Articles about voting issues in the Republic of Indonesia.

Indonesia: Election Commission to invite foreign observers to monitor Jakarta poll | Asian Correspondent

Indonesia’s General Elections Commission (KPU) says it will invite representatives of election commissions from across Southeast Asia and international NGOs that focus on the electoral process to observe the Jakarta gubernatorial election next month. According to Jakarta Post, the KPU will host its “Election Visit” program for the poll on Feb 15 and give observers a chance to monitor the vote. KPU commissioner Sigit Pamungkas said the program to be held at the KPU office in Central Jakarta from Feb 13 to 16 is aimed at introducing Indonesia’s election system to other countries. “We will invite the participants to monitor polling stations across Jakarta on election day. They will hopefully get an idea about the electoral process in Indonesia,” Sigit told Jakarta Post. “Apart from observing our elections, they could also share how elections are run in their respective countries,” he added.

Full Article: Indonesia: Election Commission to invite foreign observers to monitor Jakarta poll - Asian Correspondent.

Indonesia: Ballots for Jakarta election have been printed: Election commission | The Jakarta Post

The Jakarta General Elections Commission (KPU Jakarta) said on Thursday the ballot papers for the Feb. 15 gubernatorial election had finished being printed. The total number of ballot papers printed reached 7,292,619, which included 7,108,589 ballots for the fixed-voters list (DPT), an additional 2.5 percent of ballots for each polling station and an extra 2,000 for reserve.  KPU Jakarta head Sumarno said that the ballots, which were printed by PT Adi Perkasa, in Makassar, South Sulawesi, a company which earlier won the printing tender, were still on their way via sea freight to KPU Jakarta. 

Full Article: Ballots for Jakarta election have been printed: Election commission - City - The Jakarta Post.

Indonesia: Military eyes voting rights after 2024 | The Jakarta Post

The Indonesian Military (TNI) has once again expressed its hope to regain the right to vote in elections, saying that all regulations related to the military’s political rights should be evaluated by 2024. Speaking to members of the House of Representatives’ special committee on the election bill on Tuesday, TNI chief Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo said the military should get their voting rights after 2024 as the country would hold regional, legislative and presidential elections that year. “There will be three elections at the same time in 2024. It’s a crucial year. It will need more attention. So 2024 will be the right time to evaluate [the regulations on TNI’s voting rights],” Gatot said.

Full Article: Indonesian military eyes voting rights after 2024 - Wed, December 14 2016 - The Jakarta Post.

Indonesia: Millions of people may lose voting rights | The Jakarta Post

Millions of people could lose their voting rights in the upcoming regional elections in February as the government and the House of Representatives insist that they have electronic identification cards (e-KTPs) to be eligible to vote. As of Wednesday, the Home Ministry reported that 163 million people nationwide had already registered for e-KTPs. However, the remaining 19 million people have yet to obtain the cards. Many across the country are complaining about the shortage of blangko — blank cards used to create e-KTPs consisting of seven layers and chips. Some of them also said that many registration machines in the districts are broken.

Full Article: Millions of people may lose voting rights - The Jakarta Post.

Indonesia: Government plans e-voting for 2019 presidential elections | GovInsider

The Indonesian Government is looking at electronic voting for the 2019 presidential and legislative elections. The plan is being discussed by ministries under the Coordinating Minister for Politics, Legal and Security, revealed Soedarmo, director general of politics and general administration. The government is yet to make a final decision, however. Digital voting will help eliminate fraud and will return voting results within minutes, he said, according to the Jakarta Globe. Over 700 cases of election fraud were received by the constitution court during the 2014 elections. Most cases were rejected due to lack of evidence.

Full Article: Indonesia plans e-voting for 2019 presidential elections | GovInsider.

Indonesia: E-Voting Touted for 2019 Election | Jakarta Globe

Measures to introduce e-voting for the 2019 presidential and legislative elections are being considered by some in the government, an official said on Monday (29/08). Soedarmo, director general of politics and general government at the Home Affairs Ministry, said the plan had been discussed between several ministries under the Coordinating Minister for Politics, Legal and Security.  Speaking in Jakarta on Monday morning, Soedarmo tipped implementation for the 2019 election, but noted the government is yet to make a decision.

