Open Letter To
1. Prabowo Subianto – Hatta Rajasa, Candidate for President and Vice President of Republic of Indonesia Number 1
2. Joko Widodo – Jusuf Kalla, Candidate for President and Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia Number 2

Subject: Presidential Candidates and Vice Presidential Candidates Must Open Public Tax Data to the Public

Presidential and vice-presidential candidates are candidates for national leaders who are required to have more serious attention, especially towards a clean, fair, open, and accountable government agenda.

One of the important pillars for the achievement of people’s welfare, fulfillment of basic rights, improvement of human resource capacity, and social protection is the availability of an adequate budget sourced from taxes. Therefore, a leader’s tax policy will determine the pattern of the future budget – is it sufficient to be able to sustain a pro-welfare and pro-justice budget and be able to realize the promises of the presidential/vice presidential campaign. Without measurable, clear, and concrete tax policies, future government budgets can certainly be problematic.

It must be ensured that future leaders must have a strong commitment and courage to (1) counteract tax avoidance practices and firmly punish tax evaders who harm the public interest; and (2) taking major steps towards increasing tax revenue. There are still many sectors that have not been explored properly, as evidenced by the high tax avoidance, low tax revenue from private individuals, and a low number of potential taxpayers registered.

One way that can be done is to test the taxation commitments of the vice-presidential candidates taking the initiative to open their own (voluntary disclosure) Annual Personal Income Letter (SPT) of their Personal Income in public. SPT is the legal tool that is the most easily confirmed and used as a measure of public accountability of a president-vice presidential candidate. The voluntary disclosure of Personal Tax Data by taxpayers also does not violate the Tax Law. Opening the personal tax data of the Presidential Candidates is important to provide something new in our political process, namely, the healthy tradition begins the transparent process of the prospective leader.

This good political tradition is proven to be able to be preserved in the United States and candidates who tend to be transparent and have good tax policy concepts are selected as winners. FD Roosevelt started the political tradition of opening the SPT after his leadership. This continues to the present when Barack Obama is willing to open a Personal Tax Return from 2000-2013 when dealing with Mitt Romney in the battle for Presidential candidates in America. Long before the US and others, Scandinavian countries since the 1800s have been accustomed to publishing the Personal Tax Return as a form of public accountability. As a result, Northern Europe became the barometer and center of the welfare state with the highest Human Development and Happiness Index, the lowest level of poverty and inequality, the highest tax ratio, and low corruption.

A wise leader is not only obedient to pay taxes but must also dare to openly announce personal tax data to the public and want to be watched by the public. The disclosure of personal tax data (SPT) for the Presidential Candidates and Vice Presidential Candidates to the public is important for two reasons. First, see whether the leaders are honest in providing tax information to tax institutions. Second, avoiding conflicts of interest from the policies that will be produced by leaders in the future.

Kastorius Sinaga (Success Team Member of Presidential Candidate Pair Number 1, Prabowo – Hatta Rajasa) and Taufik Bashari (Success Team Member of Candidate Presidential Candidate Pair Number 2, Jokowi – Jusuf Kalla) during a discussion in Jakarta on June 15, 2014, in essence, stated agree that each of the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Candidates will open personal tax data to be known and monitored by the public. But until now there has not been one of the two pairs of Presidential and Vice President candidates who concretely opened their tax data to the public.

Based on the above, we from the Civil Society Coalition for Tax Transparency state:
1. Challenging the two Presidential and Vice-President Candidates voluntarily disclose personal tax data (SPT Persons) in the last 3 years to the public no later than July 5, 2014, or 4 days before the election time.
2. Willing to be present as a witness if the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Candidates want to announce personal tax data to the public.
3. Will conduct a campaign to the public not to vote for the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Candidates who are not willing to announce to the public or are not honest about reporting personal tax data.

Jakarta, June 30, 2014
Civil Society Coalition for Tax Transparency

Firdaus Ilyas (Indonesia Corruption Watch), Roy Salam (Indonesia Budget Center), Uli Parulian (Indonesia Legal Resource Center), Prastowo (Taxation Practitioner), Muji Kartika Rahayu (National Law Reform Consortium), Dahnil Anzar (Academic Faculty of Economics, Sultan Ageng University) Tirtayasa Banten), Rio Ismail (The Ecological Justice), Ibrahim Fahmi Badoh (Transparency International Indonesia), Erwin Natosmal Oemar (Indonesia Legal Roundtable), Sonny Mumbunan (Economic Researcher), Setyo Budiantoro (Prakarsa), Hamong Santono (INFID), Alvon Kunia Palma (Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation), Michael B. Hoelman (Political Observer), Aryanto Nugroho (Publish What You Pay Indonesia).