Jakarta. “Many claimed that Yusril is a young Natsir (the influential Muslim ideologist who led the Islamist Masyumi Party before its banning by Indonesia’s first president Sukarno –red), but to me he has his own original ideas,” said Vice President Jusuf Kalla in his remarks during a ceremony celebrating former State Secretary Yusril Ihza Mahendra’s 60th anniversary which coincided with the launching of Yusril’s encyclopedia of ideas, held tonight (Feb 6) at Bidakara Hotel, Jakarta.

Yusril, he continued, is a complete persona like an encyclopedia as he has many expertise.

Yusril, Mr Kalla added is a renowned expert on state administrative law, who played a key role at the very beginning of the reform era.

With his expertise, he said, the shift of power from President Soeharto to Habibie could run relatively well and peacefully.

“He is also a politician that is very idealistic, not merely pragmatic,” said the Vice President.

Besides, Mr Kalla said, Yusril is a young Muslim thinker who is very fashionable.
“He could wear a cowboy gear, but he could preach about Islam pretty well,” he said, adding that with his moderate thinking Yusril is hoped able to bring a modern Islam.

The Vice President then hoped that Yusril would keep working on his various expertise for the sake of the country.

“He should share his knowledge and expertise to future generation as well,” he affirmed.

Previously at the same event, Yusril said that a 4-volume book entitled “Yusril Ihza Mahendra’s Encyclopedia of Ideas” launched at the ceremony is a compilation of his writings, interviews, public lectures, and speeches for 25 years, from 1990 to 2015.

“By writing the book, I made a reflection on real facts I found in society. What I read is not only formulating the problems, but also providing recommendations for solution,” he said.
Also attending the ceremony were chairman of the People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR) Zulkifli Hasan, former Constitutional Court’s (MK) Chiefs Justice Jimly Assidiqie, Mahfud MD, and Hamdan Zoelva, former State-Owned Enterprises (BUMN) Minister Tanri Abeng, former Manpower and Transmigration Minister Fahmi Idris, and former rector of Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University Azyumardi Azra.*****