Bebas Akses

English Maintain the Quiet Period
EDITORIAL

Maintain the Quiet Period

 

KOMPAS/TATANG MULYANA SINAGA
A number of young people from several creative communities make a mural at the Tujuh Ruang office in Bandung city, West Java, Friday (12/4/2019). The activity, entitled “National Declaration of #2019 Indonesia Peace” invited the public to help maintain peace amid differences in political beliefs in the April 17 election.

More than eight months of campaigning for the simultaneous elections has ended. The two presidential candidates also wrapped up the campaign period with the last debate on Saturday (13/4/2019).

Starting Sunday, April 14, 2019, through Tuesday, April 16, 2019, the nation enters the quiet period, which means there should be no campaign activities, dissemination of visions and missions or political activities to persuade voters to elect certain candidates. In the quiet period, campaign paraphernalia are cleared from public spaces.

Quiet periods also apply to all social media. Providers of social media platforms are required to be responsible for not spreading campaign messages to elect certain candidates. Candidates and their campaign teams also have the same commitment to not spread political campaign messages through various platforms.

The Election Oversight Body has a heavy duty to maintain the quiet period so that it is truly quiet. Historically, for the campaign teams, the quiet period sometimes becomes a really uneasy period because various hoax news is circulated. There are hoaxes issued by irresponsible parties, or the practice of money politics, which is increasingly rampant during the quiet period and voting day on April 17, 2019.

Let us make the simultaneous elections on April 17, 2019 a day of joy. Make the election a fiesta of democracy, when people can show their sovereignty to elect leaders. What the KPU and its staffers must ensure is how to protect citizens’ voting rights. Voting rights are citizens’ constitutional rights, which cannot be eliminated under any circumstances. The technicalities of voting must continue to be upheld because this time the elections are complicated. Do not let the people’s voices go to waste because of technical errors during voting.

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The Constitutional Court affirms, with electronic ID cards or a specific letter (suket), voters can elect candidates based on certain conditions. We really hope that citizens’ suffrage is respected and maintained. This is where the professionalism of the organizers is needed in carrying out the elections. Do not let administrative or technical reasons, such as closing the polling stations prematurely, eliminate citizens’ voting rights. That is a constitutional crime.

It is the duty of the National Police and the Indonesian Military (TNI) to maintain a proper social and political situation. We support the steps of the National Police and the TNI to be firm toward various groups that conduct antidemocratic actions. The National Police and the TNI have a role to bring security and comfort so that voters can exercise their constitutional rights happily. TNI and Polri must maintain their neutrality in elections. The politics of the TNI is state politics.

We also hope the pairs of presidential candidates and other legislative candidates will accept whatever the outcome is from the people’s votes on April 17, 2019. The maturity of the elite will determine the quality of democracy. In each election contest there are always winners and losers.

We respect the voice of the sovereign people. The voice of the people is certainly intended to maintain a pluralistic Indonesia in the frame of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia.

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