Election Organizers Question Workloads During Simultaneous Elections

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Thursday, June 10, 2021 | 08:56 WIB

JAKARTA, Public Relations—The preliminary hearing of the judicial review of Law No. 7 of 2017 on General Elections was held by the Constitutional Court (MK) on Wednesday afternoon, June 9, 2021. The petition No. 16/PUU-XIX/2021 was filed by Akhid Kurniawan, Dimas Permana Hadi, Heri Darmawan, and Subur Makmur, who gave power of attorney to Fadli Ramadhanil, Catherine Natalia, Heroik Mutaqin Pratama, and Kahfi Adlan Hafiz.

They challenge Article 167 paragraph (3) and Article 347 paragraph (1) of the Election Law. The former reads, “The voting process in an election shall be conducted simultaneously on a holiday or a day determined as a national holiday,” while the latter reads, “The voting of all elections shall be conducted simultaneously.

The Petitioners are citizens who worked as an election organizer in a polling station working committee (KPPS), a subdistrict election committee (PPK), and polling committee (PPS) during the 2019 Elections. Akhid Kurniawan was a KPPS member at TPS 024 of Wirokerten Village, Banguntapan Subdistrict, Bantul Regency, Yogyakarta Special Province. Dimas Permana Hadi was a PPK member of Ngaglik Subdistrict, Sleman Regency, Yogyakarta Special Province. Heri Darmawan was a PPK member of Sukmajaya Subdistrict, Depok City, West Java Province. Subur Makmur was a PPS member of Abadijaya Village, Sukmajaya Subdistrict, Depok City, West Java Province.

Attorney Kahfi Adlan Hafiz talked about the Petitioners’ workloads as KPPS, PPK, and PPS members in the 2019 Elections. He said that there was a fundamental issue concerning the workloads of election organizers.

“The workloads of election organizers, especially KPPS, PPK, and PPS, according to Petitioners, were very heavy, irrational, and inappropriate,” he said. The Petitioner reasoned that it was because the elections were carried out simultaneously with five ballots to elect the president and vice president, the House of Representatives (DPR), the Regional Representatives Council (DPD), the provincial DPRD (Regional Legislative Council), and the regency/city DPRD.

Kahfi relayed Akhid Kurniawan’s recount (Petitioner I) of the KPPS’ duties, which were not only limited to the voting day, but also at least since three days before voting day. They include receiving and securing the logistics and building the polling stations (TPS).

Despite their grievance, the Petitioners intend to participate in KPPS, PPK, and PPS in the 2024 Elections. However, they filed the petition not only in relation to their duties in the 2019 Elections, but also because the issue will have greater impacts on the workloads of ad hoc election organizers throughout the country in 2024—especially KPPS, PPK, and PPS—on voting, vote counting, and recapitulation. They believe that it is directly related to the smooth running of honest and fair elections in accordance with the people’s sovereignty, with more rational, appropriate, and humane workloads for the election organizers.

Justices’ Advice 

In response to the Petitioners’ arguments, panel chair Constitutional Justice Saldi Isra highlighted their constitutional loss. “The [elaboration of] constitutional loss must mention the constitutional rights that are violated if the petition is not granted. [You] must refer to the provisions in the 1945 Constitution and specify the articles so that [the Court] is able to assess whether there has been impairment in the constitutional rights,” he said.

Meanwhile, Constitutional Justice Enny Nurbaningsih advised the Petitioners to mention the contentious articles in the subject of the petition in order to show the public the articles they challenge. She recommended that the Court’s authority be made briefer and the legal standing be elaborated.

Constitutional Justice Manahan M. P. Sitompul questioned the whether the Petitioners’ constitutional loss only concerns workload. “Are there any other thing that constitute loss of the Petitioners’ constitutional rights?” he asked.

Writer        : Nano Tresna Arfana
Editor        : Nur R.
PR            : Tiara Agustina
Translator  : Yuniar Widiastuti (NL)

Translation uploaded on 6/10/2021 13:50 WIB

Disclaimer: The original version of the news is in Indonesian. In case of any differences between the English and the Indonesian version, the Indonesian version will prevail.