Court Orders Revote, Recount for Five Polling Stations in Cianjur 3

The Petitioner’s legal counsel Aryo Sarwo Sembodo attending a ruling hearing for the 2024 legislative election results dispute of Cianjur 3, West Java Province, Thursday (6/6/2024) in the plenary courtroom. Photo by MKRI/Ifa.

JAKARTA (MKRI) —The Constitutional Court (MK) has ordered a revote at TPS (polling station) 15 and a subsequent recount at TPS 12, 13, 14, and 16 in Mentengsari Village, Cikalongkulon Subdistrict, Cianjur Regency. This decision was announced by the Court at a ruling hearing for case No. 55-02-02-12/PHPU.DPR-DPRD-XXII/2024 filed by Hendry Juanda, a Gerindra (Great Movement Party) legislative candidate for the DPRD (Regional Legislative Council) in Cianjur Regency 3.

“Relating to the petition’s subject matter, [the Court] grants the Petitioner’s petition in part, declares the election results of the DPRD candidates for Cianjur Regency in the electoral district 3 must be revoted and recounted,’’ said Chief Justice Suhartoyo in the plenary courtroom on Thursday, June 6, 2024.

Furthermore, the Court canceled the General Elections Commission (KPU) Decree No. 360 of 2024 as it pertains to the vote acquisition of the DPRD candidates for Cianjur Regency 3. The Court ordered the KPU as the Respondent to conduct the revote and recount within a maximum period of 30 days from the pronouncement of the verdict without the need to report to the Court.

The Court also ordered the KPU and Bawaslu (Elections Supervisory Body) to conduct supervision and coordination to ensure the implementation of the decision. Furthermore, the Court ordered the National Police and its subordinates, especially the West Java Regional Police and the Cianjur Police Precinct, to secure the revote and recount process in accordance with their authority.

Vote Casting by Village Head

In its legal considerations, delivered by Constitutional Justice Daniel Yusmic P. Foekh, the Court stated that the criminal election violation committed by Mentengsari village head Somantri, who recast ballots that had been previously cast for the election of DPRD candidates for Cianjur Regency in electoral district 3, was not disputed by the KPU. Moreover, the Cianjur District Court has issued a decision that Somantri had been proven to be legitimately and convincingly guilty of committing a criminal act by intentionally engaging in actions that rendered voters’ votes worthless or causing certain election participants to gain additional votes or have their votes reduced. Consequently, Somantri was sentenced to nine months of imprisonment and a fine of five million rupiahs.

According to Article 372 paragraph (2) of the Election Law, the election violation Somantri had committed has led to ballot boxes being opened and vote counting not being conducted as prescribed by the regulations, by casting ballots twice at TPS 15 in Mentengsari Village, as stated in the district court’s decision. This action has also resulted in the damage of more than one ballot already used by voters, rendering those ballots invalid. Therefore, the Court believes that the electoral process, which has been compromised by Somantri’s criminal actions, must be restored to ensure the purity of the voters’ votes. There is no doubt for the Court to order a revote at TPS 15 in Mentengsari Village.

Meanwhile, according to the Court, the incidents that had occurred at TPS 12, 13, 14, and 16 in Mentengsari Village, where mandate witnesses had been improperly sent home, thereby unable to witness the vote recapitulation process, violated established provisions and the Election Law. Therefore, in order to ensure and protect the constitutional right to vote and uphold the democratic principles of elections based on the principles of direct, public, free, confidential, honest, and fair election, the Court deemed it necessary to recount the votes at those polling stations.

Based on the aforementioned legal considerations, the Court stated that the Petitioner’s petition as it pertains to the vote acquisition of the DPRD candidates for Cianjur Regency in electoral district 3 was legally grounded. However, since it is not entirely as petitioned by the Petitioner, the Petitioner’s petition was legally grounded in part.

Also read:

Gerindra Candidates Fight for Cianjur 3 Regency DPRD Seat

KPU Answers Gerindra Candidates’ Dispute for Cianjur 3

Witness Explains a Cianjur Village Head Voting on Dozens of Ballots

In his petition, the Petitioners argued the vote acquisition margin with another Gerindra candidate for DPRD election for Cianjur Regency in the electoral district of 3, Gugun Gunawan. He claimed to be disadvantaged because of the reduction of his votes by the KPU. The addition of votes for Gugun Gunawan for Cianjur Regency 3 DPRD occurred at polling station (TPS) 12, 13, 14, 15, and 16 of Mentengsari Village, Cikalongkulon Subdistrict. The ballots were cast outside the specified time by Mentengsari village chief Somantri and KPPS (polling station working committee) members. The Petitioner also alleged that ballot boxes had been improperly opened at the aforementioned polling stations. According to the Petitioner, there has been a violation of Article 327 paragraph (2) letter a of the Election Law.

Author              : Mimi Kartika
Editor                : Lulu Anjarsari P.
PR                    : Fauzan Febriyan
Translator         : Intana Selvira Fauzi/Fuad Subhan, Yuniar W.

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.

Thursday, June 06, 2024 | 09:56 WIB 39