The Jakarta Post
President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has dismissed public criticism of the possibility of Indonesia allowing dual citizenship, saying the measure may be needed to support national development.
"We must appreciate people who have achieved great things. We must begin to accustom ourselves to rewarding people who want to work hard. We should not make a fuss about something that should not be argued about,” Jokowi said in Jakarta on Thursday.
“Many people have made a fuss about dual citizenship, especially on social media. They have attacked each other. I am adamant that this is not in line with the way of doing things in Asia,” he went on.
The issue of dual citizenship is in the spotlight after the President honorably dismissed Arcandra Tahar as energy and mineral resources minister on Monday after questions emerged over his citizenship status.
Jokowi reiterated that Indonesia was currently facing tighter global competition, and that the country should therefore make the most of its human resources and not allow them to be exploited by other countries.
“I don’t want to see any Indonesian people with excellent achievements leaving this country because of an unfavorable situation in this country or because they feel they cannot use their achievements to contribute to development here,” he went on.
Citing an example, Jokowi said hundreds of Indonesian people worked in Silicon Valley, a technology and creative industry hub in the US. He further said the government was currently striving to bring back talented members of the Indonesian diaspora.
“Why don’t we let them work in Indonesia? This is what we are now trying to do, encourage them to be willing to work in this country because we really need them,” he said. (ebf)
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