Banyuwangi /Indonesia. Regional heads (Bupatis) fear a return of socialist ideologies to return to Indonesia said a NU head on the sidelines in meetings held in Banyuwangi.
The confirmation of M Mas’ud Said as Chairman of the East Java ISNU PW after attending the inauguration of the ISNU Banyuwangi Branch Management (PC) on Monday (9/3) covered the vision and new mission of NU implementing its policies in each district and city.
“The vision for East Java is to build a strong ISNU, a dignified Nahdlatul Ulama towards propensity”, the former special staff of the President of Indonesia said.
“But many are fearful of the rise of old ideologies which have no place in Indonesia today”, a participant in the meetings said. “Radicalism, socialism or Marxism are against Pancasila”.
He added, “regardless of how you package the agenda, and how popular you try to present this failure. We (NU) will stand ready to defend Indonesia against communism or jihadists”.
“The Marxist ideology does not belief in God or Indonesia, and was a failure.”, a speaker of the young NU activist said. “We must stand guard against these false gods. I am sure the political leaders in Pak Joko’s government will protect us.”, he said referring to the administration of President Joko Widodo.
“Good education, tough laws and enforcement will prevent a Marxist comeback”, he added. “we have plenty ways to make fight them”.
The Singaporean Yusof Ishak Institutes echoes the concerns. A majority of regional heads (Bupati’s) reflect the conservative attitudes surfacing in Indonesia. Prior to the presidential elections the regional heads considered a return and rise of the PKI as a threat to the unity of Indonesia.
This was rejected by the many activists and reflects the attitudes mainly aligned along party lines. “But”, so one activist said, “we are a political force. We bid our time and wait.” Many activists are embedded in the environmental groups, people’s action committees, and people’s fronts.
The history of the Peoples Democratic Party (PRD) wrote: “Friends outside said they would continue to fight, even in a clandestine way. The method of resistance was through the distribution of leaflets and Liberation (PRD publications), entering the PDI Pro Mega mass base, and organizing students and workers.”
“We fight for people’s rights, against exploitation by the rich conglomerates who exploited our lands and people.”, said a member of AMAN who like many activists embedded in non-sensitive civil society groups.
CNN Indonesia quoted in 2019 Agus Jabo Priyono, the chair of the PRD added that the PRD still has a structure up to the regions. Currently the party has a management structure in 31 provinces and almost all cities / regencies in Indonesia.
“Only in West Sumatra, West Kalimantan and Central Kalimantan have no PRD management,” Jabo said. “We have about 10,000 cadres in all provinces”.
Experts think the number could reach a million member mark. “The PRD and its affiliated groups operate with a subversive character. Hence the exact number is unclear. We estimate between 400,000 to a million members of the different factions form the nucleus of the new left.”
“The president has missed the opportunity to support the people’s aspiration and sided with the corrupters”, he said, “The people could rise again. Look at last years riots in Jakarta.”