Denny's World & Thought

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Domestic Violence

In the past two months, there were so many violence cases reported by news paper or television. House wife was killed by her husband, Husband burnt his wife for resisting to make love to him, a maid pass away in a hospital after months of torture by her employer while her colleague worker at the same house also suffered physical abuse, were just a few that were caught by news media.

Just this week, again we were presented with domestic violence case, but this time coming from overseas, from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to be precise. The house maid from Indonesia was forced by her employer to work for 20 hours a day without pay and she was physically abused with many evidence on her body. She was rescued by a fireman from the apartment's balcony at the 12th floor after she attempted to run away from her employer, who leave on the 15th floor, using rag and cloth as rope. This, by the way, was not the first time we heard this kind of news from overseas.

Indonesia is the fifth largest country in the world by population. Even though much have been done to educate the population, still there are so many Indonesian who do not have the opportunity to go for an intermediate education not to mention the higher education. Poverty is one of the root cause, even though the government had passed on decree for free education on the primary school. Yet, there are still many family who were forced to let their children to work at early age, just to earn some extra money to help their family. So, not surprising that you could encounter children at the traffic light junction begging for money to pedestrian and motorist passing by.

Sadly to say, there are still so many homework to do, but the government and the legislators are more concern on how to win the election rather than winning the heart of their people.


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Anti Smoking Campaign For Youngsters.

Today while having my lunch, there was a campaign sponsored by Ministry of Health to stop any form of tobacco advertisement where minor can access to this ads. To my delight, the campaign was involving students which happened to be also the target for the health campaign. This is a very good caused and it was supported by one of the senator which delivered the opening speech.

Indonesia is one of the biggest producer of tobacco in the world and one of the top five nations in the world in term of tobacco usage. Cigarette has been widely available every where and control of purchase by minor is more difficult to conduct than imposing the warning on the box of the cigarette.

One of the biggest influence of smoking to the children is, of course, the advertising. The billboard signs are very eyes catching and even major sport events are sponsored by one of the biggest cigarette brand in this country. Even though the ads on TV forbid of picture showing people with cigarette, children still can tell what kind of product the the ads are selling.

It is about time that the law maker and the government put a more stronger rule to protect our young generation.


Wednesday, May 03, 2006

It is frustrating to see the government insisting to amend the current labour law. Under the new proposal, an employee with more than 1 year of service can be sacked by the employer without any severance pay.

It seems that the government has a hidden agenda behind this. The huge demonstration by labour union on 1 May, which was praised by the government for the peaceful and well behaviour of all the demonstrator, only last for less than 24 hours and the Vice President's comments has stir up another protest and marching in front of the House of Parliament demanding to reject the bill.

The government seems to pro the business men rather than the people/labour. Maybe this is because we have too many senators (including Mr. Vice President) who are also having their own businesses and they have vested interest to see the cost of labour can be squeezed to the minimum. Perhaps the government also trying to make Indonesia more attractive to the international investors by sacrifying the welfare of Indonesian labour and to promote cheap labour to keep the labour intensive jobs still in this country. The government keep forgetting the cost of a product not depends only on labour cost. There are also many component that made up the final cost. And in this country, the inefficiency cost is among the highest in the world due to corruption that occur almost in all level of business chain.

If the government focus on getting the inefficiency sorted out, our product and services will be much more competitive and therefore we do not have to bow to investors who want to enjoy master-slave relationship instead of mutual win-win relationship.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Unlawful Morale Movement

We are seeing more and more morale movements in this country. Recently the government try to pass the Anti Pornography & Porn-act (APP) Law which stir up the heat with pro and cons everywhere. The news report below is one of the excess as a result of APP, eventhough the law is not yet accepted by the House of Parliament. The draft of the APP law is trying to control people and is very gender-biased. It is against the principle of democracy and against Indonesia's principle of "Unity in Diversity" which respect the pluralism.

Instead of passing this APP law, the government should think of how to control the unlawful morale movement groups which are mostly very emotional and do not hesitate to use violence in voicing their beliefs. These groups have become a disturbance to the society, even the policemen dare not to take action against these group.


Experts decry sexist bylaws as threat to the nation
The Jakarta Post, Jakarta
Friday, 21-April-2006.

The crop of bylaws on sex and morality, which have been enforced by several regencies and municipalities, are unconstitutional, gender-biased and threaten to splinter the country, experts warn.
A researcher from the Freedom Institute, Syaiful Mujani, said the Constitution's guarantee of gender equality was contravened by several rulings that treat women as second-class citizens whose behavior should be carefully monitored.
Many municipalities have made sharia-inspired bylaws on public behavior, with a focus on morality and, inevitably in a patriarchal society, the conduct of women.
In Tangerang, the administration issued a bylaw stating any women in public after 7 p.m. would be considered prostitutes and arrested. Syaiful described the bylaw as "humiliating" to women.
There were demands for the administration to withdraw the bylaw after public order officers arrested a pregnant married woman on her way home after work. The officers accused her of being a sex worker, fined her Rp 300,000 and detained her for four days.
"The government must take action to review all bylaws so that the bylaws do not run counter to the Constitution," he said after the launching of five books, published by the Freedom Institute and publishing house Yayasan Obor Indonesia.
Other areas also are pushing through moralistic regulations, often derived from sharia principles.
In South Sulawesi, several regency administrations make it obligatory for female civil servants to wear Islamic attire. Government employees are required to be able to read and write Arabic.
Currently, Depok City Council, south of Jakarta, is preparing a bylaw on sex workers, alcohol and morality. The bylaw has been discussed by the council, and some Muslim groups, including the Islamic Defenders Front and the Indonesian Ulemas Council.
According to Syaiful, the state has the obligation to protect its citizens without discriminating between the sexes. The government must first set out a clear platform as the reference for municipalities wanting to formulate bylaws. "The platform must refer to the Constitution," he said.
A researcher from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences, Mochtar Pabotinggi, agreed that bylaws proscribing sexual behavior and morality violated the essence of democracy, which is contained in the Indonesian Constitution.
"In a democracy, no majority group can dominate others," he said.
He said that the bylaws concerned only Muslim groups's interests and ignored those of other religious beliefs.
"We have to respect other people who have different religions and not push them to do what Islam teaches. For instance, we cannot tell every woman who lives in Aceh to wear Muslim attire."
He added that in the past four years, the regional autonomy program had paid no attention to the existence of the state. "The state is important to unite a nation despite all the differences, especially a country such as Indonesia," he said.
"Many municipalities have made their bylaws without referring to the Indonesian Constitution's stipulations concerning pluralism."
The administrations should remember the country's multiethnic, multireligious composition, he added, before pushing through bylaws pandering to the interests of one group, even if it is the majority.
"Our Constitution appreciates pluralism as an Indonesian way of life. Administrations have to make bylaws that do not contradict the Constitution," he said.
"We cannot utilize two systems of law to regulate a society. The bylaws have the potential to endanger the country's unity since they ignore the essence of pluralism." (05).