TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo on Tuesday once again mentioned the budget absorption of state-ministries and agencies that he deemed too low in terms of handling the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I have ordered ministries and agencies to issue budgets which I monitor every single day. I will immediately remind the state minister and remind them personally if the spending is still too low,” said the president in a teleconference from Semarang on Tuesday, June 30.
Jokowi also reminded regional heads to utilize the special budgets and safety nets prepared for the national economic stimulus as it would directly affect the circulation of money among society.
Previous reports on the president’s cabinet plenary on June 18, President Jokowi’s words somewhat represented his frustration as he claims not all state ministers have a unified sense of crisis for Indonesia’s COVID-19 crisis. Jokowi also alleges that there had been no significant progress made by state-ministers in overcoming the pandemic.
President Jokowi warned that he will disband state agencies or reshuffle his Cabinet if necessary.
He also gave an example for the state budget on healthcare that has only spent 1.53 percent from the total of Rp75 trillion, which is the source for the government’s allocation on the COVID-19 crisis. Jokowi called for it to be used to pay the incentives for doctors and medical workers and purchase healthcare equipment.
“Spend it as soon as possible for the appropriate uses and on target so that it would trigger the [national economy],” said President Jokowi who noted that ‘extraordinary situations’ needs to see health budgets be spent 100 percent.