Hundreds March on State Palace for Social Security

Hundreds of women marched from the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle to the State Palace on Sunday to call for the government to implement the National Social Security System.

The demonstrators also called on the government to finish deliberations with the House of Representatives over the Social Security Organizing Bill (BPJS), which will merge four state-owned insurers to manage the system.

Rieke Dyah Pitaloka, a member of the House special committee deliberating the BPJS who led the rally from her wheelchair, said the government had violated the Constitution by failing to enact the much-discussed social security system, known as SJSN. 

“This is against the Constitution,” she said on Sunday. “We also hope that the BPJS bill could be passed soon so that the SJSN law could be implemented. It has not been implemented for various reasons, [which is] against the Constitution and the government should step down.”

The BPJS, which some legislators are rushing to pass before the House goes into recess next week, is needed so that the provisions SJSN can be implemented.

The bill aims to merge four state firms already handling social security services. They are social security provider Jamsostek, civil service pension fund Taspen, military pension fund Asabri and health insurer Askes.

Rieke accused President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s government using the recent cabinet reshuffle to delay further action on the BPJS.

She said that the demonstrators were marching in the hope that “there will be no more Indonesian people being rejected by the hospitals.”