Jumat, 14 Juni 2019

SAIL INDONESIA 2019 TO UNVEIL BEST SECRET OF INDONESIA: NIAS ISLAND

Kategori : National News (NAT)
Jumat, 14 Jun 2019 21:05
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah
Jakarta, 14/6 (Antara) -
Nias Island, located in North Sumatra Province and often considered the best kept secret of Indonesians, will be unveiled to the world at an international maritime event to be organized from July until September 2019.

Sail Nias, the 11th series of Sail Indonesia, will be opened at a ceremony in Teluk Dalam (Bay), South Nias, on September 14, 2019. Sail Indonesia is part of plans to accelerate the development of underdeveloped regions in Indonesia.

Various activities will be organized during the event, including Wonderful Nias Expo 2019, an international surfing contest, a battleship parade, Nias Marathon, a culinary bazaar, and traditional art and cultural performances.

Other activities will include Wind Surfing and Sailing Contests, Free Diving Competition, Stone Jump Festival, Traditional Fishing Boat Parade, Coffee Festival, Fishing Tournament, Wonderful Tourism Photo Expo, One Thousand Tents Festival, and the Mt Sitori cultural seminar.

At least 100 thousand Indonesian and foreign tourists are expected to come for Sail Nias, whose main activities will be held from September 10 to 14, according to Hidayati, head of the North Sumatra tourism office.
Sail Nias will offer an opportunity to promote Nias globally and boost the local economy, Zaman K. Mendrofa, a prominent figure, remarked recently.

Jumat, 31 Mei 2019

ISRAELI ILLEGAL SETTLEMENTS POSE HINDRANCE TO PEACE IN PALESTINE

Jumat, 31 Mei 2019 19:20
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah Assegaf
Jakarta, 31/5 (Antara) - Palestine's struggle for independence has been at the very core of Indonesia's foreign policy, so the Palestinian cause is omnipresent in all aspects of Indonesian diplomacy.
Indonesia is a non-permanent member of the United Security Council (UNSC) for the 2019-2020 period and currently holds the UNSC chairmanship for the month of May 2019.

Indonesia, the worlds largest Muslim-majority nation, has outlined four priority issues and one special-attention issue during its UNSC membership starting January 1, 2019, and ending on December 31, 2020. The special issue is Palestines fight for freedom from illegal occupation by Israel.

On May 9, 2019, Retno Marsudi presided over a meeting, jointly held by Indonesia, Kuwait, and South Africa, that was attended by Palestines Foreign Affairs Minister Riyad Al-Maliki at the UN Headquarters in New York.

"The continued development of Israeli illegal settlements in Palestinian territories is unacceptable," she emphasized during the informal meeting of the Arria Formula themed "Israeli settlements and settlers: Core of the occupation, protection crisis and obstruction of peace."

The number of illegal Israeli settlements has grown steadily, from 110 thousand in 1993, to 620 thousand in 2017. This rising figure is a major impediment in the path to reaching a peace agreement between Israel and Palestine.

Rabu, 29 Mei 2019

INVESTIGATION TEAMS EXPECTED TO REVEAL TRUTH OF POST-ELECTION UNREST

Rabu, 29 Mei 2019 22:38
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah
Jakarta, 29/5 (Antara) -
Jakarta's post-election rally, which ended in violence from May 21 to 22, 2019, claimed eight lives and resulted in hundreds of protestors, and nine police officers, being injured. The police claimed, however, that seven people were dead, while others said the fatalities reached more than 10.

Of those injured, 294 victims were between 20 and 24 years old, and 170 others were below 19 years, while the deaths included three teens, according to the Governor of Jakarta, Anies Baswedan.

The General Elections Commission (KPU) announced the final results of the recent parliamentary and presidential elections on May 22 at 1:28 a.m., declaring that the Jokowi-Maruf Amin pair had secured 85 million votes, or 55.5 percent of the national vote, as compared to contenders Prabowo Subianto-Sandiaga Uno receiving 68 million votes, or 44.5 percent.

