Provisions on Defamation in New Criminal Code Not in Effect Yet
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Constitutional Justice Manahan M. P. Sitompul reading out the Court legal considerations at the ruling hearing of the judicial review of Law No. 1 of 2023 on the Criminal Code (KUHP), Tuesday (2/28/2023). Photo by MKRI/Ifa.


Tuesday, February 28, 2023 | 17:01 WIB

JAKARTA (MKRI) — The Constitutional Court (MK) dismissed a judicial review petition concerning provisions of insult and defamation against president/vice president and the Government in Article 218 paragraph (1), Article 219, Article 240 paragraph (1), and Article 241 paragraph (1) of Law No. 1 of 2023 on the Criminal Code (KUHP). The ruling hearing for Decision No. 7/PUU-XXI/2023, petitioned by law lecturer of the University of Indonesia Fernando Manullang, lecturer of the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences (FISIP) of Atma Jaya University Yogyakarta Dina Listiorini, content creator Eriko Fahri Ginting, and university student Sultan Fadillah Effendi (Petitioners I-IV), took place on Tuesday, January 28, 2023 in the plenary courtroom.

Reading out the Court’s legal considerations, Constitutional Justice Manahan M. P. Sitompul stated that the Petitioners had not provided sufficient proof of their activities that were subject to the new Criminal Code, especially the articles on insult and defamation, since the Criminal Code currently in effect regulates protection for the president/vice president, the Government, and state agencies against insult and defamation.

The Court has also considered the Petitioners’ legal standing following Decision No. 1/PUU-XXI/2023, and declared the Petitioners lacking legal standing. However, even if they had and if the Court had considered the subject matter, since the articles are not yet in effect, the Court declared the petition premature. “[The Court] adjudicated, declares the Petitioners’ petition inadmissible,” said Chief Justice Anwar Usman reading out the verdict.

Also read:

Petitioners Challenge Articles on Defamation against Govt

Petitioners of Articles on Defamation against Govt Affirms Background

At the preliminary hearing on Tuesday, January 24, through legal counsel Zico Leonard Djagardo Simanjuntak, the Petitioners asserted that in exercising the state administration, the Government receives criticisms and inputs from citizens, often in inappropriate ways, which could lead to insults or defamatory statements.

Therefore, the Government deserves protection from such acts. However, they argued that it does not afford them a special article in the law. For this reason, the Petitioners requested that the Court declare Article 218 paragraph (1), Article 219, Article 240 paragraph (1), and Article 241 paragraph (1) of the Criminal Code unconstitutional and not legally binding. 

Author       : Sri Pujianti
Editor        : Nur R.
PR            : Muhammad Halim
Translator  : Yuniar Widiastuti (NL)

Translation uploaded on 3/1/2023 08:33 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.


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