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CSIS Jakarta: Politics present in disaster management

Tempo - February 27, 2020

Dio Suhenda, Jakarta – Executive Director of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Jakarta, Phillip J. Vermonte pointed out the presence of political influences in Indonesian disaster management.

In a discussion titled 'understanding the likelihood of prevalent risks, political dynamics of hazard and disaster policymaking in South-East Asia' held as part of the ASEAN High-Level Symposium on Disaster Management, Phillip lectured on the problems of disaster management in the ASEAN region.

"Over the years, ASEAN members are more keen to cooperate and they produce so many documents and cooperation. The problem is that disaster management falls under various institutions under ASEAN. We need to mainstream and synchronize all these initiatives," said Phillip, in the ASEAN Secretariat Building, South Jakarta, on Wednesday, February 26, 2020.

Phillip stated that political issues surround disaster management. In aspects of the approach, debates have occurred between a civilian or military-led response. Furthermore, the acceptance of international aid has at times, also become an issue in disaster management.

As such, the CSIS saw a positive trend in the way that disaster management is constructed as political events in Indonesia. Phillip pointed out that disaster management is not only capitalized as a means to garner support from voters, but political-figures are also now integrating this knowledge into their policies in order to seem most prepared to manage disasters.

"For example, during the (regional) election time, the disasters that occurred in Palu in 2018, politicians and various political groups competed in delivering assistance to the affected region. Then, during the normal period now, we see more and more political parties try to be seen as the most prepared," Phillip claimed.

The Executive Director for CSIS continued that disasters are inevitable and the management of disasters has been increasingly volatile due to climate change. With ASEAN's geographical location, the built-up CO2 gasses will only serve to further complicate disaster management.

In response, Dean for the Asian Development Bank Institute, Naoyuki Yoshino, introduced the idea for taxation on CO2 gasses, wherein the tax revenues can be used to fund disaster management financial reserves.

"I think it is very important to charge tax to CO2, globally, same tax rate, because many of the disasters have been created by climate change," Naoyuki stated, in the ASEAN Secretariat Building, on Wednesday, February 26.

The ASEAN High-Level Symposium on Disaster Management is being held starting from Tuesday, February 26 to Wednesday, February 27, 2020, in the ASEAN Secretariat Building, South Jakarta.

The symposium revolves around calls for collaborative efforts to reinforce ASEAN State Members' cooperation and advance the regional mechanisms in place to ensure effectiveness in tackling disaster management efforts.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1312694/csis-jakarta-politics-present-in-disaster-management