TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Although the parliamentary seats in Senayan are controlled by the Red and White Coalition, president and vice president-elect, Joko Widodo-Jusuf Kalla remain optimistic that they can still make changes to the 2015 State Budget.
"We are confident that this new government has a strong mandate," Hasto Kristiyanto, Jokowi-Kalla transition team deputy, said after a House of Representatives (DPR) meeting yesterday morning. "If our programs is in unison with the people, why worry?"
According Hasto, Jokowi-Kalla government still can obtain fiscal space by retrenching the budget posts in ministries and state institutions. Fiscal space can also be obtained by pushing for higher income from tax and non-tax state revenues.
Latif Adam, an economist from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), said the new government has a great opportunity to make changes in the 2015 state budget since the Constitutional Court scrapped the DPR's Budget Board's authority.
Latif said Jokowi has an advantage in communicating, both with the public and with members of the Legislative Council of Jakarta. "That skill should be duplicated and improved, and used in negotiating with members of the Red and White Coalition," he said.
Latif also suggested Jokowi to elaborate his programs to the public, especially on the programs' costs, implementation, and benefits.
GANGSAR PARIKESIT | MARIA YUNIAR