Strong leadership is needed to resolve conflicts in the ASEAN region.
REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, SLEMAN — Director of the Center for ASEAN Studies, Gadjah Mada University (UGM) Dafri Agussalim assesses that there is currently a leadership crisis in ASEAN. According to him, there is no leader who is influential enough in the ASEAN region.
“In ASEAN there is a leadership crisis. Strong leadership does not exist,” said Dafri at the Journalist School activity, at the UGM Central Building, Tuesday (26/9/2023).
Dafri said, although some leaders are considered undemocratic, a number of figures such as Mahathir, Suharto, Lee Kuan Yew must be recognized as strong leaders. Because according to him strong leadership is needed to resolve existing conflicts in the ASEAN region.
“So if there is a conflict in Myanmar but there is a leader who is highly respected in this region, maybe it will be resolved,” he said.
He also praised Sukarno’s leadership, who was considered to have succeeded in becoming an influential leader in ASEAN. In the future, Indonesia needs a great leader like Soekarno who is able to gather many people.
He also touched on the leadership of the 6th President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) who had quite a lot of attention to ASEAN. Meanwhile, according to him, President Jokowi’s government is also carrying out its leadership well, but it just needs to be improved further in ASEAN.
“The next leader in ASEAN and also in Indonesia should be qualified in the sense of having high diplomatic skills that can convince other people, including Sukarno, that he can muster extraordinary power. We need a leader like that,” said the UGM International Relations lecturer.