Kampung Meeting

VILLAGE MEETING: Facilitator of Gemawan (left), Ismail Karem, Muhammad Zuni Irawan (sitting), and A’la Maududi (right) discussed the program to strengthen the community movement basis at Gemawan’s office, Friday (24/06/2016). Photo: Mahmudi/GEMAWAN.


Pontianak, GEMAWAN.

A facilitator of Gemawan, Ismail Karem, who is usually called Bang Meng and A’la Maududi in a limited discussion, tried to strengthen the basis of the community empowerment movement, one of which was through “Kampung Meeting”.


“Kampung Meeting” is a special activity from Gemawan association which became a forum for discussion among representatives of village residents, village government officials (Pemdes), government officials, stakeholders, and representatives of the Gemawan association itself to discuss current issues.


Various prospects, potentials, challenges, and obstacles in the communities to the citizen roles in general in a sovereign country, have become the main menu served for the subjects of discussion of “Kampung Meeting”.


It has also become a place to socialize the programs from the government and Gemawan association itself to the communities. It even occasionally has become a place to find the best alternative solution to social problems.


Kubu Raya Regency (KKR) as a regional food barn—especially in supporting the needs of the residents of the capital city of West Kalimantan Province, Pontianak City—was considered to have the necessity to strengthen its peasants. One of them was to strengthen community empowerment programs.


“Kampung Meeting, or the easy words are village meetings, is believed to bring positive impacts to the assisted village residents. It is because, not all residents nor groups of residents in the village were brave to directly voice their issues to the village government or higher-level government,” Bang Meng explained in the courtroom of Gemawan office, Friday (24/06/2016).


This situation occurred, he continued, was due to the impact of local politics regarding the succession of village-level leadership, the democratic party happening every five years such as legislative and executive elections, as well as the pressure from outside parties who have great interests in a village such as companies, and so on.


“Moreover, there are many more information access for villagers which are blocked on the village government or higher-level government. Therefore, we see that ‘Kampung Meeting’ is required to be part of the best alternative solution in fulfilling space and active role of citizens to fight for their rights to the government, both individually and collectively,” Bang Men said.


Bang Meng analysed that when there are similar problems on the residents in one area, whether at the village, sub-district, district, or province level which are the same or typically the same, a larger meeting is needed.


“We usually call large gatherings as seminars. The model may be with multiple panels or one direction from parties who have competence on the problems faced by the communities. Fortunately, there are many panels coming from elements of society to the government, giving the space to the panellists to express their opinions. The best alternative solution will then be found which is legalized by the relevant agencies,” Bang Meng said.


Meanwhile, another Gemawan facilitator, A’la Maududi, added the “Kampung Meeting” to be a place for community groups or farmer group’s members (Poktan) in an area to discuss a problem to be solved.


“The Poktan itself is collected by each field extension officer in an area by collecting photocopies of membership evidence. Kampung Meeting is not only an event for Poktan and association of farmers’ groups (Gapoktan), but the facilitators of Kampung Meeting usually also invite the government elements who have sufficient competence on the subject matter to be solved,” A’la explained.


Gemawan itself has a cadre training program recruiting from local villagers, regarding extensive investigations and analysis at the village level. As in the program to make village history to be recorded for the learning of the village next generation, Gemawan provides assistance and training through Kampung Meeting.


“This is where Kampung Meeting becomes a place in strengthening village human resources in all fields. For instance, in supporting the implementation of information disclosure act, through Kampung Meeting as a tool, the community can report anomalies or oddities as well as anomies or the absence of laws which protect the rights of the residents in the areas,” A’la explained. (Gemawan-Mud)


“Kampung Meeting” Strengthens Basis of Movement
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