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on a modern Civil Society: The Indonesian Case1

Bacharuddin Jusuf Habibie2 There are some common basic principles for any modern Society that must be fulfilled such as: Freedom Independence Pluralism Human Rights balanced with Human Responsibilities Values Justice and Prosperity The question is, how to achieve this today in a Well-informed Global Society that is: Low Cost and Low Risk, High Quality and Constitutional. Whether a society lives within a Kingdom, Republic or a Common Market like Europe, ASEAN or any other form of State depends on various cultural, historical, political and pragmatic considerations. As enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, it is the interest of peace among people and nations, not to interfere in the Internal Affairs of any other nations/society. With the accumulated experience of more than 6 decades in a fast changing world, the United Nations and its network should give more attention to adjusting its system with the Globalized World of today. In the work of the UN, concerns about Human Rights must be balanced with Human Responsibilities. The impact of global changes and the need for appropriate adjustments must be given special attention. The UNs organizational mechanism deserves special attention too.
1 Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum: CULTURE, EDUCATION, MEDIA shaping a sustainable world, INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE, 25 27 June 2012 Bonn, Germany. 2 Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dr. Sc. h.c. mult. , Former President oft he Republic of Indonesia (1998, 1999) 1

The world and its problems today is totally different to the time when the United Nations and its network were founded. Currently states and societies have their own systems or mechanisms for developing, adjusting and improving their respective Constitutions for a better and higher Quality of Life, according the will of their own people. The people create and it is also the same people that have to solve their own problems and make the flow of objective and subjective-appropriate Information for getting high quality decisions, as fast as possible. Where and how to get the right Information at the right time, fast and with high quality? Freedom of the Press might be the solution. The local, as well as domestic and international news through E-Paper, E-News or other Social Network s like YouTube, Twitter, Facebook etc. are Information Networks available through the high quality hard- and software of Smart Phones, Smart Pad, Smart Notebook and other Smart electronic equipment at low cost. The technology innovation and development will exceed the power well beyond nano technologies. How can we guaranty the quality and objectivity of incoming Information? How can we rely on them? Will freedom of the press, free competition and transparency help? How can we avoid manipulation of Information? How can we prevent Money politics misusing the freedom of the Press? There are many more questions to be answered. An exchange and transfer of experience among societies could contribute to increasing the quality of Information. An Intercultural Dialogue will trigger and could give more information and understanding about Cultural Values like Morals and Ethos. Tolerance between people and societies is better for supporting a win-win sustainable cooperation in science, technology and economic development interdependency and productivity to increase competitiveness in sharing and creating jobs needed for a sustainable equity distribution of income and wealth. Because of that, political stability and economic growth will increase Human Security needed to sustain progress towards justice and prosperity.

Civil Society plays a very important role in developing a modern society as it becomes more transparent and predictable. Economics, educational, science and technological infrastructure development will systematically increase the productivity and competiveness of the people and society and so on To prepare the people of the Civil Society, each family has to be informed and re-educated, so that they have access to healthy drinking water, food and a better understanding for an upbringing process compatible to their culture and religion. Please allow me to tell you about the implementation of the above- mentioned thoughts during my Presidency between 21 May 1998 and 21 October 1999. More detailed report and data are available in my book Decisive Moment or 517 Tagen, the English and German translations of the original book in the Indonesian language, Detik-Detik yang Menentukan, published in 2006. In March 1998 The People Assembly of the Republic of Indonesia re-elected President Suharto. I was elected a day after the election of the President as Vice President. Two month afterward on the 21 of May 1998, President Suharto resigned. Constitutionally I became the third President of Indonesia and had the duty to convene a Special Peoples Assembly for electing a new President and Vice President. Instead I organized a Special Peoples Assembly to revise the Peoples Assembly decree from March 1998, comprising inter alia of the decisions to: To bring forward the next general election from 2003 to 1999. Open participation in the next election to any political party as long as it meets the criteria for becoming a political party and adhere to the existing Constitution Hold the Peoples Assembly of the Republic of Indonesia 3 months after the election in October 1999 to elect a new President and Vice President To make other necessary new social-political and social- economical Peoples Assembly decrees as the bases and start of the Reformation. What was the secret and reason that in spite of the high political instability marked by daily demonstrations in almost all big cities; the free fall off the Indonesian currency, the rupiah; high inflation rate; high unemployment

