achieve the goals needed by all the Citizens is very serious instruction for the Cabinet Coalition members. The  people’s satisfaction will become the main factor  to  built the strong electability of President Jokowi and all the Cabinet Coalition members Political Parties.

President Jokowi definitely realizes the complete achievement of the medium term (five years) of the national development program is the essential element to keep his popularity permanently wide and to build the electability for the General Election and mainly in the Presidential Election in 2019 become higher.

Minister of Home Affairs is also definitely aware of this situation accordingly he demands all the members of the Cabinet Coalition faithfully  perform his mission to finish successfully a part of the Government mission  allocated  to all the members of the Cabinet Coalition.

Skillfully Minister  of Home Affairs Tjahyo Kumolo touched Vice President JK to actively become the leader of President Jokowi success team in the coming Presidential Election. Definitely that kind of political activity is unlikely possible because Vice President JK is also potential to become the Presidential Candidate in the coming  Presidential Election.  However Minister Tjahyo Kumolo clarified it as his personal  idea  but  he  is definitely expecting Vice President JK to actively watch, control and supervise  all  the Cabinet members to  work  hard and seriously.

The year of 2018 and  2019  have  been likely too close for the Cabinet reshuffle. Accordingly it seems likely President Jokowi will not conduct  the Tird Cabinet Reshuffle   to finish this Presidential term except  any one of the Ministers  to resign for  joining the Regional Election.

Vulnerable Factors

Concerning  the effort to strengthen of his Electability, President Jokowi definitely  should evaluate  the weakness  or the vulnerable factors  existing  in his implementation of his Government National Program, namely Nawacita as he promised in his Presidential Election campaign in 2014.

According to  Muchtar Effendi Harahap, one Political Observer of the Network for South East Asia Studies (NSEAS) there are four factors affecting  the decrease of the electability of President Jokowi  to day  namely:

First,  the  failure of President Jokowi to fulfill his campaign promises to perform the People’s Welfare. In relation to the above reason, the failure of President Jokowi to manage his government in relation with the National Medium Development Planning (five years), apparently to have been affecting the more difficult situation of the economic life of the  people, this is definitely  very essential.

Second, the publish of the  Political  Government  Regulation to suppress and to dissolve  the Moslem mass organization and  to  criminalize the  Moslem activist  and Ulema.” (who are considered as radical and are against the Pancasila National Philosophy). The publish of the Government  Regulation No 2 of 2017 to replace Law No 17 of 2003 on Mass Organization, which is now evaluated by the  Constitution Court has been felt  by the Moslem in general as the effort to weaken the role and the political influence of the Moslem society. The Moslem  society is considered as the majority of the Citizens.

The third factor is the growing resistance and negative attitude especially among Moslem group, and the middle class  society in the City in  connection  with the existing  contradictory situation  to the campaign promises of President Jokowi.

The fourth  factor  is   apparently caused by the failure of   the  regional and local supporting  political  party’s   infrastructure  (members of the Cabinet Coalition) to attract  their   followers in their respective constituent to uphold  President  Jokowi’s image.   Those  four analysis  should not be considered as hoax but a feedback that are good for further re-evaluation and correction of working.

Aside  of  that  political  analysis  the various  rough  observation are also indicating the  sporadic  indication  of  the lack of economic program dealing with the effort  to absorb  the job seekers and  reducing the jobless  as  the  significant part to perform the people’s welfare.

The Good expectations to Jokowi

Qualitatively the evaluation is describing the Political and Economic Situation within almost the last three years  are not creating the good expectations :President Jokowi apparently did not established his Cabinet based on Professionalism but more based on the take and give principles among the Political Parties suporting his government. His effort to create the strong Parliamentary spport to have pushed him to establish his Cabinet based on more Political Party interest.

The credible support of the members of the Cabinet Coalition is doubted, affected by   the internal  problem of  the respective political  party such as the internal dispute in the Golkar Party caused by the problem of Setyo Novanto; PKB which  apparently does not support Chofifah in the Regional Election in East Jawa; PPP wich is still in the leadership conflict; PAN which supports the Cabinet but does  not support Pres Jokowi in 2019 Presidential Election, Nasdem and Hanura  Party  are likely  the  only supporting political party expected to really give support  to Presiden Jokowi, but not spectacularly.

The development of the strategic infrfa structure is important but  the increasing  number of the foreign debt is not the good image of  the present Government because it definitely become the increasing of the national burden.

Foreign trade  is still  negatively  imbalance  this is indicating export is low because  the domestic industry is not progressing  and the job vacant  are still low and the jobless are stll high.

The increasing number of stock of fish for export has not yet increased the income of the fishermen.

The expensive price of food in general is indicating the slow progress of agricutural product.

The life of the low level group of the society is harder with the payment capabilty are apparently  low. The objective number of poor peole has never been made.

In general the good image is only in the development of heavy infra structure mainly  road and transportation but lack of industrial infrastructure  building such as the  water dam and  the electric power.

Definitely without spectacular changing in the daily economic life the  image of President’s Jokowi government both politically and economically  are considered worse than the previous years under the previous Government. Not much changing likely could be achieved within one year.

Since the popularity does not mean directly to  build the electability, the political scenario of single Presidential Candidate in the Presidential Election in 2019 is not likely visible. Tjahyo Kumolo  (Minister of Home Affairs) personally predicts there will be likely  three Presidential Candidates in the Presidential Election in 2019.

*)  Lieutenant General TNI (Ret) Soedibyo, Political and Security Observer in Jakarta.

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