The Constitutional Court Held a Colloquium with the Democratic Party

Through indepth study of the constitution and the Constitutional Court Procedural Law, it is expected that the cadres of the Democratic Party will be able to participate in developing a culture of constitutional awareness which is one of the front pillars of life as an Indonesian nation and state in the future.

This was conveyed by Anas Urbaningrum, the Chairperson of the Organizing Committee from the Democratic Party for the event “Colloquium on the Constitutional Court Procedural Law for the Cadres of the Democratic Party throughout Indonesia”, which was held in Jakarta , Friday (25/05).

Whereas in his remarks, the Chairperson of the Democratic Party H. Hadi Utomo said that political parties have an important role in the constitutional system. For that reason, on this occasion Hadi Utomo told his cadres to follow every session of the colloquium thoroughly and seriously so that they will not only gain understanding on the Constitutional Court’s Procedural Law, particularly concerning resolutions of disputes on election results, but they will also acquire comprehensive understanding on the amended version of the 1945 Constitution.

Related to the proposal for the Fifth Amendment raised by the Regional Representative Council (DPD), Hadi Utomo expected that through this event, better understanding on the substance of the 1945 Constitution will be achieved. “ The results of this event will hopefully serve as a material for the cadres of the Democratic Party in taking a stand, whether to support or oppose (the fifth amendment), as this will affect the future of the nation and state,” he explained.

Meanwhile in his remarks, the Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court Prof. Dr. Jimly Asshiddique, S.H. expressed his expectation for a better election in 2009 particularly with regard to the resolution of disputes on election results. “We can not afford to play around with political battle for channeling the people’s aspirations as we do not want problems occurring during the election to escalate into become political conflicts, or social conflicts. Therefore, legal and constitutional channels to resolve any problem arising during elections must be provided from the start,” explained Jimly.

As a realization of the freedom of assembly protected by the constitution, Jimly continued, political parties must not be arbitrarily disbanded, except through a judicial process, namely through the Constitutional Court as the sole institution permitted by the constitution to dissolve political parties.

Local Election to be included in the Election regime

Specifically with regard to Local Elections (Pilkada), Jimly explained that, currently there is Law No. 22 Year 2007 regarding Administrators of General Elections which incorporates Local Elections into the general election regime.

It means that, from the perspective of its conception, Local Elections and general elections have been considered as one single regime. Therefore, both of them are administered by the KPU (General Election Commission). In general, KPU administers elections legislative and executive at the central and regional levels. “This is the ‘concept’ of the law,” he explained.

Jimly continued that, the creation of a single general election regime in the law is related to the decision of the Constitutional Court Year 2005 which recommend to law makers to determine based on a certain legal politics, as long as it is consistent, whether local elections will be incorporated into general election regime or not “. If local elections are included in the general election regime, it means that the general election will be administered by the KPU and disputes regarding election results will be resolved by the Constitutional Court,” he explained.

Pursuant to Law Number 22 Year 2007, there is a possibility that dispute resolution of local elections results will be transferred to the Constitutional Court. However, certainly, Jimly continued, this is not automatic because the law only provides for the general election administrators and it does not provide for institution for election dispute which up to now is still regulated in the Regional Government laws. â€œThus up to now, the administrators and participants of local elections must remain applying the existing law namely laws on regional government and general elections as long as local elections and disputes of local election results are concerned.,” explained Jimly. (Wiwik Budi Wasito)

Wednesday, May 30, 2007 | 13:41 WIB 136