rate; and chaotic conditions - the Reformation went mostly according to plan in a systematic manner? Ideally in the modern history of Indonesia the three branches of Power, 1. Legislative Power (People Assembly and Parliament) 2. Executive Power (Represent by the President and Vice President) 3. Judicative Power, would never controlled by one Man. During the New Order period of President Suharto 1. In the People Assembly the GOLKAR Fraction, The Province Delegate Fraction and the Armand Forces Fraction for the last 30 years prior to 1998 formed a coalition, representing more than 60% of the Votes in the Parliament as well as in the Peoples Assembly. This coalition was coordinated and chaired by a Chairman and several alternating chairmans. 2. Because of the resignation of President Suharto, constitutionally the Vice President became the President 3. In the 53 years of authoritarian Leadership, President Sukarno and President Suharto had made the judiciary subordinated to the President. Three months before I was elected as the Vice President, I became the only Chairman without any alternating Chairman of the traditional Coalition with more than 80 % votes in the Parliament and in the People Assembly. Immediately after the resignation of President Suharto, one man suddenly controlled the Executive and Legislative branches. The influence of the same man in the Judiciary was also very high. I was very much aware that this development was unhealthy and against the principles of Trias Politika of Montesquieu and could trigger a revolution, chaos and anarchy! If this happened, the victim will be many innocent people. Indonesia could dissolve into many New States! The world will have an additional unstable region, South East Asia! Trias Politika introduce by Montesquieu in 1748 was applied 250 years later in May 1998 by adding another dimension of Power to become Quadra Politika: 1. Legislative Power 2. Executive Power 3. Judicative Power 4. Media Power

Never to be controlled by one Man. The situation at the time was highly unpredictable and had a very negative influence on the daily life and political stability. Many confusing so called top-secret reports from the Intelligence of the Armed Forces, Foreign Minister, Ministry of Internal Affairs and others added to the uncertainty. Could I trust them? Whom to be trusted? Some Reports were contradictory The problems started to become more unpredictable and dangerous. There were many concerns expressed by international observers that Indonesia might suffer disintegration like the former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia during their difficult political transitions. Based on facts and analysis, I recognised the Peoples Power expressed through demonstrations and through a Free Press should form the fourth pillar that can assist in changing unpredictability to become predictable! That was the only reason why in the first day after the resignation of the President I official allowed the people to demonstrate, discuss etc. As long as they did not commit criminal acts! In spite of many contrary advices, I declared the freedom of Press and freedom to speak and freedom to demonstrate. I instructed the release of all political prisoners except those who acted against the Constitution. All the People of Indonesia contributed directly and indirectly to prevent the worst chaos and anarchy from happening! In 517 Days of my Presidency we made every day an average of 1,3 new Law, new Presidential Decree etc. that became the bases of our reformation for a better future. Please allow me to give you all the following Information. The Population distribution of Indonesia based on inhabited islands are as follows: 58% in Java, 20% di Sumatra, 7 % in Sulawesi, 6% in Kalimantan, 6% in Bali & Nusa Tenggara 3% in Maluku & Papua.

The total land territory of the Republic of Indonesia is 1.910.931 km2 with an average population density of 124 people / km2, where the most densely populated province being DKI Jakarta (14.440 people / km2) and the least densely populated being West Papua (8 people / km2). Based on the 2010 National Census, Indonesia's population is 237,556,363, with 119,507,580 (50.31%) male and 118.048.783 (49.69%) female Based on the 2010 National Census, the citizens of Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia can be categorized based on their ethnic groups, as follows: 41,7 % ethnic Javanese, 15,4 % ethnic Sundanese, and 42,9 % otherethnicgroups.

