Govt committed to supporting pesantren, president says

Govt committed to supporting pesantren, president says

Jombang, NU Online
Indonesian President H Joko Widodo said that the government was committed to supporting pesantren (Islamic boarding schools) as one of the Indonesia's educational institutions. The commitment could be seen from the Pesantren Bill that will be passed into law.

"Earlier this morning I received a report from the minister of religious affairs about the Pesantren Bill to be realized soon. Later this month it will be submitted to the House again. This is proof of the government's attention to the pesantren in this country," Jokowi said while attending at meeting at Pesantren Bahrul Ulum Jombang , East Java, Tuesday (12/18).

According to Jokowi, if the bill is approved, the pesantren will find it easier to get assistance from the central, provincial and district governments. In addition, the educational institutions under the pesantren are also recognized by the government and their students can continue studying to other institutions.

"There are around 28 thousands of pesantren, the most important is that the bill will immediately be ratified, so that the state and regional budgets can help pesantren. And there is an acknowledgment of the pesantren education system constitutionally," Jokowi added.

There were three main issues related to the bill. Firstly, the regulation related to the development of three roles of pesantren. The three roles include educational institutions, religious preaching institutions or da'wah, and community empowerment institutions.

"Secondly, the regulation regarding the establishment of pesantren which is flexible and unrestricted as a merely formal legal matter, because there are more than 28 thousand pesantren which are mostly in the form of salafiyah or traditional," he said.

The last point of the bill is the allocation of pesantren funds. The central and regional governments are obliged to allocate funding in the implementation of pesantren and other religious educations.

"The Muslim scholars and santri have a huge contribution in fighting for and maintaining this independence, so that we can be like today because of the struggle of our predecessors," he concluded. (Syarif Abdurrahman / Masdar)

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