The Jokowi-Amin pair has since declared victory, while the Prabowo-Sandi pair rejected the KPU's official tabulation result and issued a legal challenge at the Constitutional Court (MK).

This unfinished political process sparked a mass protest from the Prabowo supporters, who alleged massive fraud in the presidential elections.

The police allowed them to stage a rally until they finished performing Tarawih, the evening prayers during the holy month of Ramadan, on the evening of May 21. As revealed by National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Dedi Prasetyo, the peaceful demonstrators left the front of the Bawaslu (Election Supervisory Agency) building around 9 p.m.

Senin, 27 Mei 2019

INDONESIA ON TOP LIST OF WORLD'S HALAL TOURISM INDUSTRY

Senin, 27 Mei 2019 23:27
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah
Jakarta, 27/5 (Antara) - Indonesia, which has been aggressively developing its halal tourism industry over the last five years, has been named the world's best halal tourist destination, based upon the Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI) 2019, outclassing 130 destinations throughout the world.
Mastercard-Crescent rating agency put Indonesia at first place, based upon GMTI standards with a score of 78, along with Malaysia in the upper rankings, Crescent Rating CEO Fazal Bahardeen said, while delivering a GMTI Report 2019 in Jakarta in April.

"After joining GMTI this year, Indonesia should be proud, because it was finally able to rank first in the world's halal tourism, along with Malaysia, with a total score of 78," Fazal Bahardeen stated.

In addition to Indonesia, other countries included in the the 10 best halal tourist destinations are Malaysia, also with a score of 78, Turkey (75), Saudi Arabia (72), United Arab Emirates (71), Qatar (68), Morocco (67), Bahrain (66), Oman (66), and Brunei Darussalam (65).

In defining the ranking, it evaluated four factors -- access, communications, the environment and service.

Indonesias priority halal tourist destinations in 2018 included Aceh, Riau, Riau Islands, West Sumatra, Jakarta, West Java, Central Java, Yogyakarta, East Java, West Nusa Tenggara and South Sulawesi Provinces.

HOPING FOR SAFE AND SMOOTH EID AL-FITR EXODUS

Senin, 27 Mei 2019 21:56
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah
Jakarta, 27/5 (Antara) - Indonesian Muslims, who account for over 85 percent of the country's 260 million population, began observing the holy fasting month of Ramadan on May 6, 2019. At the end of the fasting month, on June 5 or 6, they will celebrate the Eid al-Fitr Islamic festivities.
Most Indonesian Muslims follow the tradition of celebrating Eid al-Fitr in their hometowns with their relatives. As a result, there is an exodus of travelers, particularly from cities to villages, during this time of year.

The government has predicted that more than 22.83 million Eid al-Fitr holidaymakers will travel by public transportation this year, up four percent compared to last year.

"Based on the results of our survey, 4.4 million (holidaymakers) choose to travel by bus," Director General of Land Transportation of the Transportation Ministry Budi Karya Sumadi said at a coordination meeting on Eid-al-Fitr transportation 2019 in Bandarlampung, Lampung Province, Sumatra Island, recently.

Of the total travelers, 2.4 million will choose to travel by train, 1.4 million by plane, 4.3 million by private cars and 940 thousand by motorcycle.

"Until now, motorcyclists still dominated Java's northern coastal highway during the homecoming period," the minister said.

Over the last few years, the government has encouraged homebound travelers to travel by motorcycles on their long journeys home. For this purpose, it has provided free rides to motorcyclists heading home for the holidays. Private companies have also been urged to offer free buses to transport their low-income employees, so they can return to their hometowns.

Budi Sumadi said this year's homecoming traveling, locally known as mudik, is themed "Safe and Harmonious Homecoming Traveling" in accordance with President Joko Widodo's directives. As such, the public will feel more secure during their trips. He hoped the Eid al-Fitr exodus will run smoothly and remain safe.

