Islands in focus: Solo earmarks Rp 6.5b for vehicle purchases

The Jakarta Post | Archipelago | Mon, January 14 2013, 10:42 AM

Paper Edition | Page: 5

SURAKARTA: A budget of Rp 6.5 billion (US$675,000) has been allocated by the Surakarta city administration to purchase new official vehicles, comprising 203 motorcycles and 12 cars.

The number of vehicles is relatively small compared to the 334 vehicles written off by the administration this year, which consisted of 290 motorcycles, 31 cars and 13 trucks.

The writing off of these assets was considered necessary to keep the administration’s operational expenses to between Rp 2.5 billion and Rp 2.9 billion this year. “With the new policy, some officials will get official cars while others might not,” city secretary Budi Suharto said.

He said the administration would also rent 10 cars for official operational purposes. “Whoever needs cars for operational purposes can use rented cars,” he added.

Responding to the policy, activist Alif Basuki of the Center for Regional Information and Studies (PATTIRO) said that the decrease in the number of vehicles purchased would do no good if the vehicles, including rented ones, were only used by respective officials to move around here and there.

“If the cars are just used for that purpose, then I think what the administration has already is enough,” said Alif, adding that such purchases should be based on real needs in the field and not only on particular official posts.