Subdivisions of Indonesia
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Since the enactment of Law Number 22 Year 1999 regarding Local Government (the law was revised by Law Number 32 Year 2004), local governments now play a greater role in administering their areas. Foreign policy, defense (including armed forces and national police), system of law, and monetary policy, however, remain the domain of the national government. Since 2005, heads of local government (governors, regents and mayors) have been directly elected by popular election.
A province is headed by a governor. Each province has its own legislative body, called Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat Daerah (literally means "Regional People's Representatives Assembly"). Governors and representative members are elected by popular vote for five-year terms.
Indonesia is divided into 34 provinces. Eight provinces have been created since 2000. Five provinces have special status:
- Aceh (also known as Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam (formerly: Aceh Special Region), has greater role in local government, which includes its own Islamic Sharia law (for Muslim citizens), flag and provincial anthem, local political parties are allowed, and decisions or laws made by the central government which directly affect Aceh's administration must be referred to the local government or legislative body.
- Yogyakarta Special Region. The Sultan of Yogyakarta is de facto governor of Yogyakarta since he is given priority when electing the governor. For centuries, the Sultanate of Yogyakarta has reigned in the region. However, recently the central government proposed a law that required the governor to be popularly elected as in the other provinces, while still giving the sultan significant political power. The proposal is still under debate with objections from the people of Yogyakarta including the local legislative body and the sultan himself.
- Papua (formerly: Irian Jaya), since 2001 local government has a greater role, including use of its own flag and anthem of province, and the governor is required to be of Papuan origins.
- West Papua (formerly: Irian Jaya Barat), has the same status as Papua.
- Jakarta Special Capital Region, is the capital city of Indonesia. The Governor of Jakarta has the power to appoint and dismiss mayors and regent within the Jakarta Special Capital Region. The local government is allowed cooperate with other cities from other countries.
Regency and City
Regency (Indonesian: Kabupaten) and city (Indonesian: Kota), collectively known as "Daerah Tingkat II" is a local level of government beneath the provincial level. However, they enjoy greater decentralization of affairs than the provincial body, such as provision of public schools and public health facilities.
Both regency and city are at the same level, having their own local government and legislative body. The difference between a regency and a city lies in differing demographics, size and economics.
Generally the regency has a larger area than the city, and the city has non-agricultural economic activities. A regency is headed by a regent (Indonesian: Bupati), and a city is headed by a mayor (Indonesian: Walikota). The regent or mayor and the representative council members are elected by popular vote for a term of 5 years.
Regencies and cities are divided into either of the following units, depending on the region:
- Kecamatan (sub-district), headed by a camat. Camats are civil servants, responsible to the regent (in a regency) or to the mayor (in a city). Sub-districts are found in most parts of Indonesia.
- Distrik (district), headed by a kepala distrik (district chief). Districts are only found in the provinces of Papua and West Papua.
Village: Desa and Kelurahan
(Sub-)Districts are divided into desa (village) or kelurahan. Both desa and kelurahan are of a similar division level, but the desa enjoys more power in local matters than the kelurahan. An exception is Aceh, sub-districts are divided into mukim before being subdivided further into gampong.
In Indonesian, as in English, a village (desa) has rural connotations. In the context of administrative divisions, a desa can be defined as a body which has authority over the local people in accordance with acknowledged local traditions of the area. A desa is headed by a "head of desa" (Indonesian: kepala desa), who is elected by popular vote.
Most Indonesian villages use the term "desa", but other terms are used in some regions:
- Gampong in Aceh
- Nagari in West Sumatra
- Dusun in Bungo Regency (Jambi)
- Kampung in some places in Indonesia:
- Pekon in Pringsewu, Tanggamus, and West Lampung regencies (Lampung)
- In Bali, there are two forms of "desa", i.e. desa dinas (service village) and desa adat (cultural village). Desa dinas deals with administrative functions, while desa adat deals with religious and cultural functions.
- Lembang in Toraja and North Toraja regencies (South Sulawesi)
Although desa and kelurahan are part of a district, a kelurahan has less autonomy than a desa. A kelurahan is headed by a Lurah. Lurahs are civil servants, directly responsible to their camat.
The following table lists the number of current provinces, regencies and cities in Indonesia.
|Type (Indonesian)||Type (English)||Head of administration (Indonesian)||Head of administration (English)||Number|
|Kecamatan [in Papua and West Papua: Distrik]||District||Camat [in Papua and West Papua: Kepala Distrik]||Head of District||6,543|
|Desa and Kelurahan||Village||Lurah/Kepala Desa||Head of Village||75,244|
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- In other places, "dusun" is an administrative division form below "desa".
- In other places, "kampung" is equal with "dusun", except in Bungo, Jambi.
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