Exploring Commitment to New Nation’s Leaders: Make Indonesia the World’s Maritime Axis!

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A public discussion entitled “Measuring the Commitment of Presidential Candidates 2019-2014: Is the Sea the Maritime Axis of the Nation” trying to explore the perspective of Indonesia’s future leaders about the Indonesian sea. (EcoNusa Foundation/Moch Fikri)

The echo of the environment was no longer heard during the election campaign for the presidential and vice presidential candidate pairs for 2019-2024. The narrative of saving the environment, both on land and at sea, seems to be absent from the hectic politics since the candidate pair was officially determined by the General Election Commission (KPU).

During the 2014-2019 presidential and presidential election (presidential and vice-presidential) campaign, public memory was loomed with the slogan and the ideal of “Towards a World Maritime Axis”. Four years later these ideals no longer sound as if we are back to the sea. In fact, marine management is a mandatory duty to protect natural resources and human welfare. In the five-year momentum of the presidential election this maritime issue must be promoted, and in the future it will be included in the work agenda of the new elected presidential election period.

In addition to discussing efforts to protect marine ecosystems, the welfare of fishermen and traditional communities in coastal areas is also a major focus which should be discussed. The problem of the sea is not only limited to how to protect the biota contained in the sea from extinction, but how to prosper the welfare of fishermen and traditional communities in coastal areas. The irony of the survival of fishermen in all corners of Indonesia is still very far from the word prosperous even today.

Presidium Council of the People’s Coalition for Fisheries Justice (KIARA), Sukarnan when interviewed in a public discussion “Measuring the Commitment of Presidential Candidates 2019-2014: Is the Sea Still the Maritime Maritime Axis”, Tuesday (02/12/2019), revealed that fishermen and traditional communities in coastal areas have not yet prosperous. Law (Law) No. 7 of 2016 which discusses the Protection and Empowerment of Fishermen, Fish Cultivators, and Fishers, is still not in tune with the contents of the Act so that it faces many challenges.

The challenge is the problem of gram import which affects the traditional gram farmer business. The development of tourism and recognition of fishermen. The KIARA data explains that like in Semarang for example, along the coast of Semarang it has been occupied by capital owners. With a beach length of 22.71 Km it has been controlled by the capital owner, and only 40% is publicly owned. Not to mention the findings in the field that tell the difficulty of fishermen insurance access by women fishermen. Due to the lack of recognition of the professional status of women fishermen. Women fishermen are often compared to fishermen households and even laborers.

For this reason, Sukarnan appealed to fishermen, fishers, or cultivators, it is important to criticize the vision and mission of the two presidential camps, because people who depend their lives on marine products and fisheries are the front guard for Indonesia’s marine development. “Our sea area is broader than the land area, unfortunately I see that the policy still has its back to the sea, not seeing the sea as a top development priority. “Our oceans should be an important priority and not just be used in political events,” he explained.

When met in person, Rosdinal Salim as Spokesperson for the National Campaign Team Joko Widodo-Maruf Amin explained that Indonesia is a strategic and very large country. Rosdinal said that since 2014 Jokowi has Nawacita, and especially for the sea Jokowi’s vision is to sharpen and realize Indonesia as a maritime country that is independent, advanced, strong and based on national interests.

“The concentration of the government, especially in the Jokowi administration, is the first that our sea is truly independent and strong. Second, the natural resources are really for the welfare of its people, fishermen, also for tourism and others, “said Rosdinal.

Rosdinal said she was optimistic that pair number one Joko Widodo-Maruf Amin could bring changes to the welfare of the Indonesian seas in a better direction. “The point is that the welfare of fishermen is a top priority. Regional welfare and local wisdom must be able to benefit from the marine wealth owned in their respective regions. The key is one, which is sustainable, “he explained.

Furthermore, revealed by the General Chairperson of the Indonesian Maritime Policy Council 1999-2002 period, Son Diamar, whoever becomes the president, he can make Indonesia a leading maritime nation in the world. According to Son in building maritime maritime Indonesia needs to see from various aspects, including human resources (HR), society and culture, marine-based economic development, tourism related to the sea, shipping systems, marine spatial management, defense and security, and legal system.

“Do not sale natural resources. Whoever the president is can make Indonesia a leading maritime country in the eyes of the world, “he concluded.

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