Lucius Karus: “Slim possibility of Government Regulation revokes Revised KPK Law”

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The discussion “The Response of Civil Society towards the President’s Decision to Cancel the Issuance of the Government’s Regulation in Lieu of Law (Peraturan Pemerintah Pengganti Undang-undang – “Perppu”)” held at the Secretariat of Community Forum for the Care of the Indonesian Parliament (Forum Masyarakat Peduli Parlemen Indonesia – “Formappi”) in Jalan Matraman, Jakarta, on Monday (04/11/2019). (photo: IO/Dan)

IO, Jakarta – Public rejection of the re­vision to the Corruption Eradication Commission (Komisi Pemberatasan Korupsi – “KPK”) Law, which ended with a series of simultaneous protests in several regions, did not have any effect on President Joko Widodo. In fact, while the people were still hop­ing, Jokowi actually had the temerity to state that he has no plan to issue a Government Regulation in Lieu of Law (Peraturan Pemerintah Pengganti Undang-undang – “Perppu”) to revoke the Law yet, citing the fact that the Revised KPK Law must first be tested at the Supreme Court as the reason. “I – all of us must be aware of etiquette when dealing with State affairs,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Jus­tice and Human Rights has issued the Revised KPK Law, named “Law No. 19/2019 concerning the Second Amendment to Law No. 30/2002 concerning the Corruption Eradica­tion Commission” on 17 October. The enactment was performed after the 30 days since the House of Represen­tatives (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat – “DPR”) approved the law in absentia, as Jokowi refused to sign the valida­tion of the new law.

Indonesia’s Forum for Transparen­cy of Budgets (Forum Indonesia untuk Transparansi Anggaran – “FITRA”) Research Manager Badi’ul Hadi Fitra stated that it appears that Jokowi in­directly allows the polemic concern­ing the new KPK Law to be resolved in the Supreme Court. In other words, Jokowi wants to seem clean of any issues relating to the Revision of the KPK Law. “We notice that the process is something that is frequently seen in our political scene lately. He (the President) hopes that the Supreme Court would take the people’s side and approve the suit submitted by some community groups that the new KPK Law be revoked. We are still entertaining good thoughts that the Supreme Court will support the people, who nowadays have agreed to go through formal processes in maintaining the strength of our one corruption eradication agency. Let’s just hope that the move to revoke the Revision to KPK Law, which the DPR of the previous period enacted at the tail end of their term, will be approved,” he said at the Office of the Community Forum for the Care of the Indonesian Parliament (Forum Masyarakat Peduli Parlemen Indo­nesia – “Formappi”) Secretariat in Jalan Matraman, Jakarta, on Mon­day (04/11/2019)

The Community Coalition Re­jecting the Second Run of the New Order is an amalgamation of the In­donesian Voters’ Committee (Komite Pemilih Indonesia – “TePi”), Exopos­it Strategic, Formappi, FITRA, and LIMA Indonesia that stated that President Joko Widodo’s refusal to issue a Perppu revoking the Revised KPK Law shows his lack of support towards KPK. Formappi research­er Lucius Karus reminds everyone that the power to issue the Perppu lies in Jokowi’s hands as the Presi­dent. “In other words, the possibility of the Perppu being issued anytime soon is slim to none,” he said in a dis­cussion held in Jakarta on Monday (04/11/2019).

Lucius and a number of other ac­tivists, i.e. Ray Rangkuti, Jeiry Su­mampow, Arif Susanto, Syamsud­din Alimsyah, and Badi’ul Hadi then declared the establishment of the “Community Coalition Rejecting the Second Run of the New Order”, as they see the failure to issue a Perppu as a mark that Jokowi is slipping fur­ther and further away from the 1998 Reforms. They also note that the ap­pointment of former military officers to civilian positions is similar to how things were in the 32-year-long New Order. “Therefore, we put up our standards and decide to fight the possible return of a dictatorial New Order,” Ray Rangkuti said.

Ray further points out how Joko­wi’s government is shifting more and more into a new authoritarianism, and has declared that his Coalition will fight this tendency. “As we all know, the New Order is infamous for having been an authoritarian regime. The Government exercised strongly control over the people, limited their freedom of expression, and there was tight control and censorship by those in power. These trends have been nakedly obvious in Jokowi’s govern­ment recently.” (Dan)