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DRY SPELLS SPREAD TO WIDER INDONESIA AREAS, AFFECT FARMING

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The extreme dry season has impacted 102,746 hectares (ha) of agricultural area and ruined 9,358 ha.

Greatindonesia.co.id, Jakarta – Earlier this year, the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) reminded the regional authorities to step up their vigilance over possible forest fires and droughts as this year’s dry season was forecast to be drier than that of the previous year.

The extreme dry season has affected several areas since May and is expected to last until September, with the condition likely to peak in August. In the beginning, dry spells were reported mostly on Java Island. Currently, drought has cast a pall over 100 districts and cities in the Aceh, West Java, Central Java, Yogyakarta, East Java, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB), and East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) provinces, the Indonesian Agriculture Ministry’s data stated.

“Most parts of Java, Bali, and Nusa Tenggara have not received rains for over 30 days. Drought has affected some 100 districts and cities,” Sarwo Edhy, director general for agriculture infrastructure and facilities at the Agriculture Ministry, revealed on July 8, 2019, following a coordinating meeting to discuss mitigation efforts.

The extreme dry season has impacted 102,746 hectares (ha) of agricultural area and ruined 9,358 ha. East Java is the worst hit, with 34,006 ha of rice fields having dried up, and 5,069 hectares spoilt; followed by 32,809 ha in Central Java going bone dry and 1,893 ha spoilt; and 25,416 hectares going dry and 624 hectares ruined in West Java. Yogyakarta has been ailing from the impact of the drought, with 6,139 ha going dry and 1,757 ha spoilt; 3,464 ha in Banten; 857 ha in NTB; and 55 ha in NTT, with 15 ha ruined.

Sumardjo Gatot Irianto, the ministry’s director general for crops, affirmed that the ministry will accrue data on farmers covered under insurance, and the government will distribute seeds to farmers not having insurance cover.

He stressed the need to build more water pumps and wells; restore the irrigation system; and optimize the utilization of water from nearby rivers, lakes, and dams to cope with the impact of droughts. The agriculture ministry will also intensify the planting of crops on dry land. During such a dry season, it is time to plant in productive swamp areas, he suggested.

The capital city, Jakarta, has also been advised to be prepared for droughts. Rawa Badak and Rorotan in North Jakarta have gone for 30-61 days without rains.

In fact, in May and June 2019, some areas had experienced a shortage of water, according to the Head of Climate Information Analysis of BMKG, Adi Ripaldi, in Jakarta, on July 4. The people of Jakarta have been urged to use water wisely for every need, including irrigation and watering their plants.

In Karawang, West Java, nearly 23 thousand residents in 14 villages have been running short of clean water due to this year’s drought.

To address this scarcity, the regional government-owned drinking water company, Tirta Tarum, has filled water tankers to distribute clean water to the villages. Similarly, the local environment and sanitation office will build water reservoirs to anticipate droughts in the Tegalwaru sub-district.

Meanwhile, the Kupang Climatology Station has hinted at the possibility of six out of 22 regions in East Nusa Tenggara Province potentially reeling from a drought this year.

Head of the Kupang Climatology Station, Apolinaris Geru, remarked that the six regions were the districts of Sikka, Lembata, Sumba Timur, Rote Ndao, and Belu, as well as the Kupang municipality.

In general, East Nusa Tenggara fell in the category of medium (11-20 days) to very long (31-60 days) for the number of days without rain, he explained. However, the six regions in East Nusa Tenggara fall in the extreme category (>60 days) for the number of days without rain, he pointed out. Hence, he affirmed that the regions had the potential to experience meteorological droughts this year.

“Last year, precipitation during the dry season was less than 20 millimeters a month, and this year, it can go lower,” Adi Ripalsi, head of the agency’s climate information analysis sub-unit, noted recently.

This year’s drought also affected 3,150 families in 12 villages in Central Java’s Banyumas District.

In addition, a total of 17 villages in seven sub-districts in Cilacap, Central Java, have been reeling under the impact of droughts since June.

“Droughts affected a total of 21,660 residents, grouped in 7,123 families, in the 17 villages,” Tri Komara Sidhy, head of the Cilacap disaster mitigation office, stated.

The Cilacap district administration has allocated 110 tankers of clean water this year, which are far from adequate, as 65 villages in 15 sub-districts in Cilacap are prone to droughts, Sidhy noted. (ant)

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INTERNATIONAL

INDONESIAN UNIVERSITIES CAN COOPERATE WITH INDIA, GERMANY

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The cooperation with Japanese universities is considered to have potential and be advantageous for Indonesia because the field of engineering in Japan is very advanced.

Greatindonesia.co.id, Jakarta – The Higher Education Service Institution (LLDIKTI) for Jakarta is initiating international cooperation with several universities abroad including those in India, Japan and Germany. “Since 2018, LLDIKTI Region III (for Jakarta area) has initiated international cooperation, especially with Indian, Japanese and German universities because they excel in certain aspects,” said Head of LLDIKTI Region III, Dr. Illah Sailah at a discussion with journalists here Monday (8/7/2019).

Research activities at Indian universities were very extensive with a large number of scientific books and publications produced by lecturers, Illah explained.

“In addition, Indian universities have a system that is similar to Indonesia, so we can share that with each other,” she added.

The cooperation with Japanese universities is considered to have potential and be advantageous for Indonesia because the field of engineering in Japan is very advanced.

