State-owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Erick Thohir has discharged all the ministry’s Echelon I officials in a restructuring effort to improve bureaucratic efficiency in accordance with President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s mission.
“I, along with my two deputies, have met in person with all echelon I officials to discuss the restructuring. This is part of our tour of duty,” Erick said in a statement on Monday. Some of the discharged officials were offered positions at state-owned firms.
“Corporations understand bureaucracy, as shown by [Deputy Ministers] Pak Kartika ['Tiko' Wirjoatmodjo] and Pak Budi Sadikin. Now, the bureaucracy needs to understand corporate issues, which is what we’re hoping to accomplish right now," added Erick, referring to president director posts at state lender Bank Mandiri previously held by Tiko and at state miner Inalum, held by Budi.
The restructuring would entail reducing the number of undersecretaries at the ministry from seven to three, he said. A staff evaluation would soon follow, as streamlining efforts began to pick up pace, Erick added.
“To manage the ministry’s Rp 8.2 trillion (US$583 million) budget, I need solid teamwork with people who are not only intelligent, but also ethical. I will do my best to ensure that those working for the ministry and state firms are committed individuals,” Erick said.
Jokowi highlighted bureaucratic reform in his inauguration speech in October, suggesting initiatives such as reducing the number of civil service echelons from four to two and transforming the economy from one that is dependent on natural resources to one that is competitive in modern manufacturing and services.