Profile of Indonesian Population

Ethnic Java (%) 41,7

Others Total (%)

42,9 100
41.7 %

China 15.4 % Malay Madura Batak Betawi Bugis Arab Others
42.9 %

Rank 1 2 3 4 5 6

% (absolute)

% (relative)

3,7 3,4 3,3 3 2,7 2,5 2,5 2,4 19,4

8,62 7,92 7,69 42.9 % 6,99 6,29 5,83 5,83 5,59 45,22


7 8 9

Total (%)



Ethnic Chinese at 3.7% are the 3rd largest after Javanese (41.7%) and Sundanese (15,4%). Between 300 to 500 ethnic communities exist within the Unitary Republic of Indonesia (NKRI) including those who orinally came from China, the Middle East, India, and Europe and have lived here for centuries and have

assimilated to become part of the community of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia. Almost all migrants who came were motivated by their desire to improve their quality of life with their skills, technology and hard work with low cost. They were hard workers and were willing to work in any field they could find jobs. Immigrants with this type of hard-working culture were then taken advantage of by the colonials as "brokers" who were productive and apolitical to establish a trustworthy and reliable middle class. According to the Overseas Chinese Culture Center of 2012, of the Top 20 ethnic Chinese in the world (36,965,938), a majority live in multi-ethnic Indonesia, 7,566,200 (20.47 %). Those living in Singapore rank fifth with 2,684,900 (7.26%) and those living in The Netherlands with 144,928 (0.39%) rank last. Ranking in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th live in Thailand (19.08%), Malaysia (16.74%) dan USA (9.13%) respectively.
Overseas Chinese Population in 20 Rank Countries
(Overseas Chinese Culture Center, 2012)

Indonesia Thailand Malaysia U S A

20.47 19.08 16.74 9.13

1 2 3 4

Russia Australia Japan Kampuchea

2.7 1.66 1.41 0.93

11 12 13 14

Canada Peru Vietnam Philippines

4.36 3.52 3.42 3.1

6 7 8 9

France India Laos Brazil

0.62 0.51 0.5 0.42

16 17 18 19







The 2011World Factbook records that of the overseas Indian population that live in ASEAN, the highest are found in Malaysia (82.54%), Singapore (13.55%) and Indonesia (3.91%) from an overall total in ASEAN of 2,784,458 ethnic Indians.

Overseas Indian Population in ASEAN Countries

(Worl Factbook, 2011)

COUNTRY Malaysia

(%) 82.54


Singapore Indonesia

13.55 3.91

2 3

The 2011World Factbook 2011 also records that with the overseas Arab population that live in ASEAN, the highest are found in Indonesia (82,21%), The Philippines (9.4%), Malaysia (4.7%) and Singapore (3.69%) from a total of 298.000 ethnic Arabs living in ASEAN.
Overseas Arabian Population in ASEAN Countries
(Worl Factbook, 2011)



1 2

Philippines Malaysia

9.4 4.7


The first wave of ethnic Chinese that came to Indonesia came around the 16th Century, the second wave (the biggest) came during the 19th Century. Most left the Chinese mainland because of economic pressures where they were not able to develop. Different to the ethnic Chinese, the ethnic Indian

and Arabs specifically came to Indonesia to trade and to spread their religions (Hindu dan Islam). Although 41.7% of Indonesians are of Javanese descent, pragmatic reasoning was used to determine that the lingua franca, Bahasa Indonesia, be based on the Malay language (despite ethnic Malays only being 3.4% of the population). This is one of the reflections of high tolerance values of a pluralistic community. If we study the development of human resources in the United States of America and go as far back to when Christopher Columbus discovered America in 1492 (520 years ago), we can see that motivated by political, economic and religious problems in their home country, immigrants from different ethnicities came from the east and the west and their population increased. Indigenous peoples slowly became a minority and became insignificant. Only after 284 years since the discovery of America, the people of The United States declared their Independence from the the British and the French colonialist powers. Now, the US has transformed into a developed pluralistic and free society which is governed by a modern democratic system. However, through their ups and downs, democracy and human rights in the US has developed via many sacrifices: civil war, terrorist attacks and so on. What becomes interesting is that after 233 years of independence, the people of the United States of America elected Barack Obama, a man of African descent as President for the first time. The Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia has always been a pluralistic State. Migrants coming in from other nations and States have assimilated with the pluralistic Indonesia. In the fight for our Nation's independence and freedom, it was not just the ethnic groups of Java, Sumatra, Sulawesi, Papua, Maluku and so on that fought and sacrificed themselves. The ethnic Chinese, Arabs and Europeans also gave their contributions. It is therefore just and wise that after several generations, these migrants are now treated like natives. So much so that we mention them as ethnic Arabs, ethnic Europeans, ethnic Chinese and ethnic Indians alongside our ethnic Bugis, ethnic Javanese and so on. Or in other words we simply know them as Indonesian citizens.

