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Cablegate: Jpip Competition Encourages Good Governance, Expands Into

VZCZCXRO4474
RR RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHJS #0106 3030933
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 300933Z OCT 09
FM AMCONSUL SURABAYA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0488
RUEHJA/AMEMBASSY JAKARTA 0477
INFO RUEHJS/AMCONSUL SURABAYA 0500
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RUEHBY/USDAO CANBERRA ACT AS
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON 0187
RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS

UNCLAS SURABAYA 000106

SIPDIS

DEP FOR EAP/MTS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV ECON EAID ID
SUBJECT: JPIP COMPETITION ENCOURAGES GOOD GOVERNANCE, EXPANDS INTO
OTHER PROVINCES

REF: 08 Surabaya 56 Jawa Pos Awards Innovation in Public Servace Across East Java

1. (U) In 2001, Indonesia began a political transformation from
the centralized system of the Suharto era to a decentralized
system characterized by high levels of local autonomy. During
the intervening eight years, some regency and city governments
have used this new-found authority to improve the level of
services they provide to their residents while others have
failed to meet expectations. The first in a series of cables
about at the effects of decentralization on the local
governments and people of eastern Indonesia, this cable looks at
one of the largest non-governmental boosters of improved local
governance, the Jawa Pos Institute for Pro-Autonomy (JPIP).
Competitions organized by JPIP have both impacted political
races and encouraged the adoption of best practices by local
governments. Subsequent cables will consider specific examples
of successful as well as sub-par governance.

2. (U) Dahlan Iskan, the CEO of the Jawa Pos Group, one of the
largest media conglomerates in Indonesia, is an unabashed
supporter of greater local government autonomy. In an effort to
improve local governance, he established the Jawa Pos Institute
for Pro-Autonomy (JPIP) in 2001, an NGO focused on promoting
good governance at the local level. While under the auspices of
the media group, JPIP does not act as a media entity. Rather,
it focuses its activities on both researching and promoting
good-governance best practices. JPIP's central program is an
annual good-governance competition among all the local
governments in East Java, now in its ninth year (Reftel). In
East Java, incumbents in regencies that scored poorly on JPIP's
survey of government services found their re-election prospects
dim.

3. (U) Based on JPIP's success, the Jawa Pos decided to expand
outside East Java. The group established a second organization
in Makassar, South Sulawesi, in 2008. As one of the largest and
economically important cities in eastern Indonesia, Makassar was
a clear choice for this second institute. The Fajar Institute
for Pro-Autonomy (FIPO) operates under the auspices of the Jawa
Pos Group newspaper in South Sulawesi, the Fajar, and is
independent of JPIP. FIPO completed its first good governance
competition in May 2009. While it is too early to tell if
performing poorly in this competition will correlate with
electoral defeat for the Regents in South Sulawesi, the
competition has already garnered outside attention. The
inaugural event was successful enough to induce the Government
of Canada to provide a grant to FIPO to add Gender Equality to
the list of categories graded in next year's competition.

4. (U) The Jawa Pos Group is establishing a third pro-autonomy
institute in East Kalimantan, due in large part to Dahlan
Iskan's close ties to the province - he attended a year of
University in Samarinda prior to becoming a journalist and
reportedly considers it to be a second home. Dubbed the Jawa
Pos Institute for Pro-Autonomy East Kalimantan (JPIP Kaltim),
this institute will hold a similar competition in that province.
Preparations are underway for its first competition, which is
scheduled to be completed in 2010. While there are clear
reasons for establishing these institutes in South Sulawesi and
East Kalimantan, JPIP told PolOff that there are no current
plans to create further institutes in other provinces.

5. (U) These competitions provide valuable insight into the
workings of local governments in the current environment of
decentralization and local autonomy. In some cases in the East
Java competition, regencies languish at the bottom of the
competition for years, seemingly incapable of improving public
services, while other regencies regularly win various categories
of the competitions. However, in many cases in both East Java
and now in South Sulawesi, the successes of one regency or city
are duplicated by others. For example, Sinjai regency, in South
Sulawesi, received the highest score in the Health Service
category for providing health insurance to the public. Several
regencies from as far away as West Java have sought to copy
Sinjai's health insurance program. Similarly, Surabaya won an
award in the 2006 JPIP competition for its program to ensure
that there was one tree planted in the city for each resident.
This program has since been duplicated, with some local
adaptations, by local governments in Lumajang and Gresik. The
adoption of best practices by other cities and regencies
represents the greatest potential lasting impact of these
competitions.

MCCLELLANDCR

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