April 14, 2023
JAKARTA – Cilegon received the lowest score of any of the Indonesian cities studied in the 2022 Tolerant Cities Index Report by the SETARA Institute, ranking 94th, with Depok and Padang just above at 93rd and 92nd, respectively.
The index assessed four criteria: city government regulations, social regulation, government action and socioreligious demographics. It also examined eight indicators within these criteria.
SETARA Institute management board head Ismail Hasani explained how Cilegon scored the lowest of the 94 Indonesian cities assessed.
“The first [reason] is government action. Cilegon’s city government is agreeing with people who have intolerant political aspirations to prohibit people from building places of worship. So from a criteria standpoint, the government action score is zero,” Ismail told reporters at Grand Sahid Jaya in Central Jakarta on Thursday, as quoted by detik.com.
Ismai noted that Cilegon continued to enforce a 1975 regulation banning the construction of churches in the city.
“With this being the city’s guide, it still believes in this discriminatory legal product as a legal basis. That’s two criteria,” he added.
Lastly, SETARA found that Cilegon exhibited particular intolerance in the public sphere.
“The dynamics of civil society under the leadership of a city government that has no awareness of pluralism and diversity will tend to create spaces of social segregation that make society increasingly polarized by religious, ethnic and other group identities,” the 2022 report states.
Cilegon’s score declined from the year before, causing it to fall below Depok, which had the lowest score in 2021. Meanwhile, the three highest scores went to Singkawang, Salatiga and Bekasi, making them the most tolerant cities in Indonesia, according to the study.
First published in 2015, the SETARA Institute’s Tolerant Cities Index Report (IKT) seeks to promote the “best tolerance practices” in Indonesian cities and provide a baseline to measure and manage harmony, tolerance and social inclusion.