BONSERNEWS.com – DPR Commission I member Syarief Hasan assesses that the purchase of 12 Mirage 2000-5 fighter jets from Qatar for US$ 800 million or the equivalent of Rp. 12 trillion is a policy full of question marks.
The reason is, this aircraft is a former Qatar Air Force which was purchased from France in 1997 and was grounded 2 years ago and then purchased by the Government of Indonesia.
“The purchase plan is that this aircraft will be in Indonesia or delivery in 2025, so the age of this aircraft used by the Indonesian Air Force is 28 years old. Meanwhile, the Rafale fighter jet is planned to arrive in Indonesia in 2026. That means why can’t wait for 1 year 2026 to arrive new plane?,” said Syarief Hasan, Wednesday, June 21, 2023.
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According to him, maintaining air defense in the country from increasingly dynamic geopolitical threats necessitates a capable defense system. The use of used defense equipment will have an impact on the resilience of the Indonesian Air Force in overseeing all parts of Indonesia.
Moreover, don’t let the cost of maintaining and maintaining aircraft actually suck up Indonesia’s defense budget. Meanwhile, the domestic need for defense equipment in the three dimensions is still very high. This is a matter of priority and long-term defense.
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“President Jokowi in a limited meeting on defense equipment procurement policy on 22 November 2019 warned not to procure defense equipment using technology that is obsolete, out of date, and not in accordance with the pattern of future wars. Regarding this used fighter jet from Qatar, in 2009 the Government of Qatar actually planned to donate it to the Government of Indonesia. However, at that time the SBY government, in this case the Indonesian Ministry of Defense, refused because the maintenance costs were expensive. This is what is surprising, the Ministry of Defense is actually now making purchases,” said this senior politician from the Democratic Party.
The deputy chairman of the MPR is of the view that the cost of defense infrastructure is very high. Therefore, procurement and purchasing plans must be considered very carefully. Don’t let us spend a lot of money, but it turns out that the defense equipment is still inferior and lagging behind compared to neighboring countries.
Finally, the defense equipment becomes ineffective in maintaining territorial sovereignty. In the end, we are still not optimal because of used goods. Operational readiness does not support in dispelling various potential threats to national security.
“It should be evaluated, I asked the Ministry of Defense to refuse the purchase of these used fighter jets from Qatar. This is not only a matter of whether we have additional defense equipment, but whether the defense system is really capable of protecting our air space. If it turns out that it is not optimal, buying a new fighter jet is still a better choice. We have to focus on long-term defense,” he said.
“It is better that Rp. 12 trillion is used to optimize the maintenance of all the fighter jets we have while waiting for 1 year for the arrival of new aircraft,” concluded Syarief. ()