Ombudsman and Urban Economy Policy [IUTC – Urban Economy – Local Economic Activation]

Ombudsman as a watchdog body on public services and the maladministration of public service delivery by the State was formed to support the reform of Indonesia.  In accordance with Indonesian development strategy 2004-2014 which focuses on education and economic improvement ahead of AFTA and the AEC, the Ombudsman of the Republic of Indonesia has also made ​​public service improvement in Economy and Education to be the main concern of the organization.

Urban Economy – Local Economic Activation at this stage and its correlation with the Ombudsman, is mainly because it has significance resemblance with the main concern of Ombudsman Republic of Indonesia, an improvement of economy in so many levels and better education for all. Related with Local Economic Activation, meaning, the priority would be based on the empowerment of the people especially those who lives in rural areas and those who considered vulnerable community.

The aim of reforms in Indonesia is a change in attitude and mindset. Firstly it was targeted for bureaucrats. Later on the government realizes that to reach its target in economy development and to control urbanization, under the regional autonomy policy it has to enhance the economy level of rural areas. Therefore reforms have to be activated also in kampongs, villages and satellites cities.

The role of Ombudsman

Ombudsman serves under the principle of impartiality and neutrality. Those principles become the strong points of Ombudsman. The government is still lacking of public trust, while Ombudsman can play its role as trustworthy advisor, mediator and become an intermediary agency between public service providers and users. Ombudsman also manages data collection, research and survey. A plan has to be developed with strong and reliable data. Ombudsman may works in fact finding mission and support the government with solid data as policy background later on.

In shorts Ombudsman can serve the community and at the same time assisting the government especially in the field of urban economy policy and from there to local economy activation.

  1. Change in mindset

First of all: change in mindset. Ombudsman itself has different organization culture compared of those working in bureaucracy; therefore it can support the government while assisting, socializing and promoting set of policies to enhance local economy.

In IUTC South Korea we were introduced with the “The New Community Movement” or “Saemaul Undong( ) “  for rural development in South Korea in the 1970s. Its success has inspired billions to copy and implement the program in rural areas. The South Korea government proposed Saemaul Undong Movement in rural communities to inspire the people and lead them into the progress of rural communities.

The Saemaul Undong Movement has been accepted by the United Nations as one of the efficient rural development models in the world. The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has decided to select the Saemaul Undong  Movement as a base model for the Sustainable Modernization of Agriculture and Rural Transformation (SMART) program in 2008. Also, the movement has been exported to more than 70 countries, sharing the rural development experience world-wide.*

A change in mindset means this movement has to inspire the people to have a better life. Saemaul Undong movement can be implemented in rural areas of Indonesia. The implementation of the program is expanding possibilities of promising better future for communities. With few adjustment and support from the government and Ombudsman, we can start this movement in Indonesia.

  1. Local, National, Regional and Mega Event

Almost every area in Indonesia has its own uniqueness. As a country with more than 300 ethnic groups, 150 local languages and dialects, Indonesia has so much potential. In micro level, a county, a municipal can turn its area specialty in to money machine. Not every area has rich natural resources in mining; however every area has its riches in different form, it might has culinary delights, tradition, art and craft, or scenery so beautiful it will attracts visitors from around the globe and it might become  a tourist destination.

After Bali bombing, tourism in Bali fall rock bottom. Bali was very depending on tourism at that time. Economy crashed. The government decided to host many international events in Bali, promoting that Bali is safe to visit. The program works. Now, Bali has once again gain its international popularity as one of the top tourism destination.

In fact, Indonesia is not just Bali. Every area has its own potential. Every potential has to be managed carefully. With creativity, we can start a local, national, regional even mega event. In the end, hosting an event can boost local economy by hundreds of percent.

 **to be continued

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