Workers to Stage Mass Protest against Small Hike in Minimum Wage until Next Week

1 December 2022 08:53 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaA number of labor union organizations and the Labor Party are set to hold a mass demonstration rejecting the small increase in the provincial minimum wage or UMP Jakarta 2023 which is only 5.6 percent. The workers' rally will be held starting today, December 1, until Wednesday next week, December 7, 2022

Said Iqbal, the president of the Labor Party and the Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions (KSPI), explained that the 5.6% hike at Rp259,944 which will take effect on January 1, 2023, will make workers poorer. During the COVID-19 pandemic, he argued, the minimum salary was not increased at all while the prices of goods soared due to the surge in fuel oil.

As a result, the purchasing power of workers plummeted by up to 30 percent. With the 5.6% hike, he went on, workers' and poor people’s purchasing power is getting worse.

“The salary hike of 5.6 percent is below the inflation rate in 2022. Because the UMP increase is based on year-to-year inflation, September 2021-September 2022, it cannot consider the increase in fuel prices which is decided in October,” Said explained in a virtual press conference on Wednesday, November 30, 2022.

Additionally, the Jakarta UMP hike is smaller than its neighboring regions such as Bogor which determined a 10% increase. Other regions with higher UMP hikes than Jakarta include Subang, Majalengka, and Cirebon.

Thus, Said assessed that Acting Governor of Jakarta Heru Budi Hartono has failed to boost the purchasing power of workers and low-income people and instead, sided with the upper middle class and entrepreneurs.

“Jakarta is the state's capital. How is it possible that the salary hike is only 5.6 percent, lower than current year's inflation and only half of Bogor's recommended salary hike of 10 percent,” Said emphasized.

Heru Budi's policies, according to Said, are far worse than those of the previous governors, especially those related to the minimum wage and several policies for the poor. “The Acting Governor's policy is not in favor of the people.”

As previously reported, Heru Budi acknowledged that workers planned to conduct mass protests against the small increase in the Jakarta UMP. “Yes, that's fine. It's their right,” he said at the Jakarta DPRD Building, Tuesday, November 29, 2022.

He explained that the policy on Jakarta minimum wage was in accordance with the Manpower Ministry’s instruction.

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