Election Body Fights Ex-Corruptors’ Nomination as Parliament Members | Muhammad Sarmuji

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Election Body Fights Ex-Corruptors’ Nomination as Parliament Members

Political parties will find it hard to not nominate their cadres who had been convicted for corruption as they may have served as ‘funding sources’.

Jakarta – Among the most crucial questions being tackled in Indonesia these weeks is whether an ex-prisoner from a corruption-related case can run for a parliament seat.

Amid talks on the pros and cons over the KPU regulation issue, the election body said on Saturday (26/5) that they would soon submit to the Ministry of Law Human Rights Affairs for ratification of its regulation that will prohibit former corruption inmates to become Parliament (DPR) members.

“We will go ahead (with our plan). We are still finalizing (the regulation text),” KPU commissioner Hasyim Asy’ari told Detik.com. Hopefully, they will submit the document today (28/5), he said.

KPU said that its regulation aims to protect the ‘common good’ of the Indonesian people. Meanwhile, those opposing the commission’s ruling argued that it revokes political rights of former corruption prisoners. They pointed to Law No. 7 Year 2017 on General Election, which states that any former convict who has ended his or her five-year jail sentence or more can become a DPR member provided that he or she makes public his or her ‘former prisoner’ status. Moreover, the election law does not specifically mention former corruption convicts.

Accordingly, lawmakers and others who oppose the KPU’s draft regulation advised the election body to revoke it and just let political parties to decide whether to accept former corruption convicts as their DPR member candidates. Disagreeing House members stressed that any political parties would commit suicide if they accept ex-corruptors as their move would put their supporters away. Those lawmakers reportedly came from PDI-P, Golkar, Gerindra, PAN, PKS, and PPP. In addition, Golkar deputy secretary general Sarmuji warned about possible law suits to be filed against KPU by those who claim that its regulation has no legal basis whatsoever.

Meanwhile, according to a Detik.com report, those supporting the KPU’s ruling included the Demokrat, PKB, Nasdem, and Hanura political parties.

Understandably, political parties will find it hard to not nominate their cadres who had served as their ‘funding sources’ in the past and are former corruption convicts. This is according to Titi Anggraeni, executive director of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem) as reported by Beritasatu.com.

Source: Global Indonesian Voices, 28 May 2018

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