Dear, Mr. President
    Category: Column By : Andrew Tani Read : 985 Date : Thursday, July 10, 2014 - 05:27:58

    Congratulations, Mr. President!

    The democratic process has been served and you are now the leader of a great nation.

    On this victorious moment, I believe that it is auspicious to share with you and your running mate the farewell address of Samuel, the prophet who anointed Saul, Israel’s first king. To wit, “I have done as you asked and given you a king. Your king is now your leader. I stand here before you—an old, gray-haired man—and my sons serve you. I have served as your leader from the time I was a boy to this very day. Now testify against me in the presence of the lord and before his anointed one. Whose ox or donkey have I stolen? Have I ever cheated any of you? Have I ever oppressed you? Have I ever taken a bribe and perverted justice? Tell me and I will make right whatever I have done wrong.” “No,” they replied, “you have never cheated or oppressed us, and you have never taken even a single bribe.” “The lord and his anointed one are my witnesses today,” Samuel declared, “that my hands are clean.” “Yes, he is a witness,” they replied. (1 Samuel 12:1-5)

    Mr. President, you must make it your personal goal to be in a position to stand before the Indonesian people five years from now and ask the same questions that Samuel asked his constituents at the end of his reign. This could very well be your most difficult personal goal to achieve. For integrity is a personal matter strictly between Your Excellency and the Almighty God. 

    The vast powers of the office are at your disposal. Those powers are there to enable you to govern wisely, to promote peace, to uphold justice and to nurture prosperity for your people. But those same powers will bring mighty temptations. You must constantly remember your solemn vow of service with integrity, and not succumb to any temptation to misuse or abuse them.

    There are many who contributed to your success at the polls. Those who worked day and night for many months will expect you to remember their selfless dedication. Those who made major contributions to the election campaign will soon come knocking at your door to discuss the means, appropriate or otherwise, to recover their investment. And there will be family members who feel entitled to share the benefits of your indulgence.

    Mr. President, please remember to persevere with your vow of service with integrity. All of us must help you perform your duties in a way that preserves the reputation for which the majority of the electorate elected you.

    I respectfully recommend that Your Excellency place an object on your desk to constantly remind you of, first, your solemn vow of service with integrity, and second, the end of your term, to humble you. The people will be there waiting to answer you when you ask the questions of Samuel. We pray that the answer then will be: “No.”


    Godspeed, Your Excellency.

    Yours sincerely…