Sunday, October 18, 2009

Not a walk in the park no more to be an Indonesian Cabinet Minister

Every other Indonesian TV channels, print titles, online news portal, blogs are at it...and it has been a flurry of news and activities, especially in Puri Cikeas where President elect SBY will picked his 2009 to 2014 cabinet ministers for an interview.

What strikes me most is how President elect SBY go about his business in selecting and scrutinize the "would be" ministers. What is interesting is that it does not just stop at the 30 minutes interview, those selected would have to undergo an extensive health check by a team of about 30 specialist doctors topped up with a 500+ Q&A session on the individual's state-of-mind. An appropriate "fit and proper" test for such a demanding job.

Over and above this, those selected to be in the cabinet will have to sign a performance and integrity contract which covers their first 100 days, 1 year and 5 year job performances. It also covers area of morality and corruption. This effectively allows SBY to sack under performing Ministers without hassle from any political pressure or lobbying and intervention. This goes to show how serious SBY is to reform Indonesia and to "MENGABDI untuk rakyak" as promised in his campaign trial. Over the next 5 years, I would see Indonesia surpassed Malaysia in most areas of good governance, corruption index, democracy, upholding of the law, human rights, economy and living standards.

I can't help but try to reflect on how this is being done in Malaysia, which obviously is very much different that lean towards secrecy and total news black-out. The fact there is relatively free speech and press freedom in Indonesia speaks volume for itself as the people are well-informed and knows what they are in for when they decided to vote directly for their head of state. To me, this is a much better deal than what Malaysia has to offer. Having said this, it is in my hope that Malaysian leaders will take note and start reforming and start serving the rakyat.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Here's to wishing all a Happy Deepavali.

May the Lights brings joy, happiness, good health and prosperity to all.

And may the Lights also light up the path for peace on earth, understanding and mutual respect for mankind.

And to those celebrating, enjoy.