Parliamentary Oversight in Indonesia: options for future engagement | May 2013 | Jakarta
As part of CDI’s continuing interest in supporting the emergence of the Indonesian Parliament’s capacity to oversee the financial operations of government agencies, CDI’s Jakarta-based staff, Associate Paul Rowland and Research Officer Grace Hutasoit, recently completed a round of consultations with senior figures from the Parliament’s public accounts committee (the Badan Akuntabilitas Keuangan Negara or BAKN).
The consultations focussed on the challenges facing BAKN as it seeks to establish its role in the Parliament, recent assistance provided to BAKN by development partners and opportunities for future capacity building support. Mr Rowland and Ms Hutasoit met with staff and members of BAKN and with various development partners, including:
- BAKN Chair Ibu Sumarjati Arjoso
- BAKN member Ibu Eva Sundari, a second term member of parliament who has been particularly active to seeking to establish the committee’s approach and profile
- all expert staff members from BAKN
- John Johson and Alvin Lee from the USAID-funded ProRep program, one element of which has been working with BAKN
- Paul Nicoll, an officer from the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) who is currently attached to the Indonesian Supreme Audit Agency (BPK)
It is clear from these consultations that support previously provided (by CDI, ProRep and ANAO) is highly valued and is gradually enhancing oversight confidence and capacity amongst staff and some members. It is clear also that continuing and targeted assistance would be welcomed by all parties. Mr Rowland and Ms Hutasoit have prepared a report which proposes a program based on four elements:
- Deepening BAKN findings on a narrower range of issues: to develop criteria to guide its assessment of which BPK audit findings warrant parliamentary attention – ensuring that “public value” is considered and that deeper attention is given to fewer issues.
- Broadening BAKN’s information sources: to gather information from a broader range of informants through public hearings, site visits and encouraging staff relationships with external groups.
- Enhancing BAKN’s communication to other bodies in the DPR: providing current, concise and timely information to commissions, fraksi, bodies such as the budget committees and individual members
- Encouraging BAKN to become a source of advice to and the formal counterpart to BPK within the DPR.
The proposals in the report will be considered as we develop our future work plans.
Click on the links below to access the full report on these most recent BAKN consultations, and for more detail on CDI’s previous support for BAKN: