MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, SEMARANG – President of Muhammadiyah Haedar Nashir mentioned two essential actions to elevate society’s living standards: transforming the mindset of Muslims and Indonesians and accelerating the performance of centers of excellence in knowledge and technology.
Those two actions are more practical for advancing the nation than relying solely on populist leaders.
“To advance, we need to change the mindset of Muslims and the Indonesian nation. Shifting from irrational communal thinking to a rational, objective, merit-based, and governance-oriented approach is crucial. Muhammadiyah is prepared for such a system. However, if conflicting systems persist, the development will not be achieved by both the nation and the community,” said Haedar Nashir in the inauguration of the Rector of Universitas Muhammadiyah Semarang (Unimus) on Saturday (July 22).
The irrational communal mindset is characterized by instability, easily influenced by artificial issues, and constantly shifting without resolving any of them.
For instance, Indonesia is enthusiastic about promoting Indonesian Islam internationally, but significant domestic issues remain unresolved.
Besides, Indonesians are easily deceived by figures labeled as populist leaders, drawn in by their rhetoric and narratives, despite their inadequate track records.
“In the age of social media, people often make fleeting appearances in the market and are hailed as populist leaders. However, their actions lack substance, and they fail to uplift small, and medium enterprises (SMEs) to the upper-middle class. The leaders’ brief interactions with food sellers without improving their livelihoods leave them to suffer while these figures benefit from exploiting poverty,” said Haedar.
“Indonesians often favor such behavior, thinking, ‘Wow, this is a populist leader.’ However, a true populist leader should be capable of substantially improving the people’s life quality and leading to greater prosperity,” said Haedar.
Haedar believes that by overcoming the irrational communal mindset and fostering competent centers of excellence, Indonesia’s competitiveness will rise, making it worthy of promoting its ideas globally.
“Through Muhammadiyah and ‘Aisyiyah universities and hospitals, we strive to contribute to national education, enhance general welfare, and lead Indonesia towards greater progress,” said Haedar.