Jumat, 10 Mei 2019

GOVERNMENT TO STOP PRIVATIZATION OF WATER SUPPLY

Jumat, 10 Mei 2019 21:04
Daerah : Jakarta
By Fardah
Jakarta, 10/5 (Antara) - After entrusting private companies with supplying clean water to Jakarta residents for two decades, the Jakarta administration has decided to give the task to its own clean water supply company, PT PAM Jaya.

The plan to restore water management concessions in Jakarta continues to run smoothly. PT. Aetra Air Jakarta signed a head of agreement (HoA) with PAM Jaya on April 12, 2019, in Jakarta, PT PAM Jaya recently said in a statement.

Managing Director of PT. PAM Jaya Priyatno Bambang Hernowo, who signed the HoA, outlined four points of the initial agreement.

The points include PAM Jaya and Aetra agreeing to return water management concessions in Jakarta to PAM Jaya, and arranging a transition in the management of the Drinking Water Supply System in the capital city after ending the privatization of water.

Since 1998, the management of drinking water in Jakarta was managed by two private companies, namely Aetra for the eastern region of Jakarta, and PT PAM Lyonnaise Jaya (Palyja) for the western region of Jakarta, while PAM Jaya acted as a supervisor.

A study conducted by an evaluation team set up by Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan concluded that it is unlikely for private partners to reach targets set at the beginning of the agreement under the current cooperation scheme.

Hence, the governor has asked PAM Jaya to take over piped water management. This is part of a larger global trend toward remunicipalization, under which local authorities can retake control of previously privatized water and sanitation services.

The remunicipalization plan is part of the city's efforts to achieve at least 82 percent tap water coverage by 2023, which is also in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), targeting 100 percent coverage by 2030.

During the 1998-2018 period, the coverage of clean water supply service only increased by 14.9 percent. In 1998, the coverage was 44.5 percent, and in 2017, it went up to 59.4 percent, far from the coverage target of 82 percent by 2023.

The two-decade privatization of Jakartas clean water supply has failed to meet the target of 100 percent coverage of tap water supply.

Governor Anies Baswedan was pleased that the private operators responded positively. Water services should be perceived as a basic need, not as a mere business, he remarked.

Tommy Albert Tobing, a member of the Coalition of Jakarta Residents Opposing Water Privatization (KMMSAJ), said direct remunicipalization would ensure the profits from the lucrative tap water business would be used for the good of the citys residents, rather than for the benefit of a handful of people.

The profits from PAM Jaya will be for the residents, Tobing said.

He said the plan would also return Rp 1.77 trillion in assets to the city administration that was currently in the hands of PAM Jayas private partners.

Fahira Idris, Jakartas senator, also lauded the governor's decision to take over clean water supply management and service. The move was in accordance with Baswedans pledge during the Jakarta gubernatorial race campaign called "The City Advances, The Inhabitants are Happy", she said.

The decision is good news for the residents of Jakarta after two decades of having depended on private companies to get clean water, the senator remarked.

"It is the right decision because it has been taken following a comprehensive study and the takeover was done through a civil process with talks held with Palyja and Aetra," she noted.

It is a bold decision, as the governor does not have to wait for the termination of the contract in 2023, according to the member of the Jakarta Representative Council, or DPD.

"The decision to stop the privatization of water supply has demonstrated that Governor Anies has chosen to stand with the people," she emphasized.

Idris believes that until the time clean water is an expensive and exclusive commodity, a city will never advance, as clean water is a basic necessity for human beings. When clean water becomes expensive and exclusive, the productivity and economy of its residents will be affected, as they have to allocate a large sum of money to avail of clean water, she pointed out.

"Hence, over a decade ago, major cities in the world had kicked out the privatization of water, and they preferred to independently manage the supply of clean water for their residents," she remarked.

In line with the Constitution, the state must meet the public need for clean water, she said, adding that no significant progress has been achieved since private companies took over the management of clean water supply.

"The Jakarta provincial administration has taken a strong stance to take over the management and service of clean water supply for its residents to ensure that every person has access to clean water supply," she stated.