Friday, September 22, 2006

Village heads rally for better pay

National News - September 19, 2006
The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

Hundreds of village heads from across the country took to the streets in Jakarta on Monday, demanding what they called an improvement in their living standards.

The village heads rallied in front of the Home Ministry to demand that the government increase their salaries, which according to them, were still below the regional minimum wages.

"How can a village head be paid Rp 100,000 per month?" said Sudir Santoso, who chairs the association of village heads.

In the protest, the village heads also urged the government to revoke a policy that barred them from direct involvement in political parties.

The village heads also bemoaned government inconsistencies in determining their tenure. A 2004 law states that the term for village heads is six years, but a government regulation issued in 2005 stipulates that the term expires after five years.

Earlier this year, hundreds of village heads also thronged the capital to voice similar demands. -- JP


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