The Jakarta Post
Members of the House of Representatives have suggested a salary cut for lawmakers to provide financial support to those who have been financially affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
"I want all of you, my colleagues, to give at least half of our salary to help those in need," Golkar Party lawmaker Nurul Arifin said during a plenary meeting at the House building in Senayan, Central Jakarta, on Monday.
Secretary of the NasDem faction at the House, Saan Mustopa, echoed the sentiment, saying the House leadership should initiate the idea
“The leaders should initiate a pay cut for House members at least for our salary in April. This is important," Saan said at the plenary.
House Speaker Puan Maharani said the proposed pay cut should be followed up by their respective factions.
Chairman of the NasDem faction at the House, Ahmad Ali, said in a written statement that the House should cut the lawmakers' salaries by 50 percent. Therefore, he encouraged the leaders to take this up with the House Secretariat General.
“This is based on solidarity. The NasDem Party faction proposes a 50 percent pay cut starting in April 2020," Ali said in a written statement.
The NasDem faction also urged the government to reallocate more money in the state budget to handle the coronavirus.
The government previously stated it would reallocate Rp 62.3 trillion (US$3.9 billion) of state spending from the 2020 budget to tackle COVID-19.
Ali added that around 15 percent of the state budget was needed to overcome the coronavirus. Therefore, he called on President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to immediately issue a government regulation in lieu of law (Perppu) to raise Indonesia’s state budget deficit-to-GDP cap from 3 percent to finance the COVID-19 fight.
Raising the deficit cap would allow the state to borrow more money to fund emergency response measures.