Full Article: E-Voting Touted for 2019 Election | Jakarta Globe.

Indonesia: West Papua: UN must supervise vote on independence, says coalition | The Guardian

The United Nations must pass a resolution for an internationally supervised vote for independence in West Papua, global parliamentarians and independence advocates have said. In a meeting in London on Tuesday, the West Papuan independence leader, Benny Wenda, will join parliamentarians, lawyers and humanitarians from the UK and the Pacific region to demand the United Nations pass a resolution for an independence referendum, in order to make up for its “mistake” in allowing Indonesia to take control almost 50 years ago. Indonesia warns other countries to respect its sovereignty over Papua. West Papuans are the indigenous people of a region on the Western half of an island shared with Papua New Guinea. Formerly under Dutch colonisation, Indonesia took temporary control of West Papua under a UN–backed treaty in 1963. It later gained complete rule through a UN-sanctioned but discredited ballot in 1969, in which just a little over 1000 Indonesian-picked West Papuan leaders representatives cast votes under threat of violence.

Full Article: West Papua: UN must supervise vote on independence, says coalition | World news | The Guardian.

Indonesia: Voters with disabilities want greater access | The Jakarta Post

Boy Tonggor Siahaan has cast his vote in every election since he was in high school. The 46-year-old has not missed a single legislative, presidential or regional election. … Boy was born with deformities to both of his arms. “I was forced to use my feet. I punch a hole by holding the nail with my feet,” he said. Boy, however, considered himself lucky with his still-functioning arms. “What about those who don’t have limbs at all?” he said. Cases like Boy’s were documented in a study conducted by the General Election Network for Disability Access (AGENDA), a consortium of civil society organizations and disabled people’s organizations across Southeast Asia. The study was aimed at improving access for disabled people to meet their political rights.

Full Article: Voters with disabilities want greater access | The Jakarta Post.

Indonesia: Calls mount for e-elections with available technology | The Jakarta Post

More people are calling for the implementation of an electronic voting system (e-voting) in next year’s concurrent regional elections. The Agency for Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT) said on Wednesday that holding electronic-based elections (e-elections) was actually feasible and that they could begin as soon as next year. “If the General Elections Commission [KPU] gives the green light, e-elections can start [in 2015],” BPPT researcher and former chief Marzan Aziz Iskandar said during a discussion on e-voting at the agency’s headquarters in Jakarta. He said that the BPPT had conducted research on the feasibility of e-elections. “The research and the development [of the technology for e-elections] is complete and the needed equipment is available,” Marzan said. He said that the technology had been demonstrated and tested during some gubernatorial elections. “We have already used the technology in some village head elections,” said Marzan.

Full Article: Calls mount for e-elections with available technology | The Jakarta Post.

Indonesia: Little Chance Seen in Overturning New Indonesia Election Law | Wall Street Journal

Allies of President-elect Joko Widodo are working to overturn a new law that ends direct regional elections in Indonesia, a battle that will require a Constitutional Court decision to succeed soon. Lawmakers on Friday passed a law that ends the world’s third-largest democracy’s nine-year experiment with direct elections for mayors, governors and others. The law empowers elected regional councils to appoint these leaders instead. Indonesia’s presidency will still be chosen in direct elections by voters every five years. The legislative vote was won by a coalition of parties who opposed Mr. Widodo in Indonesia’s presidential election this year. The coalition was led by the party of Prabowo Subianto, a former army general in the era of authoritarian ruler Suharto who lost a hard-fought election against Mr. Widodo in July. Mr. Subianto’s allies argued that elections are too expensive in the sprawling nation of 250 million, among other things.

Full Article: Little Chance Seen in Overturning New Indonesia Election Law - WSJ.

