House Deputy Speaker: “Abstentions hinder democracy”

Deputy Speaker of the House Sufmi Dasco Ahmad. (Photo: Yoga Agusta)

IO – Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Sufmi Dasco Ahmad puts the spotlight on groups that incite abstaining during the 2024 Elections. 

Dasco elaborated by stating that a discourse among the people about politics and elections is something natural, as everyone has the right to make their own political choices. “The more people think about elections, the better our politics will be, as a public contribution towards positively determining the direction of our nation,” he announced on Sunday (30/05/2021). 

Therefore, Dasco urges that there will be no incitement for the people to abstain. “Abstaining is both an obstruction of the democratic process and a violation of law, which will in turn generate a sanction. To be specific, Article 531 of the Elections Law stated that “Anyone who deliberately uses power to prevent citizens from voting, to create chaos, or to make any attempt to foil the Elections, shall be punished with an imprisonment of a maximum of 4 (four) years and a fine of IDR 48 million at the maximum,” he said. “Furthermore, Article 515 of the same Law stated that “Anyone who deliberately gives away or promises monies or other material goods to voters in order to not use their voting rights, specifically by causing their voting sheets to be invalid, shall be punished with an imprisonment of a maximum of 3 (three) years and a fine of IDR 36 million at the maximum.” 

Dasco went on to request that everyone makes the best use of their political rights and to ignore all incitements to abstain during the Elections. “I do not find abstaining to be honorable at all, and it is not a solution for improving the condition of our nation. Our budget for Elections is enormous. Therefore, we need to use it the best way possible. If we are granted an opportunity that appears once every five years but fail to make use of it, not only do we violate regulations, but we are also wasteful and cowardly,” he said. (Dessy)