Delegation of Afghanistan Visiting the Court

Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court (The Court) Moh. Mahfud MD accompanied by Vice Chief Justice of The Court Achmad Sodiki and its Secretary General Janedjri M. Gaffar while receiving the visiting delegations from Afghanistan, on Wednesday (26/1).

Jakarta, MKOnline - The current Indonesian constitutional development is inseparable from the presence of the Constitutional Court (The Court). One of the factor is related to the authority of the Constitutional Court to resolve the dispute over the election result (PHPU). Although relatively new in existence, recognized or not, The Court has made a major contribution in the dynamics of Indonesian politics. Therefore, many institutions and agencies from various countries to learn from Indonesia, particularly from the Constitutional Court. 

In this regard, the Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court Moh. Mahfud MD was accompanied by Vice-Chief Justice, Ahmad Sodiki, Secretary General of The Court Janedjri M. Gaffar and Head of Public Relations and Protocol Noor Sidhartha on Wednesday (26/1), received the visit of the delegation from Afghanistan. Delegation consists of Abdul Ghafoor (The Asian Foundation), Nasrullah S. (Kabul University), Shinkai Zahine Karokhail (Afghanistan Parliament), Jandan Spinghahr (Free and Fair Election Afghanistan / FEFA) and Mawlawi Abdul Bari (Ulama Council). 

"We want to learn from Indonesia regarding several things, particularly the general election," said Abdul Ghafoor explaining the intention of the visit. "We prioritize Indonesia because Indonesia is an Islamic country, a country that has a long history in democracy and has a great cultural richness." 

Responding to the statement, Mahfud asserted, Indonesia is not an Islamic state. Because, he said, addressing an Islamic state to Indonesia is less precise. "Indonesia is an Islamic country but not an Islamic state. The two are different, because if the Islamic state is using Islamic law as the official state law. While in Indonesia, Islamic law is not the official state law, but it gives shades to the state law, "he explained. 

On that occasion, various matters related to the implementation of the authority of the Constitutional Court and the Election were discussed. Mahfud explained, since 2003, Indonesia had a special court  to resolve the election dispute, that was through the Court. And, since 2008, the authority to adjudicate disputes in the Regional Head Election (Pemilukada) had been transferred to the Court from the Supreme Court (MA). "Until now, no less 270 cases (Regional Election, red) has been handled," described Mahfud. 

"This is a progress for Indonesian political system and state administration," he said. "Because, prior to 2004, there was never any dispute over election results that could be prosecuted," he continued. 

In addition, Sodiki added, although normatively Court were only authorized to hear disputes concerning the election results, but in practice, the Court did not only base its opinion merely on the results of vote counting. The Court also, continued Sodiki, considered the process that affected the voting results of each candidate. "Therefore, the results were determined by a process, then the Court examined the process until it comes to a number. It is the process that is crucial. Because, if the process is good then the results will be trustworthy, and if not then it will be annulled, "he said. 

Furthermore, the event sponsored by the National Secretary of the People's Voter Education Network (JPPR) and the Asian Network for Free Election (ANFREL) was also filled with questions and answers. In a question and answer it, the delegates questioned, one of them, about the relationship of the Constitutional Court with other law enforcement elements, such as Attorney General, MA and even with the Election Supervisory Body (Bawaslu). In addition, they also asked the election dispute resolution mechanism in Indonesia. (Dodi / mh/ydj)

Thursday, January 27, 2011 | 14:14 WIB 224