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President urged formulation of national culture strategy

President Joko Widodo urged that a national culture strategy covering all sectors in the country be formulated.

"He has asked for immediate formulation of a cultural strategy since the matter is currently governed by the Ministry of Education and Culture," Education and Culture Minister Muhadjir Effendy said at the State Palace grounds in Jakarta on Wednesday.

He further explained that his office has been assigned to prepare such a strategy.

"Ideally, culture covers all sectors. Indonesias national culture is a massive umbrella encompassing a lot, leading to Tri Sakti," he remarked.

He also mentioned that there is a concept of sovereign culture that is political, economically independent and tempered.

President Jokowi held a meeting with a number of artists and humanists on Tuesday to discuss formulation of a national cultural strategy.

"He received some advice and has decided to assign the task to the Education and Culture Ministry," the minister added.

When asked whether the strategy will be implemented as part of the educational curriculum, the minister said it is merely a small part of the scheme.

"In the character strengthening program, which was previously debated as part of the full day school issue, the curriculum will include curricular activities related to culture, arts, sports, etiquette and ethics," he revealed.

He also admitted that the President had summoned him to report the progress in case of programs assigned by the President to the ministry and the Creative Economic Board.

"The President asked about the progress thus far, as well as the implementation of the character building program, something that has to do with culture," he stated.

About the issue of cuts in teachers' benefits, the minister affirmed that no such thing will happen.

"There will be no cuts. Only excess budget usage is being checked," he confirmed, adding that in his ministry, there is no ineffective budget usage.

"There is no ineffective budget usage. What happened was that surplus funds from a few years back were only reported last year. There is no aberration and money is not going anywhere. It will be allocated during the next round of budgeting," Minister Effendy concluded.

Source: Antara News

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