“The engineering field in Japan is very strong. In addition, they have also implemented an education system that does not recognize any ranking system. And they maintain this system as part of their identity,” Illah said.

Meanwhile, cooperation with German universities, according to her, continues to be sought to increase and expand because the world of higher education in the western European country is very concerned about the labor market in accordance with its industrial needs.

Uzbekistan was also the target of international cooperation because as a country with a much smaller population (33 million people) than that of Indonesia, it has many universities, and is very eager to build cooperation with their partners in Indonesia, Illah further explained.

“Many good quality universities in Uzbekistan want to work with us. This international cooperation provides a great value for university accreditation,” she said, adding that this kind of cooperation could be in the form of dual degree and joint research for students and lecturers.

Now, it is a matter of pride for a higher education institution when it is can accept foreign students and send lecturers to teach at universities abroad, she stressed.

At present, there are 316 colleges in the LLDIKTI III working area. Of these, 133 higher education institutions have received institutional accreditation, consisting of 12 with accreditation A, 65 with accreditation B, and 56 with accreditation C.

Meanwhile, of the 1,808 study programs, 64 percent or 1,157 won accreditation B. (bpr)

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NATIONAL

PRABOWO TO CONTINUE STRUGGLE FOR INDONESIAN PROSPERITY

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Presidential candidates pair Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno deliver a press statement related to the Constitutional Court (MK)'s decision on electoral dispute trial in Jakarta, on Thursday (27/6/2019).

Greatindonesia.co.id, Jakarta – Presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto would continue to help creating prosperity for all Indonesian people, following the decision of the Constitutional Court (MK) which rejected all claims related to the electoral dispute.

Realizing a just and prosperous Indonesia has been a campaign jargon of Prabowo and his running mate, Sandiaga Uno, which also become the name of his coalition, consisted of the Great Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra), the Democratic Party (Demokrat), the Islamist parties Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) and National Mandate Party (PAN), along with first-time party Berkarya.

During his presidential campaign, Prabowo declared his vision to bring prosperity for all Indonesians by providing affordable prices of daily needs, jobs, and to build self-sufficiency in food, energy and water.

“Those are our ideals and our struggle. We are sure that we will not stop to fight for those ideals. We can (continue) fight in the legislative (DPR) and many other forums,” Prabowo pointed out in his private residence on Jl. Kertanegara in South Jakarta, on Thursday (27/6/2019) evening.

With his running mate Sandiaga Uno stood by his side, Prabowo asked all his supporters to look at the future with enthusiasm and optimism.

Prabowo called on all his supporters to remain strong, calm, and full of noble ideals, and to continue to maintain a framework of peace, non-violence, and loyalty to the 1945 Constitution.

“We must always think of greater interests, (which is) the integrity of the nation and state,” he noted.

In his speech Prabowo also expressed respect for the decision of the MK, although later he said he would consult with his legal team to discuss other possible legal steps regarding the election results.

The Prabowo-Sandi pair had filed a petition to the MK on May 23, 2019, on the recent presidential election result after the General Elections Commission (KPU) announced the final result of vote counting on May 21, 2019.

The final tally declared by the KPU at around 1:28 a.m. local time on May 21 indicated the Jokowi-Amin pair had secured 85 million votes, or 55.5 percent of the national vote, than the contenders Prabowo-Sandi’s 68 million votes, or 44.5 percent.

The Jokowi-Amin pair had declared victory following the KPU’s announcement of the final tally, while the Prabowo-Sandi pair rejected the KPU’s official tabulation result and challenged it by filing an official lawsuit to the MK. (ant)

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TNI TO INCREASE PARTICIPATION OF FEMALE PEACEKEEPERS

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TNI has deployed around 2,850 personnel as part of a contingent of UN peacekeepers from Indonesia.

Greatindonesia.co.id, Jakarta – The Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI) will increase the participation of female peacekeepers in various United Nations peacekeeping missions from four to seven percent, General Staff Chief Lieutenant General TNI Joni Supriyanto said. “We highly expect that our female peacekeepers will be at strategic positions in the United Nations. We are currently trying to increase the participation of our female peacekeepers from four to seven percent,” Lt. General Supriyanto stated in Jakarta Wednesday (26/6/2019).

Joni made this statement during a press conference at an International Conference under the theme “Preparing the Modern Armed Forces for Operation Maintenance of Peace in the 21st Century”.

The conference was held in collaboration between TNI, the Foreign Ministry, and International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), and attended by representatives from 28 countries and two International organizations.

The participants will share their perspectives and experience on several crucial issues related to the UN peacekeeping mission, including the protection of civilians in the war and armed conflict and increasing the role of women in peace missions.

TNI continues to enhance the role of female personnel in peacekeeping missions, especially as agents to approach the locals in the areas of war and conflict and to build a reconciliation process during conflict, Joni remarked.

“The participation of female personnel was intended to get sympathy easily from the local people. Women are easier to accept with the aspirations of local people so that it is easier to reduce the increase of conflict,” he noted.

TNI has deployed around 2,850 personnel as part of a contingent of UN peacekeepers from Indonesia, Joni revealed.

In addition, based on the records of the Foreign Ministry on March 31, 2019, Indonesia has sent 3,080 personnel including 106 female personnel, who are divided into eight UN peacekeeping missions. (jtr)

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