Indonesia: How Indonesians lost their direct local voting rights | Rappler

While most Indonesians were sleeping in the early hours of Friday, September 26, their elected representatives dismantled a cornerstone of the country’s democracy. After a politicized plenary debate that lasted more than 10 hours, the House of Representatives voted 226-135 to pass the controversial Regional Elections Bill (RUU Pilkada). Indonesians will now no longer be able to directly vote for their governors, mayors and district heads – a stunning reversal for one of the most widely praised emerging democracies in the world. This comes just two months after Indonesia voted as president Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, a furniture businessman who would not have become Solo mayor or Jakarta governor if not for direct local elections.

Full Article: How Indonesians lost their direct local voting rights.

Indonesia: Right to directly elect governors lost in Indonesia | CNN

Indonesia’s parliament voted on Friday to do away with direct local elections in a move that critics say is a huge step backward for the country’s fledgling democracy. Proponents of the law change, to scrap direct elections for mayors and governors, had argued local elections had proven too costly, and were prone to conflict and corruption. The bill was backed by the coalition behind losing presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto. But critics disagreed, and questioned the timing of the bill, first proposed in 2012, just two months after the election of Joko Widodo. Titi Anggraini, director of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem), said that many were upset by the law change. “I feel so disappointed. It shows how strong the opponents to democracy are. We are facing the biggest enemy of democracy.”

Full Article: Indonesians lose right to directly elect governors -

Indonesia: Decade of Direct Local Elections Threatened | Bloomberg

Indonesia’s incoming president began his political ascent as a mayor in a system of local elections. The parties of the candidate he beat in July will try to change the law next week to prevent that happening again. Lawmakers will vote Sept. 25 on a bill to revise a 2004 law on regional government that enabled direct elections. The draft, seen by Bloomberg News, would turn the clock back to a system of local assemblies choosing regional leaders that was created after the downfall of the late dictator Suharto. The vote in parliament, where parties on the losing side of the presidential ballot now hold 75 percent of seats, poses a test for the world’s third-largest democracy and President-elect Joko Widodo, who got his start as mayor of the city of Solo. The bill, opposed by Widodo and outgoing President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, is sponsored by the coalition of losing candidate Prabowo Subianto and may mark a reversal of the shift in power to the regions that began in 2001.

Full Article: Indonesia’s Decade of Direct Local Elections Threatened - Bloomberg.

Indonesia: Direct Elections Are OK, Says Indonesian President | Wall Street Journal

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono signaled his support for maintaining direct local elections in an interview published on YouTube Sunday, with debate heating up over a bill aimed at giving local assemblies the power to select mayors, governors and district heads. In the video posted on Suara Demokrat or Democratic Voices, a YouTube channel dedicated to Mr. Yudhoyono’s Democratic Party, he said people have grown accustomed to direct elections — a system that was first implemented in the young democracy in 2005. If people considered the current system a product of democratic reform, he said, “[certainly] we have to keep and maintain direct local elections, as well as the direct presidential election.”

Full Article: Direct Elections Are OK, Says Indonesian President - Southeast Asia Real Time - WSJ.

Indonesia: Prabowo revenge? New bill puts voting rights at risk | Rappler

After losing in the July 9 presidential elections, as well as in subsequent attempts to challenge its results, Prabowo Subianto and his allies have taken the battle to the legislature. This time, it’s not the presidency at stake, but the right of Indonesians to directly elect their governors, mayors and district heads. A committee in the outgoing House of Representatives (DPR) – which will end its term on September 30 – is currently deliberating a Regional Elections Bill (RUU Pilkada) that seeks to have these regional executive leaders be chosen by the local legislature (DPRD). This was the way it used to be, until post-Suharto era reforms led to Indonesians being able to directly vote for them for the first time in 2005. The controversial bill’s proponents tout the budget savings that could be made if Indonesia does away with the costly direct elections, which are held separately by each province. They also say indirect elections through the DPRD reduces the likelihood of election-related violence and “money politics”. Those against it – more than 80% of Indonesians according to a recent survey by the Indonesian Survey Circle – decry the threat to democracy and point out it’s unlikely “money politics” would actually decline. But arguments on the merits of either system aside, the issue here, really, is politics.

