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  • Fiadhira Rasyah

Analyzing Presidential Candidates’ Commitments to Culture

It's undeniable that many of us, as youth, feel uncertain when choosing our future president. Instead of abstaining from voting due to a lack of understanding, it's crucial to recognise that each individual vote has a significant cumulative impact. The collective power of these votes can shape the election outcome and profoundly affect the lives of the Indonesian people. To better understand the political landscape and uncover the values of presidential candidates, reading their vision and mission statements is essential. This allows us to grasp their core values and promises. As the younger generation, it's important for us to approach information with a thoughtful and discerning mindset.


Before we dive into the manifestos, The Nusantara Bulletin (TNB) strongly emphasises our commitment to offering insights into Indonesia's rich cultural treasure. TNB strives to underscore the significance of cultural values.


The inception of Undang Undang No. 24 2019 was driven by the notion that to foster a fair and prosperous society capable of promoting the general welfare, Indonesia should harness and optimize all economic resources. This includes a specific emphasis on maximising the creative potential of human resources rooted in cultural heritage, knowledge, and technology.


Indonesia is blessed with a wealth of cultural heritage that can be harnessed to create valuable products, contributing to overall prosperity through the development of the creative economy. The creative economy involves deriving added value from intellectual property based on human creativity, cultural heritage, knowledge, or technology. It's essential to scrutinise the vision and mission of upcoming presidential candidates, particularly to understand how they aim to propel Indonesia forward by prioritising the cultural sector and fostering the creative economy.

The presidential candidate's vision and mission, as registered with the General Election Commission (KPU), form a political manifesto. Why is it important to read political manifestos? It is crucial for voters to understand the ideological character and promises of each presidential and vice presidential pair. Unfortunately, only a few realise the significance of these visions and missions. The awareness of the importance of these political visions or manifestos has not yet reached all Indonesians, and only a portion of the Indonesian people understand the meaning of visions and missions; most either do not care or are unaware.

To delve deeper into the presidential candidates' proposals and avoid relying on potentially misleading statements circulating on social media, this article will solely focus on their registered vision and mission documents. Candidate No. 1, Anies-Muhaimin, has articulated their ideas and political promises in an extensive 143-page manifesto. Following closely, Candidate No. 2, Prabowo-Gibran, has presented their vision and mission in an 88-page document. Lastly, Ganjar-Mahfud, Candidate No. 3, has outlined their plans in a 66-page manifesto. By analysing these comprehensive documents, we can gain a more nuanced understanding of each candidate's proposed policies and commitments, steering clear of surface-level assessments and potential misinterpretations.


Presidential Candidate No. 1 seems to advocate for a policy framework centered on justice and prosperity in Indonesia. This theme consistently appears throughout their manifesto, echoing their main slogan and vision, "Indonesia makmur adil untuk semua" (a prosperous and just Indonesia for all). Anies-Muhaimin emphasises the idea that economic growth should benefit everyone, regardless of social class. The manifesto outlines eight missions under their "8 Jalan Perubahan" (8 Paths to Change).


One key focus is on establishing Indonesia as a strong brand identity. This involves optimising the tourism and creative industries to create globally recognised products and brands representing Indonesia. The strategy includes diversifying types of tourism and involving local communities to revive tourism. This approach not only aims at economic growth but also seeks to project a positive international image of Indonesia.


"Menjadikan kota sebagai inkubator kreativitas, ruang ekspresi, dan produsen karya seni/budaya dan olahraga, dengan mendorong tumbuh kembang industri kreatif, pusat-pusat kebudayaan dan seni, mengembangkan fasilitas olahraga, dan menghadirkan kegiatan yang mendorong kohesivitas warga." (Misi 4, Agenda 1)


English: "To make the cities an incubator of creativity, a space for expression, and a producer of artistic, cultural, and sports works by promoting the growth of the creative industry, cultural and artistic centres, developing sports facilities, and organising activities that encourage community cohesion." (Mission 4, Agenda 1)


Candidate Number 1's projects suggest a focus on linear growth, aiming to broaden opportunities in the economic, tourism, and cultural sectors. There is a notable shift towards decentralisation, as emphasised in Anies-Muhaimin's Vision and Mission, particularly on page 89. The term "pemerataan," or even distribution, indicates a commitment to distributing development more evenly across regions, moving away from a concentrated focus on the capital city. This reflects the goal of fostering balanced and inclusive development.


