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Jakarta Post

Jokowi orders Risma to speed up aid disbursement

  • Marchio Irfan Gorbiano

    The Jakarta Post

PREMIUM
Jakarta   /   Fri, January 1, 2021   /  05:22 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Newly inaugurated Social Affairs Minister Tri “Risma” Rismaharini (center) waves while Coordinating Human Development and Culture Minister Muhadjir Effendy (left) looks on during a handover ceremony at the Social Affairs Ministry in Jakarta on Wednesday. Risma, known for her punctiliousness, has replaced Juliari Batubara, who was arrested in a corruption case related to COVID-19 social aid. (JP/Dhoni Setiawan)

Newly installed Social Affairs Minister Tri "Risma" Rismaharini, the popular former Surabaya mayor, has the major task of restoring the credibility of a ministry that was recently mired with corruption. President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has ordered Risma to oversee the distribution of the government’s social aid programs and he wanted her to do it fast — as soon as the first week of January. Both Risma and Jokowi are politicians with the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), the same party to which graft suspect former social affairs minister Juliari Batubara belonged. Juliari stands accused of embezzling social aid funds during the pandemic. In a Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, Jokowi emphasized that the speedy disbursement of aid was vital to maintain people’s purchasing power amid the virus-induced economic slowdown. &ldqu...