The Jakarta Post
Acting governor Basuki 'Ahok' Tjahaja Purnama is angry with the lack of discipline shown by the city's residents, which he says is leading to continuous violations of the law.
During the opening of Jakarta Museum Day Festival in Taman Fatahillah, Old Town, West Jakarta, on Saturday, Ahok spoke of his annoyance and frustration with the behavior of Jakartans, who he said found it difficult to comply with basic rules and general ethics.
'In Jakarta, people like to do what they want ' from high officials to common people. This is outrageous,' he said as quoted by kompas.com.
He was referring to residents who littered the streets and rivers, residents who parked vehicles in forbidden spaces and agency heads who did not work to their job descriptions. Ahok said he would take firm action against those who broke the rules.
'I'm purposely bringing this issue to the fore to wake you up. I'm angry. I want to send a message to those who disrespect the rules, that they do so, then they will go head-to-head with me,' he said.
Ahok's leadership style, which includes angry remarks and the reprimanding of various officials, has drawn a mixed reaction from the public and his subordinates.
Transportation Agency head M. Akbar, for example, said he took Ahok's remarks in a positive way as they encouraged him to do better.
'He [Ahok] is disappointed because many residents are not disciplined, but to me, this is a show of support. Pak Ahok is showing he has a great determination [to set things right] by saying so,' he told The Jakarta Post over the phone on Sunday.
He said parking offences were continuing as a number of his officials could not deal with the large areas in which they worked and numerous people who broke parking regulations.
'Our law enforcement is not yet effective as we are still relying on manpower. We need to use camera technology to capture traffic irregularities, which will then allow us to fine motorists electronically. This is a challenge for us, but I'm optimistic we can do it,' he said.
Suhanto, head of Kebagusan subdistrict in South Jakarta, said civil servants generally tried to accommodate the approach of their leader.
'As a subordinate, we have to adapt to the style of our leader. We don't want any complains from him as we carry out the implementation of policies,' he told the Post.
Suhanto said although he had not received any complaints from both non-active Governor Joko 'Jokowi' Widodo and Ahok, he had quickly learned about their characters.
'Pak Jokowi does not get angry, but he will replace officials who do not follow orders on more than one occasion,' he said.
Ma'mun, the head of Kebon Bawang subdistrict in North Jakarta, said he liked Ahok's style, saying that Jakarta was an ethnic melting pot that needed a firm leadership style.
'In my area, people are very stubborn, so we need to deal with them strictly. For example, I reprimanded people who threw trash into the river. However, when I stepped back, they littered again,' he said.
He said bureaucrats were often slaves to routines, which was why he supported Jokowi and Ahok's emphasis on innovation.
Fitria Chapman, a resident of Kelapa Gading in North Jakarta, said she liked to watch Ahok getting angry on YouTube and on TV.
'I agree with Ahok's opinions. Many residents still litter and park their vehicles wherever they want. In Kelapa Gading, such problems are still common,' she told the Post. 'People lack discipline, so they need his leadership style.'
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