  • Prabowo Subianto and Gibran Rakabuming Raka (click here)

Candidate No. 2, Prabowo-Gibran, places a significant emphasis on fostering a national identity for Indonesia, encapsulated in their vision of "Bersama Indonesia Maju Menuju Indonesia Emas 2045" (Together Advancing Indonesia Towards Golden Indonesia 2045). The core values supporting their vision are meticulously detailed in the documents, structured hierarchically as foundational elements, pillars, and the upper structure of the pillar (roof).


While Candidate No. 2 appears dedicated to continuing the policies initiated by President Joko Widodo, or Jokowi, as highlighted in their vision on page 19, there might be concerns for some individuals due to the familial connection. The vice presidential candidate for No. 2 is the son of President Jokowi, raising questions about the potential concentration of power within a family. This aspect could be perceived as problematic in terms of ensuring fair governance and representation, even as they focus on fostering a strong national identity.

“Membangun kesadaran akan pentingnya pelestarian warisan budaya dan seni tradisional dengan meningkatkan partisipasi publik melalui pelibatan masyarakat, media, institusi perguruan tinggi, perusahaan swasta, dan BUMN. Memperluas dan mengintensifkan kerja sama dengan masyarakat dan komunitas dalam pengembangan kampung seni dan wisata budaya. Melengkapi dan memodernisasi tata kelembagaan dalam programme nasional perlindungan warisan budaya (cultural heritage)baik yang bersifat intangible (tak benda) seperti cerita-cerita tradisional (folklore), bahasa ibu, peribahasa lokal, kearifan lokal dan lagu tradisional, dan tangible (berwujud) seperti motif batik, seni ukir, alat musik, keris, prasasti, tugu kerajaan, candi serta keraton, dan istana.” (p.73)

"Building awareness of the importance of preserving cultural heritage and traditional arts by enhancing public participation through involvement of the community, media, academic institutions, private companies, and state-owned enterprises. Expanding and intensifying collaboration with communities in the development of cultural villages and tourism. Completing and modernising institutional arrangements in the national programme for the protection of cultural heritage, both intangible (non-material) such as traditional stories (folklore), native language, local proverbs, local wisdom, and traditional songs, and tangible (material) such as batik motifs, carvings, musical instruments, keris (traditional dagger), inscriptions, royal monuments, temples, and palaces." (p.73)

The document often uses words like "memperkokoh (strengthen)," "memperkuat (fortify)," and "melanjutkan (continue)," suggesting a preference for building on existing foundations. This language might indicate a potential focus on established ideas rather than generating new ones. Despite this, Prabowo-Gibran places importance on strengthening institutions from top to bottom, showing a commitment to support at all levels. The commitment to revitalise culture, create a lasting fund, and boost the creative economy, especially in the entertainment industry, seems beneficial for both cultural development and economic growth.


Last but not least, the political framework of presidential candidate No. 3, Ganjar-Mahfud, is driven by Industrialization 5.0, initiated through innovation and creativity. Their vision or slogan, "menuju Indonesia unggul, gerak cepat mewujudkan negara maritim yang adil dan lestari" (towards an excellent Indonesia, swiftly realising a just and sustainable maritime nation), underscores their belief in Indonesia's comprehensive supply chain, incorporating raw materials, skilled labour, and the country's maritime richness in natural resources. However, their vision and mission are less detailed compared to those of candidates 1 and 2, being relatively concise.

Moreover, candidate pairs 1 and 3 share values and have somewhat similar approaches to certain aspects. Consequently, their vision appears quite similar to that of candidate 1, emphasising the empowerment of the creative economy and the expansion of creative hub infrastructure across multiple regions, not limited to the capital city.


When envisioning the future of Indonesia, people may have different aspirations and priorities, such as economic development, social justice, environmental sustainability, and more. The qualities they seek in a leader might include transparency, accountability, empathy, and the ability to address the diverse needs of the population.


By reading the full vision and mission statements of the presidential candidates, you delve into the specifics of their plans, ideologies, and goals. This helps us voters make more informed decisions, ensuring that our chosen leader aligns with our values. Remember that a well-informed citizenry is crucial for the success of democracy, as it establishes that the government reflects the will of the people and can be held accountable. Let's cast our ballots with the awareness that the impact will resonate through the pages of our nation's history.

Sincerely, the Nusantara Bulletin.


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