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Jakartans hope for leaders who respond to, solve their problems

Jakarta Post - March 7, 2019

Sausan Atika, Jakarta – Jakartans have claimed they had not noticed the massive shake-up Governor Anies Baswedan recently conducted in his administration, but hoped it would lead to improvements made on public services that have been on the decline in recent years.

Snack merchant Immawati, 48, a resident of North Grogol subdistrict in South Jakarta, said she had learned about her area's newly appointed subdistrict head by word of mouth. She hopes the change will help empower the people.

"Wong cilik [common folk] like me hope that everything will be easier. I wish I will be given assistance and funds to expand my kiosk," she told The Jakarta Post on Wednesday.

Another resident, Nurhayati, 34, echoed her sentiments, expressing hope that the administration's One District One Center of Entrepreneurship (OK OCE entrepreneurship program), which seems to be in limbo after former deputy governor Sandiaga Uno resigned from his post to run in the April presidential election, will continue.

Nurhayati said she had taken part in a series of training courses held by the OK OCE, but she still failed to get a loan because the location of her kiosk was not considered strategic enough. She hopes to participate in other empowerment programs in the subdistrict. "I believe subdistrict officials could have a similar initiative," she said.

The reshuffle, which affected 1,125 city officials, including 15 echelon II officials, 274 from echelon III and 836 from echelon IV, is expected to improve the city's public services.

The reshuffle also included the appointment of 90 new subdistrict heads, a tour of duty of existing 45, which affected about a half of 267 subdistricts in the capital. Only 132 subdistrict heads remained at their respective posts.

To boost their leadership abilities, the administration is set to hold training of its "visioning" program, comprising seven sessions. The first session took place at City Hall on Tuesday and was attended by six regents and mayors, 44 district heads and 267 subdistrict heads.

"We want subdistrict heads and district heads to cooperate with regents and mayors and also other administrative areas," he said.

Jakarta Human Resources Development Agency head Budihastuti said the training program was necessary because nine out of 60 regional strategic programs are situated in the subdistrict and district levels, such as waste reduction from the source and enhancement of public complaints through the open house and citizen relation management (CRM) app.

Novi Indria Sari, a subdistrict head reassigned from South Duri in Tambora district to Wijaya Kusuma in Grogol Petamburan district, both in West Jakarta, said her new position would be more challenging because the area is home to some 35,000 people or three times the number of residents in South Duri.

"For the new subdistrict heads, [the major reshuffle] can be a source of motivation, but for the old ones, it means that we must do better," she told the Post.

A similar sentiment came from South Manggarai subdistrict head Agung Maolana, who has served the South Jakarta area for more than three years.

"I personally feel no difference in the recent [reshuffle]. We don't own our position. It's about trust. We should be ready to serve anytime, anywhere," he said.

Trubus Rahadiansyah, a public policy expert at Trisakti University, doubted there would be significant improvements made in the capital within a short time because most of its problems were due to unattended public complaints, not poor cooperation skills.

"The decline in public services is due to unresolved public complaints and illegal levies reported at the lower administration level," he said.

Ombudsman Jakarta head Teguh Nugroho said the reshuffle was urgently required for officials working in the front lines of bureaucracy who have been at their post for more than five years. "The longer they are entrenched in the same position, the more they become vulnerable to illegal levies," he said.

According to Ombudsman Jakarta, 67 percent of reported public complaints in 2018 came from Jakartans, while the remaining were from Depok, Bekasi and Bogor in West Java.

Source: https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2019/03/07/jakartans-hope-for-leaders-who-respond-to-solve-their-problems.html