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Widodo calls on New Order vigilante group to be bulwark of national unity

Tempo - October 29, 2017

Amirullah, Jakarta – President Joko Widodo or Jokowi says that the Pancasila Youth (Pemuda Pancasila, PP) are a special social organisation (ormas) and he is calling on the group to be the bulwark of the state ideology of Pancasila.

"The Pancasila Youth is a special ormas because its name has the word Pancasila", he said in a press release by Presidential Press bureau chief Bey Machmudin on Sunday October 29.

Widodo said this when presenting his greetings to an event marking the 58th anniversary of the Pancasila Youth at the Sunan Hotel in the Central Java city of Surakarta (Solo) on October 28.

Arriving at around 7.45pm, the president was greeted enthusiastically by Pancasila Youth members. And even before he had sat down on the seats provided, Widodo had shaken hands with almost all of the Pancasila Youth leadership and members that were present.

In his greetings, Widodo said he hoped that the Pancasila Youth can become a guide for Indonesia's young men and women in safeguarding and practicing the state ideology of Pancasila.

"I hope that the Pancasila Youth will always be a bulwark of Pancasila. I repeat, the Pancasila Youth will always be a bulwark of Pancasila, the UUD 1945 [1945 Constitution], the NKRI [Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia] and Bhinneka Tunggal Ika [Unity in Diversity]", he said.

This hope, he said, is in fitting with the name Pancasila Youth which encapsulates the ideology of Pancasila and at the same time the guides and unifiers of the Indonesian nation's pluralism.

This is important bearing in mind that new ideologies are currently emerging that want to replace Pancasila. Moreover these ideologies that are emerging are doing so not through ordinary means so vigilance must always be improved.

Widodo invited the Pancasila Youth to cooperate with the government in creating a generation of Indonesians that have optimism, a spirit of renewal and innovation in building the motherland.

"On the Pancasila Youth's 58th anniversary, let us continue to mutually cooperate with the government, with Indonesia's young men and women to become a generation that is strong, innovative and resilient, to take this nation into Indonesia's golden era", he said.

Also accompanying the president at the event was, among others, State Secretary Pratikno, Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu, Regional Representatives Council (DPD) speaker Oesman Sapta Odang, Special Presidential Staff member Johan Budi and Surakarta Mayor FX Hadi Rudyatmo.

Notes

Pemuda Pancasila (Pancasila Youth) was established by the army in October 1959, ostensibly to uphold the state ideology of Pancasila. During the anti-communist purge in 1965-66 the group took an active part in the slaughter of Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) members and sympathisers. Under the New Order dictatorship of former president Suharto the organisation became an association of notorious thugs and petty criminals who carried out dirty work on behalf of the regime. The organisation still has close ties with various factions of the military and police and has been linked to criminal activities such as racketeering and extortion. In recent years has been involved in a number of violent turf wars with other vigilante groups and attacks on leftist groups and events that it deems to be "pro-communist" or "anti-Pancasila".

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the article was Jokowi Sebut Pemuda Pancasila sebagai Ormas Spesial.]

Source: https://nasional.tempo.co/read/1028794/jokowi-sebut-pemuda-pancasila-sebagai-ormas-spesial.

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