Petitioners of Provisions on Defamation Revise Petition

Legal counsel Shaleh Al Ghifari (center) conveying the petition revisions at the panel judicial review hearing of the Criminal Code and the EIT Law, Tuesday (8/22/2023). Photo by MKRI/Ifa.

JAKARTA (MKRI) — Another material judicial review hearing of Law No. 1 of 1946 on the Criminal Code (KUHP) in conjunction with Law No. 4 of 1976 on the Amendment and Addition to Articles in the Criminal Code Relating to the Expansion of the Applicability of Provisions on Criminal Law, Aviation Crimes, and Crimes against Aviation Facilities/Infrastructure in conjunction with Law No. 27 of 1999 on the Amendment to the Criminal Code Relating to Crimes against State Security and Law No. 11 of 2008 on Electronic Information and Transactions (EIT Law) took place on Monday, September 4, 2023 in one of the Constitutional Court’s (MK) panel courtrooms.

The case No. 78/PUU-XXI/2023 was filed by Azhar, Fatiah Maulidiyanti, the Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI), and the Alliance of the Independent Journalists (AJI) (Petitioners I-IV).

On site at the hearing, legal counsel Shaleh Al Ghifari said that the petition had been adjusted to the standard format following the Constitutional Court Regulation (PMK) No. 2 of 2021. The mention of Law No. 4 of 1976 had also been revised by adding the phrase “as last amended by.”

“We have adjusted the petitum following PMK No. 2 of 2021. We’d also like to assert that the petition is not ne bis in idem, with explanation on pages 24-30. We have different touchstones and constitutional reasons,” he said before the panel chaired by Constitutional Justice Suhartoyo.

He also said that the legal standing had also been elaborated with reference to the organizations’ statutes/bylaws, which were offered as evidence.

Also read: Provisions on Defamation against State Officials Challenged

In the petition, Haris Azhar and Fatiah Maulidiyanti (Petitioners I and II) argue that their constitutional rights have been impaired due to the articles being petitioned. They believe those articles have criminalized them, whose work is focused on promoting human rights and the eradication of corruption, collusion, and nepotism (KKN). They also argue that the a quo articles were in fact used to criminalize those who critique of state officials and government policies. Petitioners I and II claimed that law enforcement officials prioritized criminal proceedings against them rather than following up, examining, and adjudicating cases that actually matter.

The Petitioners hoped the Court would accept and grant their provisional petition and order the East Jakarta District Court to stop and postpone the examination of cases No. 202/Pid.Sus/2023/PN Jkt.Tim and No. 203/Pid.Sus/2023/PNJkt.Tim until the Constitutional Court’s hands down a decision on this case. They also request that Article 14, Article 15, and Article 310 paragraph (1) of the Criminal Code and Article 27 paragraph (3) in conjunction with Article 45 paragraph (3) of the EIT Law be declared unconstitutional  and not legally binding.

Author  : Utami Argawati
Editor   : Lulu Anjarsari P.
PR        : M. Halim
Translator          : Yuniar Widiastuti (NL)

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 04, 2023 | 15:31 WIB 315