New Bali governor Wayan Koster inaugurated

A picture of newly inaugurated Bali governor Wayan Koster and his deputy, Tjok Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati. Photo: Instagram/@kosteraceofficial
A picture of newly inaugurated Bali governor Wayan Koster and his deputy, Tjok Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati. Photo: Instagram/@kosteraceofficial

There has officially been a change in power now that Bali’s new governor, Wayan Koster, and his deputy, Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati aka ‘Cok Ace’ were sworn in by Indonesian President Joko Widodo this morning.

The Koster-Ace duo were inaugurated along with eight other Indonesian province governors at the State Palace in Jakarta.

The inauguration comes ahead of schedule. It was originally slated for Sept. 17, but Jokowi decided to expedite it, with the announcement for the change in plans only abruptly coming out on Monday.

“I thank the people of Bali for their support. We hope that the cooperation will continue and we will facilitate the space for it,” Koster said after being sworn in, as quoted by Bali Post.

Running on the PDIP ticket–the same party as the president–Koster and Ace defeated Golkar party running rival Rai Mantra and his ticket-mate Ketut Sudikerta during the provincial election this past June.

Koster takes the place of two-term Bali governor, Made Mangku Pastika, who had held the office for 10 years (two consecutive terms).

Like any freshly elected official, the governor emphasized that there will be many things his administration will work to make better, including “improvements in transportation and infrastructure.”

Koster said his vision for his five-year term can be broken down into three main themes. First, balancing humans and nature, along with Balinese culture (can’t get much more Balinese than that, eh?). Second, meeting the needs, hopes, and aspirations of the Balinese in various aspects of life (yeah, not vague at all). And third, being sufficiently ready to anticipate the emergence of new problems and challenges facing Bali that will impact future generations.

The governor went on to talk about his formulated approach of “1 island, 1 pattern, and 1 familiar governance.”

Priority areas for development are broken down into five main categories says Koster: food, clothing, and shelter, health & education, social security and employment, religion, customs, traditions, arts & culture, and the biggie, tourism.

One of his first orders of business as governor will be putting IDR258 billion (US$17.3 million) into building shortcuts on the Mengwitani-Singaraja route in 2019.

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