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08 May 2020

Hearing Meeting of House of Representatives Commission X and National Library: iPusnas Must Increase Popular Book Collection

Medan Merdeka Selatan, Jakarta — Reduction of the National Library of Indonesia (Perpusnas) budget as big as IDR 202,219,912,000 or 30.9% has a great impact on priority programs that have been formulated previously. This sparked the concern of the House of Representatives Commission X members at the Hearing Meeting (RDP) on Friday (5/8). However, the House of Representatives Commission X asked the National Library to conduct a thorough and efficient priority programs needed by the public.

"The National Library must have a minimum budget of IDR 1 trillion. But up there, they do not yet understand the importance of library and its function as one way to educate the nation. We can tolerate when they cut IDR 100 billion, but why they cut more," complained Sofyan Tan from the PDIP faction.

A similar sentiment was also expressed by Sofyan Tan's colleague in the faction, Andreas Pareira, that the budget was cut to fight the virus but we also had to think about the development aspects for the nation intelligence.

"Many schools do not yet know iPusnas. The National Library can expand its reach. Recommend to parents of students so that the benefits of iPusnas can be felt by all parties. Increase the number of popular books that children and adolescents like so that the queues are not too long, especially during the pandemic," added one member of Commission X, Hetifah

In addition, Hetifah requested strengthening of internet networks and social media-based services. Applied books to be made in tutorial. Librarians are also asked to be more productive using social media, such as YouTube, IG, Facebook and Twitter. Review public figures and politicians from various perspectives and themes.

Responding to a number of inputs submitted, Head of the National Library, Muhammad Syarif Bando, said that the budget cuts indeed hampered a number of priority programs that had been prepared, including building applications and Big Data. "This requires a substantial cost," added Syarif Bando.

In fact, Syarif Bando added that the National Library had signed an MOU to 1,000 university rectors who all wanted digital content to be sent immediately. Meanwhile, regarding the proposed enrichment of popular collection contents that is loved by millennials and teenagers to be included in iPusnas application, they promised to fulfil the plan soon. 

Considering the statement of the Head of National Library, efficiency and effectiveness have indeed become the focus of budget cuts. "Referring to Presidential Decree (Perpres) No. 54 of 2020 concerning Amendment to the State Revenue and Expenditures Budget (APBN) Posture, there are several activities that we are forced to eliminate and reduce, outside of official travel," explained the Head of the National Library of Law and Planning Bureau, Joko Santoso, after following the RDP with the House of Representatives Commission X.

Meanwhile, at the end of the session, the Chairperson of the Session, Agustina Wilujeng, hoped that National Library could become a reference centre and source of knowledge, and National Library programs are made in an online version following the development of time.

Reporter and Photographer: Hartoyo Darmawan

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