Relocation of Capital Cannot Be Amended by New Law

Ichsan Anwary testifying as an expert for the Petitioners at the judicial review hearing of Law No. 8 of 2022 on the South Kalimantan Province, Monday (9/19/2022). Photo by MKRI/Ifa.

Monday, September 19, 2022 | 13:16 WIB

JAKARTA (MKRI)—If Law No. 8 of 2022 on the South Kalimantan Province has different contents than a previous law (the Regional Government Law), especially on the relocation of the capital of a province, regency, or city, the arrangement for the relocation is within regional planning, which is expressly regulated in Law No. 23 of 2014 on Regional Government. Therefore, the legal provision of the article is einmalig (unique, singular). In other words, the article cannot be amended by a new law that similarly regulates autonomous regions.

The statement was made by Ichsan Anwary as an expert for the Petitioners of case No. 60/PUU-XX/2022 at the seventh judicial review hearing of Article 4 of the South Kalimantan Law on Monday, September 19, 2022, regarding cases No. 58/PUU-XX/2022 and No. 59/PUU-XX/2022 filed by the Banjarmasin City Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) (Petitioner I) and several individuals affiliated with the Banjarmasin City Communication Forum (Petitioner II-V), as well as case No. 60/PUU-XX/2022 petitioned by Banjarmasin mayor Ibnu Sina and the South Kalimantan DPRD (Regional Legislative Council) chairman Harry Wijaya.

Also read:

Petitioners Against S. Kalimantan Capital Relocation Revise Legal Standing

Govt: Banjarbaru Designed as Buffer City for New State Capital’s Development

Ichsan revealed that no capital relocation had ever been contained in the amendment to a law. He believed that it is done through government regulations (PP), such as the relocation of the capital of West Sumatera Province from Bukittinggi to Padang (PP No. 29 of 1979); of the relocation of the capital of Tangerang from Tangerang City to Tigaraksa Subdistrict (PP No. 14 of 1995); of the formation of Puncak Jaya and Paniai Regency, and the relocation of the capital of Paniai Regency in Irian Jaya Province (PP No. 52 of 1996).

“As such, Law No. 8 of 2022 on the South Kalimantan Province, especially Article 4, is stagnant/floating and cannot be implemented as the Law doesn’t technically regulate the transition period of the relocation from Banjarmasin City to Banjarbaru City, including the funding for the relocation, which is not expressly stated to be included on which budget,” he explained at the hearing, which was presided over by Deputy Chief Justice Aswanto and the other seven constitutional justices.

Also read: Relocation of Provincial Capital in Line with Banjarbaru City’s Vision

Not Disseminated to Public

Next, Ahmad Barjie B. testified as a witness for the Petitioners of case No. 60/PUU-XX/2022. He asserted that the public had been quite surprised by the promulgation of the Law, which regulates the relocation of South Kalimantan Province’s capital from Banjarmasin City to Banjarbaru City because most of them had not seen the academic text nor had they followed a public review of the bill. “Therefore, it is understandable that the public was surprised and rejected the relocation, citing their reasons, due to the lack of the dissemination on the amended law,” he revealed.

Also read:

Expert, Witness’ Written Testimonies Delayed, Hearing on S. Kalimantan Law Postponed

Petitioners Expert: Regional Capital City Relocation Regulated in Government Regulation

At the preliminary hearing, the Petitioners for case No. 58/PUU-XX/2022 explained that they had been harmed by the South Kalimantan Law since its formation had not involved the community. They alleged that the Law had harmed the entrepreneurs within the Banjarmasin City Kadin (Petitioner I) because the provincial capital city relocation would impact the economy, especially those in the accommodation, culinary, and construction businesses that would hinder the development of supporting infrastructure in Banjarmasin City.

Meanwhile, Petitioners II-V alleged that the ambiguity of the underlying factor of the relocation could harm them because the people’s welfare wouldn’t be a priority amid the economic turbulence due to the COVID-19 pandemic, rising prices, and re-allocation of the provincial budget (APBD) to the new capital city. They believed the relocation would need substantial funding, which could be used for COVID-19 mitigation, aids for the community, and for education.

The Petitioners of case No. 59/PUU-XX/2022 asserted that Article 4 of the South Kalimantan Law, which reads, “The capital city of South Kalimantan Province shall be located in Banjarbaru,” was against Article 1 paragraphs (2) and (3), Article 28D, Article 28F, Article 28H paragraph (1), Article 18B paragraphs (1) and (2) of the 1945 Constitution. Historically, they added, Banjarmasin City had an important role in the development of the province since the 1500s, where it first became a government center. Changing its position is the same as changing history, they declared. Therefore, the article is unconstitutional because, they alleged, there was no justice in disrespecting the history of Banjarmasin—an area full of with traditional rights of Banjarmasin that is still developing today as the capital city of South Kalimantan Province. Therefore, the Petitioners appealed to the Court to grant the petition in its entirety and declare the South Kalimantan Province Law unconstitutional and not legally binding insofar as not interpreted to mean, “The capital city of South Kalimantan Province shall be located in Banjarmasin City and the government shall be located in Banjarbaru City.”

Meanwhile, the Petitioners of case No. 60/PUU-XX/2022 alleged through legal counsel Lukman Fadlun that the formation of the law had not involved the general public and that the House of Representatives (DPR) had not come to Banjarmasin to hear the people’s aspirations. In addition, it also had not pay attention to the harmony of the central-regional governments relations. This, they alleged, was because the South Kalimantan DPRD at its plenary session had not decided to relocate the provincial capital and the local government of Banjarmasin City had not been involved in the harmonization, conciliation, and stabilization of the legal conception until it became a draft of the bill.

Writer        : Sri Pujianti
Editor        : Lulu Anjarsari P.
PR            : Tiara Agustina
Translator  : Yuniar Widiastuti (NL)

Translation uploaded on 9/20/2022 11:18 WIB

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

Monday, September 19, 2022 | 13:16 WIB 44