Jakarta-wapresri.go.id Vice President Jusuf Kalla received the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) chairman Dr. K.H. Ma’ruf Amin along with the organization’s board members in his office on Jalan Merdeka Utara, Jakarta, Monday (April 3).

In the meeting, Ma’ruf told the Vice President the MUI’s plan to hold the Muslim Economic Congress on April 22-24, 2017 under the theme “the New Indonesian Economy Stream”. He then invited Vice President to close the event.

“With this congress, it is expected that we could build synergy, coordination, synchronization, and acceleration to make economic movements in the society grow faster and we could reduce inequality,” said Ma’ruf.

Among Indonesian Muslims, he continued, there have been many populist economic movements, such as the National Care Forum (Forum Peduli Bangsa) in several Islamic boarding schools and the 212 Islamic Economic Cooperation chaired by Dr. Syafii Antonio, a prominent expert in sharia economy. Unfortunately, said Ma’ruf, these movements are not yet well coordinated and they walk on their own.

In response, the Vice President explained that inequality that is existing now is not triggered by political and bureaucratic problems, but more due of economic problems.

He further argued, the most dangerous inequality is even existing in the country because the groups of the rich and the poor are different in terms of their ethnicity and religion.

“While other countries like Thailand, the Philippines, Russia and even the United States are also experiencing inequality, but the inequality in those countries is not as extreme as that in Indonesia since the rich and the poor come from the same race and religion,” said the Vice President.

He then underscored two things that should be done by the government and the MUI.

“The government should make an affirmative policy in favor of the people, while the MUI should encourage spirit and education among Muslims,” ​​he said.

At the end of the meeting, the Vice President supported the congress especially to motivate Muslims to improve their economy. He then asked that the congress or other similar events to be held modestly by accentuating efficiency and cost savings.

Also present with the MUI chairman in that meeting were the Secretary General of the MUI Anwar Abbas, Chairman of the Congress Committee Lukmanul Hakim, Chairman of the Economic Commission Azrul Tanjung, and the Deputy Secretary of Economic Affairs Hazuarli and Delmenita.