Anies Baswedan and Sandiaga Uno, respectively the governor and vice governor-elect for Jakarta, are being sworn in this month. On their shoulders rest the hopes of the capital city’s continued progress as a sustainable home for all

It was a historic April for the capital when the Jakarta chapter of the General Elections Commission (KPU) officially declared that Anies Baswedan, the former Minister of Education, and Sandiaga Uno, a notable entrepreneur, won the gubernatorial seat in a tight race against incumbents Basuki Tjahaja Purnama and Djarot Saiful Hidayat.

As the top-ranked leaders of Jakarta, Anies and Sandiaga will now carry the responsibility of ensuring the city’s progress in continuously shaping itself as a sustainable space for its citizens to live and prosper. During their campaigns, Anies and Sandi already promised citizens that they would carry out seven programmes aimed to improve the city and city life. 

The first campaign promise was the 0 per cent downpayment on house purchases, followed by an integrated transportation system with fees set at Rp5,000. They also vowed to shut down certain entertainment spots and push the One Kecamatan One Center for Entrepreneur (OK OCE) programme. The remaining campaign promises were expanding the coverage of Kartu Jakarta Pintar (KJP) Plus and Kartu Jakarta Sehat (KJS) Plus, ceasing reclamation work, and ceasing evictions.

Out of all the campaign promises, the 0 per cent downpayment on house purchases attracted the most attention and discussion among citizens as well as observers. Anies and Sandi thought up the programme as a solution to the lack of permanent housing faced by many middle- and lower-class citizens.

Recently, Sandi stated that people eligible for 0 per cent downpayments would be those who earn between Rp7 million and Rp10 million per month. Moving onwards, the duo needs to clarify the system behind the loans, including outlining the role of real estate developers and financial institutions. If Anies and Sandi are able to draw up a sound mechanism, their programme could provide relief to millions of citizens besides sparking demand for real estate and other related goods and services.

Transportation and commuting have been a major pain point for citizens of Jakarta, infamous for its gridlock that is partly due to inadequate public transport. Anies and Sandi’s integrated transportation system, dubbed OKOTRIP, if successful, will free commuters from a major source of daily stress.

To achieve their goal, the former academician and entrepreneur must find ways to unite the multiple companies and cooperatives, such as the Jakarta Transport Cooperative (Kopaja), that run the public buses, minivans, and trains that traverse the city. Technology will be a critical tool to leverage in creating a seamless transportation system, with singular smart cards or digital wallets enabling transport users to tap and pay on all types of vehicles.

Meanwhile, Anies and Sandi look to spark entrepreneurship especially in the lower rungs of society through the OK OCE programme, which intends to establish 44 economic growth centres in the city. These centres will support entrepreneurship through skill enhancement, permit processing, credit for women, access to markets, and incentives for innovation. As with growing any small and medium industry or startups, bolstering entrepreneurship would require Anies and Sandi to call for the participation of financial institutions that can furnish small loans. The presence of entrepreneurship and training institutes would be game-changing as well, given that they will provide the hard and soft skill training for participants.

This story appears in the October 2017 issue of Indonesia Tatler. For the full story, grab the copy at your nearest newsstands, or subscribe here.


Tags: Cover Story, Sandiaga Uno, October 2017, Anies Baswedan