The wRap Indonesia: Dec. 15, 2014
JAKARTA, Indonesia – The latest in the tragic landslide at Banjarnegara, Central Java, and a new regulation that would allow big provinces to have more than one deputy governor lead our wrap of stories from Indonesia over the weekend.
1. Jokowi warns Indonesia prone to landslides as Banjarnegara death toll climbs
"I urge Indonesians to be vigilant as there are hundreds of locations around us which are prone to landslides," President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo said on Sunday, December 14, after visiting Jemblung village in Banjarnegara, Central Java, where 69 are still missing after a landslide late Friday. More than a thousand rescue workers and volunteers have so far found 39 bodies, and chances of finding any more survivors are very slim, according to rescuers. Almost 600 people have been evacuated to shelters and are in need of food, blankets, and medicines. Read the full story on Rappler.
2. New regulation could see Jakarta have up to 3 deputy governors
A new government regulation allows large provinces and cities to have several deputy mayors or governors. Jakarta, for example, and other provinces with populations exceeding 10 million can have up to 3 deputy governors, according to the government regulation signed by Jokowi on December 1. The regulation sets out the implementing rules for the special government regulation in lieu of law (Perppu) Yudhoyono issued in October on direct regional elections, which among others stated there could be more than one deputy for local governments. Critics say the regulation would lead to bureaucratic waste and open the door to more political power sharing, but Home Affairs Minister Tjahjo Kumolo was quoted on MetroTV as saying it’s just about serving the people better. However, Yudhoyono’s Perppu can still be struck down by the legislature next month.
3. Indonesia could announce new subsidized fuel price policy before new year
With crude oil markets falling to 5-year lows on Friday, December 12, Coordinating Minister for the Economy Sofyan Djalil said the government would announce new fuel price policies within the next 3 weeks or before the year ends. Indonesia hiked subsidized fuel prices in November but its gap with unsubsidized fuel is narrowing. The government could roll back subsidized fuel prices, or announce the expected shift to a fixed fuel subsidy scheme. This means the price of subsidized fuel would fluctuate based on global market prices, with the government subsidy fixed at a certain price per liter. Consumers would therefore bear the impact of global oil price fluctuations, not the government. The government has previously said the fuel price hike was just the first step in a reform of the subsidy scheme.
4. A week on, still no clarity on Papua shootings
Indonesia's National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) on Friday called on the military to "stop spreading false news" about what happened during the December 8 shooting of teenagers in Papua. Activists accuse the military of firing shots at the teenagers who were dancing and protesting a beating incident the previous night, but various other versions have emerged, with some officials even suggesting the separatist Free Papua Movement (OPM) could have been involved. Jokowi has not yet issued a statement on the incident, and local church leaders have rejected the president's planned visit to the province for a national Christmas celebration on December 27 as a result. Few such cases are resolved in the restive province
5. Websites crash, Internet traffic spikes on Indonesia's national online shopping day
Indonesia's 3rd annual national online shopping day on Friday, December 12 – inspired by the United States' Cyber Monday – led to a surge in Internet traffic and some major shopping websites briefly crashing. The Internetindo Data Center (IDC) told KompasTekno that daily Internet traffic usually peaks at 150-160 Gigabytes, but on Friday they saw it exceed 170Gb. It didn't beat the 180Gb record set during the presidential election campaign but it was enough to cause some websites to crash. Lazada Indonesia told Tempo.co transactions increased almost 10 times on Friday, and for a few moments their server wasn't able to process payments. Up to 78 online stores participated in this year's sale with discounts of up to 90%, up from only 6 merchants when it started in 2012. – Rappler.com