Jakarta, 27 October 2023—Marking the 95th anniversary of the "Youth Pledge," (Sumpah Pemuda) one hundred enthusiastic young people all across Indonesia gather at the WALHI Training Center, Caringin, Bogor. They gather for National Consolidation of Young People to Restore Indonesia (KOMPI) which aims to explore the spirit of struggle of their predecessors who initiated the Youth Pledge, while observing the big challenges facing Indonesia today. Today's youth, with the same spirit, are determined to consolidate their strength and face the climate and ecological crisis together.
"The National Consolidation of Young People to Restore Indonesia aims to facilitate young people to formulate their desires for the future of Indonesia. At least their dream is in 2045, which has always been used by the government." Said Hadi Jatmiko from WALHI who is one of the initiators of KOMPI.
In 2022, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has issued severe climate crisis warning. This warning is not without basis, extreme events related to weather and climate have had a serious impact on life on earth. With geographic characteristics that are vulnerable to disasters, Indonesia faces serious challenges ranging from the threat of sinking small islands, food insecurity, to reduced water resources. The groups most affected are indigenous peoples, farmers, fishermen and families with low incomes.
This alarming situation has triggered global anxiety, particularly among the younger generation. This is the main viewpoint reflected in the current consolidation. Young people feel "betrayed" by the government's slow response to the crisis. Human civilization, according to the younger generation, is on the edge of collapse, and the future appears bleak.
Ironically, instead of focusing on overcoming this problem, the Indonesian government has actually made the situation worse by issuing several policies, such as the Job Creation Law which legalizes massive exploitation of natural resources. The legalization of environmental destruction is even followed by several actions that undermined this nation's democratic system.
Responding to the situation, this consolidation is one way to reflect on the fate of intergenerational justice. Young people aged between 16-30 years are those who grew up in the "era of ecological disaster". Ecological disasters continue to occur as a consequence of natural resource management policies that destroy the environment and people's sources of livelihood.
"If this nation wants to achieve justice and prosperity for all of us, there are two emphasizes to start: oppressed people and young people. We are attempting to shape Indonesia in 2045. We cannot expect justice, independence, and truth to be done from other parties, we must seize and shape it.” Said Zenzi Suhadi, Executive Director of WALHI.
On the other hand, there are also children and teenagers who are concerned about their future, which is jeopardized by ecological disasters and the climate crisis. Meanwhile, the government's actions do not indicate that it is serious addressing this problem. This is evident in all of the regulations issued which appear to push the people, including the younger generation, into the abyss of a multi-dimensional crisis.
In the midst of an increasingly deteriorating situation, the government's efforts to overcome the environmental and humanitarian crisis are not always in sync with the voice of the public. The government constantly claims to be acting in the interests of national economic growth without considering the environmental and social costs incurred. Therefore, in the momentum of the Youth Pledge commemoration, WALHI provides full support to young people to unite and consolidate to give birth to a commitment to build the future order that young Indonesians dream of.
Series of the activities
The National Consolidation of Young People to Restore Indonesia is held from 27 to 29 October 2023 at the WALHI Training Center. The following is a series of activities that will be carried out:
1. Youth Vote Poll
2. Panel Discussion
- Climate crisis & ecological disaster
- Expropriation of natural resources & democracy
- Ekonomi Nusantara
- Young people & environmental education movement
3. Culture Movement Session
4. Plenary Formulation of Proposals for Young People to Restore Indonesia
The National Consolidation of Young People to Restore Indonesia addresses not just environmental challenges, but also bridging the generation gap and allowing the younger generation to actively participate in shaping Indonesia's future. The voices of young people are key to shaping a more sustainable future.
Hadi Jatmiko (081310068838)