KPU nixes e-voting

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Ilham Saputra
KPU Chairman Ilham Saputra. Photo: DOC. KPU

Jakarta, IO – The General Elections Commission (KPU) has announced that it has no plan to implement an e-voting system or vote via the internet, their story being that would exhaust the election administration budget. 

KPU Chairman Ilham Saputra pointed out that e-voting will require a massive new hardware investment, implying a great deal of budgetary expenditure. “The e-voting machines also need intensive maintenance,” complained Ilham, at Jakarta’s KPU office on Tuesday (3/29). 

Ilham is of the opinion that implementing e-voting in the 2024 general election will make no substantial contribution, as the existing voting system seems to run smoothly, without any critical issues. 

He added that people will willingly come to polling stations. The current issue lies in vote counting and recapitulation.

“The ‘suspicious’ part is the recapitulation. That’s why we use information technology (IT) to work it out,” explained Ilham. 

“To maintain transparency, people can directly access information, which is updated daily. The public can immediately see the results, every time the C1 result is updated,” said Ilham. 

Deputy Speaker of Committee II of the House of Representatives Luqman Hakim stated that current Law No. 7/2017 does not allow any possibility of e-voting in the 2024 general election. 

He remarked that future elections in Indonesia must embrace relevant IT advances, as this would expedite the rights of the people in honoring the authenticity of their voices. 

Luqman also expressed his disappointment with the Government for declining to discuss a revision of the Election Law in February 2021. 

He argued that the various shortcomings in the 2019 general election will not be rectified in the upcoming 2024 election, including the lack of legal capacity to use IT as the main instrument for the event. “E-voting is not the only appealing aspect of digital elections. There are also features like e-recapitulation, e-voter roster and other. However, none of those would be feasible for the 2024 election because the current Election Law has not been revised,” Luqman said. 

Luqman urges concrete steps to accomplish the e-voting system in Indonesia’s election by proposing a revision to the Election Law to President Jokowi. 

He is confident that all factions in the House are ready to discuss the Election Law revision if the President is willing to bring it up with the House. 

“Without the revision of the Election Law, the February 14, 2024, general election will not differ much from the 2019 election, as there is no legal protection that legitimizes many IT-based election innovations,” Luqman said. 

Previously, Communication and Information Minister Johnny G. Plate proposed an e-voting system for the 2024 election. 

Plate referred to positive experiences of other countries, such as Estonia and India, which have implemented this system. Plate believes that IT infrastructure will be ready by 2024. He said all villages will be equipped with 4G connections before the 2024 general election. (des)