The Requirement On Minimum Age For Indonesian Overseas Labor Does Not Violate The Constitution
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The requirement on the minimum age of 21 in Article 35 Sub-Article a of Law No. 39 Year 2004 concerning the Placement and Protection of Indonesian Overseas Labor (PPTKI Law) has been in line with the principle of limitation which is objectively and reasonably justified by a legitimate aim. This was disclosed in a plenary hearing for the pronouncement of decision of the Constitutional Court today (12/4) in Jakarta.

Article 35 Sub-Article a of the PPTKI Law, to the extent it contains the phrase “…except for Indonesian Labor candidates who will be employed by individual Employers shall have reached the minimum age of 21 (twenty one)”, was petitioned for judicial review by Jamilah Tun Sadiah, cs. (Case No. 028/PUU-IV/2006) and Esti Suryani, cs. (Case No. 029/PUU-IV/2006). They claimed that the article has violated their constitutional rights as regulated in Article 27 Paragraph (2) and Article 28D Paragraph (2) of the 1945 Constitution.

In the hearing open for the public, the Constitutional Court declared to reject the petition. Such rejection was spiced with four dissenting opinions by the Constitutional Court Justices H.M. Laica Marzuki, H. Abdul Mukthie Fadjar, Maruarar Siahaan, and H. Harjono.

According to the Constitutional Court, the provision of Article 35 Sub-Article a of the PPTKI law is not abolition of the right to employment, but constitutes a justifiable requirement in the context of fulfilling the obligation of the state to protect its citizens employed by individual Employers abroad.

In its legal considerations, the Constitutional Court explains that the law which provides for the minimum age of 21 (twenty one) as the limit for a matured personality and emotion can not be claimed to have impaired a person’s right to work, not to mention the right to life. The first reason is that there is no judicial criterion of general nature concerning the minimum age limitation for a matured personality and emotion which applies in such circumstances. Therefore, the provision on the minimum age limitation for a matured personality and emotion shall be under the state’s authority to determine.

The second reason is that the basis underlying the provision on the minimum age limitation is the awareness of the state’s obligation to provide protection for its citizens who are in a condition where it is impossible for the state to provide such protection without any impediments due to such limitation set forth by the international law. (Luthfi Widagdo Eddyono).

Friday, April 13, 2007 | 10:03 WIB 302
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