President calls for integrated development planning in Papua

"I asked each ministry or institution, local governments, not to work separately. They must be focused and integrated in order to improve people`s welfare," Jokowi said.
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Development planning and its implementation in Papua should be done in an integrated way, President Joko Widodo told his aides in a cabinet meeting Tuesday.

"I asked each ministry or institution, local governments, not to work separately. They must be focused and integrated in order to improve peoples welfare," the president, widely known as Jokowi, said.

The president reiterated that development in Papua is not merely touching the issue of budget adequacy.

The governments budget in 2016 fiscal year has allocated a total Rp85.7 trillion of fund for Papua and West Papua.

"This is a huge amount of funds, but the allotted budget is unequal to the improvement of peoples welfare we want to reach," he added.

The problem was not merely on the amount of funds but on the planning process that has yet to involve integrated sectors and regions, making the development expenditure ineffective, he pointed out.

"I have information that 46 percent of ministries or institutions tend to choose regions where (the development planning) can be implemented more easily," he said.

Many districts in Papua are located in remote areas, but it should not be used to justify such moves, he admitted.

"Therefore it should be fixed and improved," the president added.

He called on all parties to focus on improving access to health and education, in a bid to upgrade the Papuans quality of life.

The Human Development Index in Papua has increased by 0.5 point although it still stood below 60.

"I want to see acceleration of basic infrastructure development as well as inter-region, districts and cities connectivity. This acceleration is important to create an equal development and justice for the people," Jokowi said.

On the other hand, the one fuel price policy has indicated a collective effort to materialize justice for all Indonesians, he added.

He expressed hope that the policy could encourage economic growth, reduce cost for transportation and logistics, and lower commodities price.

Development in Papua should consider human rights values and good governance, while maintaining local traditions, and local communities should be involved in the development process.

"Use the cultural approach that pays respect to local wisdom, and put Papuans as the subject who plays an important role in the development of Papua," Jokowi said.(*)

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