Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Lunch with Indria Samego

Pak Indria Samego, Indonesia's well-known political observer, loves yoghurt.

The first thing he did when he stood up to order some food at Marche Movenpick was to walk to the beverage section asking for yoghurt. He wasn’t lucky though. They restaurant was temporarily ran out of yoghurt.

We met up with Pak Indria yesterday. He will serve as the final judge for political subtopic in this year’s Anugerah Adiwarta Sampoerna. Friendly and humorous was the first impression that crossed our mind as he entered the room. Pak Indria said that he felt honored to become AAS 2007’s final judge, and we talked a bit about last year’s AAS and journalism in Indonesia.

Pak Indria specifically mentioned about high-solidarity amongst Indonesian journalists based on his experience: “For instance, I gave my cellphone number to one journalist, and the next thing I knew, other journalists will have my number as well!” he laughed.

After our lunch arrived, we started to talk about many things, including the controversial businesses’ contribution to the community we once posted in Maverick’s blog. Pak Indria told us that we can’t blame people for being skeptical when controversial businesses are trying to give back to the community. “Philantrophy is needed and it is good for the community,” said Pak Indria. “I think it’s better for them to give back rather than taking the profit for their own good and do nothing for the community.”

The part I like the most was when he talked about the tendency of today’s generation. “They have millions of rupiahs to spend on a concert ticket, but they don’t have that same amount of money to produce something. This nation can’t stop consuming things, but we don’t have the will to actually produce something. We have to change our mentality if we’d like to step ahead.”

Everyone, are you ready for a change? :)

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