Thursday, August 2, 2007
Civil Servant (PNS) Booming & Collective Corruption
In many democratic countries, civil servant or PNS (pegawai negeri sipil) never been a booming "industry". Rather, it's the second choice for the young potential & dynamic citizens, even in India. Not in Indonesia. Here, the demand to be a PNS has always been beyond the existing supply. So, for the corrupts Indonesian officials (who are not, anyway?) who got direct or indirect authority to select the new breed of corrupt 'potentials', any PNS recruitment day is a harvest season. Time to buy a new luxury car.
For PNS in relatively low level (high school teacher), you need to pay at least Rs 20 million ($2,000), so some of my PNS friends told me their own experience. Mostly through loan. Therefore, corruption practices and corrupt mindset are actually born the time you apply to be a PNS. When your monthly salary are just around $100, how you pay the debt back with your hand still clean? Just a case in point, see special report from Jakarta Post here.
Why PNS still booming now even after Suharto era is over? (1) 32 years economic repression during Suharto era still has its left-over: many young indonesian still got addicted with the dictum of feudalistic attitude: earn much, work less. (2) Uneducated and unfiltered pop-culture influence among the indonesian youth make them want like crazy to live like the celebrities without ever need to work hard (3)The expensive higher-educational cost as a result of retracted subsidy on education make it almost impossible for the poor to further their education and fullfil their dreams.
Indonesia certainly has long way to go towards prosperity for all. Democratic system we're enjoying now to me is a good beginning to start with.