NAME: I Mangku Nyoman Tingkat
LIVING IN: Sukawati, Gianyar
How do you think people overseas see Indonesia?
As a land of art and culture.
What are the barriers to development in this country?
The management of the country. The rules of ruling it.
Corruption is constantly in the news. Do you think it’s getting worse?
Yes, it is. Too erase it is really hard. It’s entrenched in the culture and it’s a legacy of the Dutch that we started engaging in. Colonisation was long and it hurt us; it’s made us who we are now.
What real steps can be taken to stamp it out?
Fix the system of government. Everything started from the system.
Some say Indonesia should help mediate in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, because of its large Muslim population, and President Yudhoyono has signalled an interest. What’s your view?
If it helps to resolve the problem, then yes, Indonesia should.
There’s a view that Bali, in many respects, is unlike anywhere else in Indonesia. Why do you think that is?
It’s definitely because of the culture – how we dress, the people, the religion.
One of Bali’s main problems right now is the deadly outbreak of rabies. Stray dogs continue to roam the streets, posing a serious health risk to people. Do you think not enough is being done to counter this crisis, given that 66 people have died?
In my area, the government has made some efforts, and I think that’s enough.
How do you relate to Indonesians from other islands – Java, Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Papua and many more. Is there a common bond between you all?
Unity in diversity is our motto. We are all different but we want to be together in one country.
Indonesia has had six presidents since independence in 1945. Which one stands out the most for you, and why?
Every president wants to do their best, but for me the best was Suharto. His way of ruling made the economy stable. Even though he had a bad reputation, in everything there are two sides: bad and good. The security in his time made a lot of tourist come here.