Putting female candidates in a zigzag way (one in three candidates) in legislative member candidate list is a form of protection for female political rights which has been marginalized and discriminated so far. As comparison, female representation in political party data, in France it is set for 50 percent, in Argentine it is set 30 percent, Bangladesh 30 percent, Pakistan 33 percent.

That was Government statement delivered by Expert Staff of Minister of Domestic Affairs, Agung Mulyana, in the trial of Act No. 10/2008 about General Election for Members of House of Representatives, City Council, and Regional Parliament (Act on General Election), Wednesday (12/11), at Constitutional Court s Plennary Court Room.

The case No. 22&24/PUU-VI/2008 was filed by Muhammad Sholeh (member candidate for East Java House of Representatives 2009-2014 for election area one Surabaya-Sidoarjo from Indonesian Party of Struggle), Sutjipto, S.H., M.Kn. (member candidate for Indonesian House of Representatives from Democrat Party), Septi Notariana, S.H., M. Kn., (Member candidate for Indonesian House of Representatives from Democrat Party) and Jose Dima Satria, S.H., M.Kn., (voter candidate 2009).

Petitioner for Case No. 22, Muhammad Sholeh, argued that male and female had equal rights before the law even in government and political field. For that, he said, there should not have been zigzag numbering in arranging candidate names between male and female. “Ideally even female joins politics, but there should not be any speciality which will result in discrimination,” said Sholeh.

Adding to the information from the Government, Member of the General Election Commission, I Gusti Putu Arte, explained that based on the Regulation of the Election Commission No. 18/2008 on Procedure for members of House, City Council, and Regional Parliament Candidacy, the Commission had emphasized sharply when a political party did not meet the 30 percent quota, then no matter how much minimum number submitted, female legislative candidates should have been put in small numbers.

Supporting the government s and the Commission s statements, Commissioner of Female National Commission, Samsi Ahmad, said that 30 percent quota for female representation did not violate Article 28H of 1945 Constitution. “To the Petitioners, if needed, we can provide refrences to support the fact that it is not discrimination,” emphasized Samsi.

Number list vs Majority votes

Not only questioning about female representation, the Petitioners also questioned about stipulation for fixed legislative candidates Tak hanya persoalan keterwakilan perempuan, para Pemohon juga mempersoalkan which was based on number list and not majority votes.

Sholeh compared them with Presidential Election and Regional Head which were based on majority votes. “Now it is only legislative election where political party s authority do not want to let go, so that in our terminology, the party acts as political broker,” explained Sholeh.

For this problem, the Commission said that they were ready to follow up the mechanism of deciding candidate for legislatives either using number list as mentioned in Act a quo or using majority votes as agreed by party internal. (Wiwik Budi Wasito)
Photo: Doc. MK PR/Andhini SF

Translated by YOGI DJATNIKA / MK

Wednesday, November 12, 2008 | 14:04 WIB 274