TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo announced a cabinet reshuffle this afternoon, December 22, 2020. State-Owned Enterprises (SOE) Deputy Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin was appointed as new Health Minister replacing Terawan Agus Putranto.
The appointment had been reportedly prepared since last October. After returning from Geneva and London for talks with several producers of Covid-19 vaccines, State Secretariat Minister Pratikno asked Budi to hold discussions with various parties in the health sector.
One of them was an epidemiologist from the University of Indonesia Pandu Riono. Pandu confirmed to Tempo that he had several discussions with Budi either directly or via Budi's staff.
However, Pandu claimed Budi had never mentioned the possibility of occupying the Health Minister position. "He only complained about the poor performance of the Covid-19 Mitigation Task Force and the lack of preparations made by the Health Ministry in targeting a large and fast vaccination coverage," said Pandu two days ago.
Budi Gunadi Sadikin has a long track record in the banking sector. Budi was trusted to serve as President Director of Bank Mandiri from 2013 to March 2016.
Budi was then appointed as Senior Advisor for the SOE Minister from 2016 to 2017 and appointed as President Director of mining holding Inalum. He was later introduced as SOE Deputy Minister.