The Indonesian Nation has to rely for its future on this Renewable Human Resources which finance its level of productivity from the income of its Natural Resources and Renewable Natural Resources. The ability of human resources to develop science and technology as a process that can produce high quality, built on schedule and at low costs value-added products, as demanded by the market, will be largely determined by the skills and productivity of the human resources. The upbringing process is very much determined by culture, religion or belief and influences the behaviour and character of human resources. Understanding the mechanism of science and technology can be achieved through a good education system. A positive synergy of culture, religion, science and technology will increase the productivity and competiveness of the human recourses. Infrastructure of Upbringing and Education Network Systems has to be developed and given high priority! Being aware of the fast development of Global Social Network technology and the possibility of bringing other cultural values into the private life of any family, I took the initiative to take measures by increasing Cultural Resilience by giving Freedom to the Provinces to ensure regional autonomy and empowering local Cultural Resilience. This will also contribute to their productivity increase. The process of upbringing becomes predominantly rooted and established within the family, the clan and the community. Local cultures and religions have a major influence. The process of Education takes place at schools and the workplace. Where schools do not exist for human resources, it is impossible that they will be adequately skilled. Even if human resources are already skilled, but do not have jobs, then it is impossible for them to increase their competitiveness. Only a skilled and productive human resources can respond to challenges and resolve problems. Only skilled and productive human resources are able to make superior products that can harness the "benefits" and control the "threats" of Indonesias natural assets such as Indonesias Maritime Continent.

Throughout the world population, whose numbers have reached more than 6.8 billion people,and is continuing to grow, there are needs for: 1. Food, protein, carbohydrates and cellulose 2. Drinking water, industrial and agro-industrial water 3. Medications and vitamins for health 4. Renewable and non renewable energy 5. Transport and communications. In the Maritime Continent of Indonesia there is a lot of information about the life and environment, data that can be utilized for the development of points 1, 2, 3 and 4 as mentioned above. For example, proteins from fish farming either from freshwater and seawater where the water temperature and oxygen content in water has not been contaminated. Tuna farming in certain bays is very possible and should be developed further. For example, rainfall in some areas of the Indonesian maritime continent such as in Java and Papua should not be returned to the seas, but should instead be recycled. River waters like the one in Brantas that flows into the sea can be routed through a large pipe to the island of Madura for irrigation and so on. In the area of Memberano, the water from the river Memberano can generate electrical energy for energy intensive industries like aluminum and industrial metals and manufacturing industries. Also it can provide irrigation water for agro industries growing in the region of Memberano. DNA and chromosomal information from all the lives and environments found in Indonesia's maritime continent can provide data and innovation for the manufacture of new drugs. Special electrical energy and renewable energy fuels can be developed and utilized for transportation and communications industries. Electricity industry of low-temperature geothermal potential is high enough to drive an electric rail transport networks in Java, Sumatra and Sulawesi. Electricity from the wind (wind energy), ocean currents between the islands in the straits of the Lesser Sunda islands should also be used to increase the generation of renewable electricity. Biofuels like bio-ethanol, biogas from animal waste at farms and slaughterhouses can help address the needs of the local electrical energy.

The future of indonesia clearly relies on the strength of the power of human resources, with a population structure that is pluralistic, democratic, upholding human rights and human obligations, cultured, independent, free and responsible is bright. This can only be achieved if the processes of upbringing and education continue to run smoothly and assuredly. For that, there are requirements to be met, namely: Families that are prosperous, peaceful and cultured Equitable and affordable education for all according to their talents Equal employment opportunities available to improve productivity and competitiveness. Increase the Intercultural dialog among the many ethnic groups Develop advantages from the cultural diversity to become excellent in making innovation and workmanship. Make a sustainable progress towards justice and prosperity through an intensive win-win coopertation with other societies and countries