Photo by Didik Suhartono for Antara.

This year, the Indonesian government has replaced more than 110 local elected leaders for appointed caretaker leaders. By 2024, almost all district and provincial leaders will be appointments from Jakarta. The government says that this is a technocratic fix. The plan is to hold all district, provincial and national elections on the same day, and to fill the gap between the electoral terms of these local leaders running out and the elections planned for 2024, the government has decided to appoint caretaker administrations.

These appointments occupy a strange political space. Most Indonesians don’t know anything about them. And that’s because on one side, they seem highly technocratic. But as these appointments have been made, questions are being asked.

Who are these interim regional leaders? Who decided on their rule? How will they rule? If the caretaker administrations are just a technocratic stop gap why do they feel like Jakarta overreach? In this week’s Talking Indonesia podcast, Dr Jacqui Baker explores these questions and more with Dr Ian Wilson, Senior Lecturer in International Politics and Security Studies, Academic Chair of the Global Security Program and Co-Director of the Indo-Pacific Research Centre at Murdoch University, Western Australia.

In 2022, the Talking Indonesia podcast is co-hosted by Dr Jacqui Baker from Murdoch University, Dr Dave McRae from the Centre for Indonesian Law, Islam and Society at the University of Melbourne, Dr Jemma Purdey from Monash University, and Tito Ambyo from RMIT.

Look out for a new Talking Indonesia podcast every fortnight. Catch up on previous episodes here, subscribe via Apple Podcasts or listen via your favourite podcasting app.

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