Students of SMA Bunda Hati Kudus visiting the Constitutional Court, Tuesday (9/5/2023). Photo by MKRI/Ilham W. M.
JAKARTA (MKRI) — The Constitutional Court (MK) welcomed 200 students of SMA (Senior High School) Bunda Hati Kudus on Tuesday, September 5, 2023. One of the Court’s expert assistants to constitutional justices Alboin Pasaribu welcomed the students and deliver a presentation on “The Role of the Constitutional Court in Guarding Constitutional Democracy.”
In his presentation, Pasaribu explained several types of judicial review models. First, the American model where the judicial review of all laws and regulations is carried out by the Supreme Court. Second, the Austrian model, where it is carried out by the Constitutional Court. Third, the French model, where the bills of laws are reviewed before they are passed into laws.
Pasaribu said that the Constitution is the touchstone in reviewing laws because it is the basic law and a reference for the laws and regulations under it.
He also talked about the history of the establishment of the Constitutional Court in Indonesia. The Constitutional Court, he said, was established based on the third amendment to the 1945 Constitution and was the only institution whose establishment was confirmed in the 1945 Constitution in the transitional provisions, which stated that it must be established before August 17, 2003. The 1945 Constitution, he added, defines Indonesia as a democracy as well as a state of law.
Based on the 1945 Constitution, the Constitutional Court has the authority to review laws against the Constitution, decide disputes over the authority of state institutions whose authority is mentioned in the Constitution, decide on the dissolution of political parties, and decide disputes over general election results. It is also obligated to decide the opinion of the House of Representatives (DPR) that the president and / or vice president is guilty of unlawful acts according to the Constitution.
Overtime, the Constitutional Court can also review government regulations in lieu of laws and decide disputes over regional head election results. Pasaribu said that while anyone can interpret the Constitution, the Constitutional Court is the final interpreter and when it has issued a decision, the decision is a final, binding interpretation of the Constitution that applies to all Indonesian citizens.
Post-amendment, here is no longer a supreme state institution; all state institutions are now equal and the only difference is their function. Constitutional democracy is the combination of popular sovereignty and the rule of law. The president’s term of office is limited to avoid abuse of power, which has happened in the past.
In a dispute over the results of the presidential election, Pasaribu explained, the petitioner is a candidate pair participating in the election and the respondent is the KPU (General Election Commission). In a dispute over the results of the legislative election, the petitioner is a political party. Meanwhile, in a dispute over the results of regional head election, the petitioner is a candidate pair participating in the election.
One of the Constitutional Court’s landmark decisions on regional head election, Pasaribu revealed, was that on Sabu Raijua Regency election. Legal facts in the hearing of the case showed that one of the election participants had dual citizenship. Considering this fact, the Court disqualify the candidate in question and ordered the KPU of Sabu Raijua Regency to conduct a re-vote.
Another monumental decision by the Constitutional Court in safeguarding democracy is the use of KTP (resident ID card) and e-KTP certificate for voters who do not receive an invitation letter to vote. Pasaribu revealed that challenging election results is not as easy as it seems because it is related to the vote count margins; the parties must be able to prove where and how the margin has occurred. (*)
Author : Ilham M.W.
Editor : Lulu Anjarsari P.
Translator : Tahlitha Laela/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.
Tuesday, September 05, 2023 | 13:23 WIB 34