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KPU and Bawaslu report ballot hoax to police

Friday, 04 Jan 2019
KPU and Bawaslu report ballot hoax to police
Ready: General Elections Commission (KPU) chairman Arief Budiman shows a ballot box that will be used in the 2019 presidential and legislative elections in a press conference in Jakarta on Nov. 15. (JP/Wendra Ajistyatama)


GENERAL NEWS AND HEADLINES
 
KPU and Bawaslu report ballot hoax to police
Koran Tempo
 
The General Elections Commission (KPU) and the Elections Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) have reported a number of individuals to the police for allegedly spreading fake news about seven containers of cast ballots for presidential candidate pair Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and Ma’ruf Amin. KPU chairman Arief Budiman, several KPU commissioners and Bawaslu member Fritz Edward Siregar went to the police’s Criminal Investigation Department (Bareskrim) to file the report and present evidence of the case. The police said they would summon all individuals in question, including Democratic Party politician Andi Arief. The police vowed to arrest the alleged perpetrators before voting day on April 17, 2019.
 
The news has stirred controversy since Jan. 2, after Andi, on his Twitter account, urged officials to check the containers believed to contain cast ballots in Tanjung Priok Port. His tweet was removed on the same day.
 
 
SBY to coach Prabowo
Kompas, p. 2
 
Presidential candidates are gearing up for the first official presidential debate on Jan. 17. The first debate, which is expected to last 90 minutes, will address the issues of human rights, corruption and terrorism. It has been reported that Democratic Party chairman and former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) will coach Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno. SBY’s guidance will not only encompass debate substance, but also political communication styles and body language.
 
 
Disasters blamed for dip in tourism
The Jakarta Post, Headline
 
A string of natural disasters that hit the country throughout 2018 were responsible for a recent drop in tourist arrivals and the government’s failure to meet its target of welcoming 17 million foreign visitors last year, according to officials. As of November, 14.39 million foreign tourists visited Indonesia in 2018. With the December data still in the pipeline, it is unlikely that the whole year figure will hit 17 million. According to Statistics Indonesia (BPS), the 14.39 million foreign tourist arrivals in January-November of 2018 constituted a 11.63 year-on-year increase. However, the agency also recorded a monthly decline in foreign tourist arrivals in the last five months.
 
 
BNPB’s coordination to change: Moeldoko
Republika, p. 1
 
Presidential chief of staff Moeldoko said the inauguration of the new National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) head had been postponed pending a revision of the presidential regulation (Perpres) on the agency. According to Moeldoko, the revision stipulates that the BNPB will no longer answer to the President. Instead, the Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Minister will supervise the BNPB. Moeldoko further said the BNPB would work with the Office of the Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Minister in emergency situations and with the Office of the Coordinating Human Development and Culture Minister in post-disaster rehabilitation.
 
 
Christians warn tolerance in danger
The Jakarta Post, p. 1
 
Religious tolerance in diverse Indonesia has been put to the test once again with at least 19 cross-shaped grave markers wrecked in three cemeteries in Magelang, Central Java, along with the graves of three Muslims. Magelang Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Kristanto Yoga Darmawan, who suspected that the unidentified perpetrators were not local residents, said the Magelang administration would repair all of the damaged graves. The incident in Magelang occurred a month after residents of Purbayan in neighboring Yogyakarta cut off the top of a cross on the grave of their Catholic neighbor, saying the cemetery was for Muslims only.
 
Paulus Christian Siswantoko of the Indonesian Bishops Conference said the incidents should send a warning to the government about the need to protect the country’s religious minorities against growing intolerance and violence. Meanwhile, Jakarta-based Human Rights Watch researcher Andreas Harsono said the government officials’ and security forces’ lenience toward harassment and intimidation of religious minorities was one of the reasons behind the prevailing religious intolerance and violence in Indonesia.
 
 
BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC NEWS AND HEADLINES
 
Breakthrough needed to spur oil and mining investment
Investor Daily, Headline
 
In 2018, the realization of the total investments in the energy and mineral resources sector increased from last year’s. However, it amounted only US$32 billion or only 86 percent of the total target of $37.2 billion.
 
Of the total, the oil and gas sector absorbed US$12.3 billion, far below the targeted $16.8 billion, electricity sector received $11.3 billion, also below the targeted $ 12.2 billion, while those going to the mining sector totaled $6.8 billion, higher than the targeted $6.2 billion and those for new and renewable energy and energy conservation program reached $1.5 billion from the targeted $ 2 billion. With this performance, government is expected to make a policy breakthrough in order to increase investment in oil, energy and mining sector.
 
 
Large banks plan acquisition
Kontan, Headline
 
This year, a number of major banks plan to acquire other banks and non-bank financial companies this year to further boost their business. 
 
Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI), for an example, plans to acquire an insurance company which could cost about Rp1.5 trillion. With total budget of Rp 30 trillion, Bank Mandiri intends to acquire smaller banks. Similar to Bank Mandiri, Bank Central Asia (BCA) also plans to acquire two smaller banks with the total budget of Rp 4 trillion. Meanwhile, Bank Tabungan Negara (BTN) has allocated Rp 700 billion to expand its business including the opening of three new subsidiaries which will be involved in insurance, investment management, and multi-finance. Two of which will be established in 2019.
 
 
Number of internet users to reach 175 million in 2019
Investor Daily, Headline
 
The number of internet users is expected to raise by 32 million or 22.37 percent to 175 million in 2019  from 143 million according to the survey made by Association of Internet Providers’ (APJII) in 2017.
 
The Palapa Ring project, which involves undersea fiber-optic cable network in western and eastern part of Indonesia is currently under completion. By the first half of 2019, when the construction in the eastern area has been completed, all cities in Indonesia will have access to Internet. It is expected to be able to encourage the growth of e-commerce and other forms of digital economy in regions as well as development of smart cities and smart villages. 
 
 
Non-oil revenues fall short of target despite budget surplus
Bisnis Indonesia, p. 4
 
State revenues from non-oil and gas sector were still below the initial target, although the total state revenues recorded a surplus in 2018.
 
According to data from the Finance Ministry, the non-oil and gas revenues suffered a shortfall of about Rp 134.7 trillion from the initial target. It increased by Rp 6.5 trillion compared to the previous year. The shortfall was caused by number of factors including the weak performances of some of tax offices and the rise in the tax refunds.
 
 
Capital expenditure realization slow
Kontan, p. 2
 
Although realization of the state expenditures reaches the highest record, the capital expenditure declines.
 
According to the Finance Ministry, the realization of state expenditure reaches Rp 2,202.2 trillion or 99.2 percent of the target of Rp 2,220.7 trillion, which increased by 9.7 percent from the figure in 2017. As for the capital expenditure, the realization only reached Rp 184.9 trillion or 90.7 percent of the target of 203.9 trillion. Finance Minister Sri Mulyani said that the lower than expected capital expenditure realization is due to technical problems in a number of ministries and institutions which had led to the delay in the projects, which among other include the construction of irrigation, dam, road, and train railways.