Open Government: Is Indonesia Ready?


Aveline Agrippina Tando

Student of International Relations, Parahyangan Catholic University

Bandung, Indonesia

 

One of the proudest things in Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY)’s presidency is Indonesia became the founding countries of Open Government Partnership. Open Government Partnership (OGP) is an international organization promoting transparency and participatory in a government institute to make an openness, effective, and accountable government. With this movement, the founding countries have realized them directly responsible to their people via monitoring and participating. OGP supports the openness to promote transparency, increase civic participation, fight corruption, and efficient the technological sophistication.

Indonesia -under President’s Delivery Unit for Development Monitoring and Oversight, State Ministry of National Development Planning, Ministry of Communication and Information, Centre of Information Committee, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and four Non-governmental Organizations- created a movement to support the openness called Open Government Indonesia (OGI). The OGI establishment is a proof from Indonesia to lead the openness, which is based on transparency and participation. Learned from Arab Spring phenomenon that requiring the governments to more open, Indonesian government realized the importance of transparency and participatory to prevent that ever happened in Indonesia in Soeharto’s presidency.

In some speeches, President SBY pushed the importance of openness to build this country. Undang-undang No. 14 Tahun 2008 about Public Information Openness becomes the Indonesia’s cornerstone to step into the openness. The awareness of the importance of openness made transparency bureau era was being started. The implementations of open government in Indonesia are transparency in budget and supported technology information advances applications. These implementations have made the better change in bureaucratization system in Indonesia; for example, Ambon government has been starting Open Budget, a way to prevent the corruption via uploading the budget report in its site. This is the first step to be good governance, particularly in budget management transparency.

Via not only OGI, but also some cities in Indonesia have started the open government movement by their selves. Yogyakarta Government has utilized online system in public transportation named mTransport DIY that can be accessed in mobile phone. Yogyakarta citizens possibly know much information about city bus routes, Transjogja routes, flights and trains schedules, and CCTV for traffic conditions.

Eventually, in the beginning of 2013, Indonesia got score 62 and sat on the 20 of 100 most transparency countries in the world. International Budget Partnership (IBP) has released Open Budget Survey 2012. This result made Indonesia become the most transparency countries in South East Asia. There is no reason for Indonesia to not proud of the much progressed in transparency. It also means open government in Indonesia has been fared well. This becomes one of the highest achievements for Indonesia to build a better country.

With technology advancement and the awareness of openness, open government is a way to create a new face of Indonesia. Open government created the easy of information accessing, high quality education, fighting corruption, health and safety, and practically reporting of problems. To support this movement, the feeling of optimism should be built firstly. Without it, too impossible to believe the changing in Indonesia will be happened.

Open government is not a new thing in this world. The pursuit of openness is a serious thing for some countries, such as United States, Russia Federation, and United Kingdom. The determents of high intensity of corruption and authoritarian regime have made awareness for government and public. The principal of open government is transparency and participation as the equation of accountability, effectiveness, and efficiency. Indonesia has been doing the both of them. Transparency is necessary for government, either in central government or in local government. All that government has done can be accounted in public area. Participation is a support proof for government from public to observe and review that government have done and reported it appropriately and accurately.

Open government is one of many chances that public and government have. No need to create an innovation and a new concept for a better Indonesia, we can do the better with what have already existed and done. Why do not we continue the best one than create a new one that starting from the zero point? Open government movement has started since the collapse of new order regime. Seeing the need of public in openness and feeling the public surfeit in authoritarian regime that did corruption and the monetary crisis as the impact of that, open government have tried to answer the problems.

Transparency that has done by government could not be success if the public does not support with real participation. Participation is a real contribution from the public to give opinions greater and government could be more responsive to the problems. Open government is not only one side, but also government and public do contact and interact to solve the problem. Open government gives a chance to government and public working together. Therefore, the gap between government and public can be closer. Participation from public can be increased and transparency from government can be better from day to day.

The politic value with openness is closing the manipulation of data that ever happened in governance. Corruption, collusion, and nepotism are not something foreign in governance. With openness, public can reach the easier to give their opinions, review, and observing that government did. In the end, open government is not about democracy, but a truth from government as a form of accountability that supported by public.

There is no country without government and citizens. With the technology advancement and the global challenging, it is not impossible to create open government as a real initiative to make a better Indonesia. Government has provided everything that easing public to access the information, give their opinions, or oversee many things that government has done. Open government can be an alternative for Indonesia to raise the optimism of corruption decreasing, the care government, and easier and practical in every single life.

Development and open government is like one of a parallel rope that cannot be separated. Reviewing from now Indonesia condition, the preparation to be an openness country has been seen clearly. In central government, every official department should have a Managing Officer for Information and Documentation to manage all public information and publish them appropriately. In local government, the central government supports the local to give their contribution for open government as a part of better movement with open data, open budget, and e-office.

Simply, open government can be still exist if government and public want to work together via transparency and participatory, and the feeling of optimism that openness can be fought in Indonesia always increase. Without them, it will be a hard way for open government in Indonesia to have a fine position to support openness. Nothing is impossible for create Indonesia as one of openness, truth, and good countries. Open government is a way to create a better Indonesia. There is no worry for Indonesia as a ready country to be an open country that seeing from the preparation and the acts. It will be better if the public realize the importance of participation in government is a best way to support open government in Indonesia.

The optimism and supported words of open government presence was issued by President SBY in his speech 16th August 2012, “We must complete the management of government by the expansion of public participation, starting from the participation of development until opening up public access in order to participate in the control of government management. This is an essential part of government involving public participation. This is the essence of open government.”


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