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Women and The Dynamic of Rural Politics

Background :
A village woman who has a great concern , dreaming want to change conditions but poor agrarian village . Suwarni her name . I met with the courageous mother of two children in a discussion about the health of mothers and babies , a few years ago . Many critical questions submitted Suwarni in the forum , which was attended by government officials , non-governmental organizations and women's organizations also volunteers at the village level , even a midwife was also there . Suwarni witnessed so enthusiastic in discussions and some may debate that happens , mentality really tested .
A month after that discussion , Suwarni name became warm conversation in the corner of the village . Some of the women farmer groups Suwarni considered as a prospective leader who was born amid the village leadership crisis . If women want birth of Suwarni , but other communities want it silenced forever . Especially the village officials who were all men , considered Suwarni as a threat . So the various steps taken to make Suwarni no longer speak in any forum . Her husband is a farmer, also feeling the effects of openness Suwarni in expressing an opinion about the poor health services in her village . At least , there are a few people came to him in the field to convey the threat of village officials , especially from the family of the head village.
The women get together , they discuss to plan a meeting which was attended by only close people can be trusted . There are about 30 women from various interests present there , most of whom are agricultural laborers wetlands . A wife of a poor family , feel very honored because her house is used for such activities . Suntini her name . She is a very humble woman worker , working as farm laborers live with full of hope. Her husband became construction workers in the capital , while his only daughter studying in junior high school .
Elimination of the role of women in agriculture and poor health services for mothers and children , is grounds for women in the village Blumbangrejo to unite . Gather more ideas from women , will add strength to realize Suwarni's big dreams. Meeting at home Suntini just a start , because subsequent meetings can not be prevented by anyone , including by the head village. Suwarni and her colleagues keep doing discussion , debate and discussion continue throughout 2011 . Until the end of 30 women were split into two camps , a group loyal to the dream and the surrender by intimidation village officials .
There are only 19 women who still survive in mid-2012 , with the same passion and dream , namely voicing women's basic needs and demands of optimal public service. Groups of women in the village Blumbengrejo no longer a discussion group of women are considering women struggle with how to move from house to house . Now , the group discussion board and it has to have a clear division of labor . Decree of the Head Village No. 05 The year 2012 has been the official documents that support the advocacy work for women's organizations led by Suwarni . Blumbangrejo Asri of Women's Network ( JARBANGSRI ) was born at the right time at the end of 2012 , as an organization of women who would be a counterweight to the village government.

Problem formulation :
Why women find it difficult expressing an opinion ? What are the factors behind women hard to expressing an opinion? Why is important for the expression of women opinion? What is the link between the political village and the women opinion? Why women need to be involved in village politics ?

Discussion :
Indonesia is an agrarian culture , the actual role of women in the agricultural sector is quite large . Starting from seed selection , soil management , plant maintenance until harvest . The active involvement of women in agriculture is not in doubt , women as housewives have equal role with men in decision-making level of the family . Men and women cooperate at almost every stage . However, not so in the life of society . Women are a minority in a variety of activities , especially activities involving decision making .
According Suwarni , for more than three decades , the man who served as head village is " coincidence " is derived from a single lineage . A coincidence can not be accepted by Suwarni , so she's constantly searching for an answer to her own question . Suwarni very lucky to have a very understanding husband , her role as Chairman of JARBANGSRI have the full support of the family . However , other women comrades are not as fortunate as her , which is able to express opinions without fear . The family has an important role in the political education of women , there was a process of dialogue and negotiation occur naturally . The mentality of the women became more refined as often dialectic with the entire family .
Suwarni suspect , due to the silence of women in the political education within the family is not well honed . All decisions regarding resources , dominated by men as heads of households . Even about pregnancy and health services that should be in the access of women , into the absolute judgment of men , because they are the head of my family . Habits of women waiting for the decision of the head of the family is then passed on to their children , especially girls . She did not fully understand why a wife should live in fear of expressing opinions in front of her husband . And the girls in the village must be obeyed , when the brothers have the support of parents to access higher education from her .
In the midst of the changing times that have always called for the spirit of democracy , the condition of women in her village just awakened from a long sleep . October 2013 was the month in the Village Blumbangrejo politics , there is a new village elections there . The old head village back long run in this period , he mustered all the strength that is held for the campaign . His name Fery . He tried to reach public sympathy by distributing uniforms for village officials to youth groups and farmers . Not enough by " distributing uniform " action, a few moments before starting the democratic party , distribution of any money he did through those beliefs . There are about 800 voters who split into three voices , Fery lost , because the majority of society no longer support him .
Not wanting to miss the moment either , Suwarni and their women comrades of the organization JARBANGSRI consolidation with village officials held under the leadership of the new head village . The aim is to introduce the existence of an organization of women who have a dream to improve the welfare of rural communities , especially poor women . Suwarni understand , the month December 2013 is the most appropriate time to introduce JARBANGSRI on policy makers . As an organization of women who have had legal , there is no reason for her not to be involved in decision-making forums at the village level .
In Indonesia , local budgeting process begins with accommodating the aspirations of the community through the " Development Planning Meeting " , or abbreviated with MUSRENBANG . The discussion is conducted in stages , starting from the village to the sub-district and the district level. MUSRENBANG process is very useful for the preparation of the " Work Plan Local Government " . That is , if the aspirations of the people agreed , the proposed activities will be financed by local governments .
Women's aspirations have been accommodated in the village MUSRENBANG Blumbangrejo in December 2013 , including computer training for women , improving the quality of health care for pregnant women and infants , strengthening capital through cooperative farming . Suwarni and her friends do not care whether their aspirations will be agreed in the decision-making forum of higher or not . She just wanted to express opinions , opinions that he though with female comrades through lengthy discussions since 2011. She realized , aspirations JARBANGSRI will be filtered in the process of determining the priority activities in the village and sub-district level . Whatever the eventual outcome , participate in development planning meeting at the village level is an invaluable political experience for women's organizations .

Conclusion :
The low participation of women in decision-making forums at the village level weakens women's access to and control of resources , economic , social and political . Inequality of participation , access and control of rural women will increasingly marginalize the role of women in development . Changing the structure of the community is important , but building similar relationships between men and women is far more important . Due to changes in the condition of the people is not enough to change the structure , but it should change the way the society . Equivalent relation will only be realized if the entire community understand how important sharing power , responsibility and resources for more equitable welfare .


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