Full Article: Prabowo revenge? New bill puts voting rights at risk.

Indonesia: Indonesia’s highest court to decide on election challenge | Reuters

Indonesia’s highest court is widely expected on Thursday to uphold last month’s hotly contested presidential election, paving the way for Joko Widodo to take over as leader of the world’s third largest democracy. Losing candidate Prabowo Subianto has asked the Constitutional Court to overturn the election result, saying the vote was tainted by mass fraud. The verdict, expected at around 2 p.m. (0300 EST), cannot be appealed. The case is widely seen as a face-saving gesture and has been a common course of action in previous elections. The court has never overturned the result of a presidential election.

Full Article: Indonesia's highest court to decide on election challenge | Reuters.

Indonesia: Court rejects election loser’s appeal | The Washington Post

Indonesia’s top court on Thursday rejected an appeal by the losing candidate in last month’s presidential election over alleged voting irregularities, removing any uncertainty around the victory of Jakarta Gov. Joko Widodo. Prabowo Subianto, a former general with links to the regime of ex-dictator Suharto, had alleged massive fraud in the July 9 polls and filed a complaint in the Constitutional Court. He presented evidence and witness testimony for his claim, but all nine judges at the court ruled it was groundless. “The ruling is final and binding, but does not necessarily reflect truth or justice,” Tantowi Yahya, a spokesman for a coalition of political parties supporting Subianto, told a news conference. The verdict means that Widodo, a former furniture exporter who stands out among Indonesia’s political elite for his humble upbringing and lifestyle, can press ahead with preparing to take over the government of the world’s fourth most populous nation, a regional economic powerhouse.

Full Article: Indonesian court rejects election loser’s appeal - The Washington Post.

Indonesia: Court Expected to Clear Vote Results | Wall Street Journal

The final element of uncertainty around Joko Widodo’s election to Indonesia’s presidency is set to clear later Thursday, freeing him to focus on an economy in dire need of reinvention. The country’s Constitutional Court is widely expected to strike down a challenge by Prabowo Subianto, a former army general who ran against Mr. Widodo in July elections and who had alleged voting irregularities. Its decision cannot be appealed. Since hearings to Mr. Subianto’s challenge began earlier this month, his supporters have held rallies in front of the court. Ahead of Thursday’s decision, police fired tear gas and used water cannons on a crowd of thousands of protesters in downtown Jakarta in an attempt to keep them away from the court.

Full Article: Indonesia Court Expected to Clear Vote Results - WSJ.

Indonesia: Prabowo’s court move backfires | The Jakarta Post

The presidential election dispute hearing at the Constitutional Court took an unexpected turn on Thursday as one of the witnesses testified on the alleged involvement of local government heads in mobilizing votes for losing presidential ticket Prabowo Subianto-Hatta Rajasa in Papua. Nabire Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Tagor Hutapea testified via video link that Dogiyai Regent Thomas Tigi had attempted to interfere with vote tabulation by persuading members of the District Election Committee (PPD) to rig the vote in favor of the Prabowo-Hatta ticket. “During that time, the Dogiyai General Elections Commission [KPUD] chairman, Didimus, told them [the PPD] that if they wanted money, then they could get it from the regent. But the votes must be diverted toward the Prabowo-Hatta ticket,” he said.

Full Article: Prabowo’s court move backfires | The Jakarta Post.

Indonesia: Election Dispute In the Hands of These Nine Judges | Wall Street Journal

Indonesia’s Constitutional Court will soon issue a decision on a legal challenge by presidential contender Prabowo Subianto to overturn the results of last month’s election, in which Jakarta Gov. Joko Widodo was declared the winner. It will be one of the biggest decisions in the history of Indonesia’s young democracy, and it will be left to the court’s nine judges. The justices are appointed by the House of Representatives, the president and the Supreme Court, each of which is entitled to appoint three justices to serve five-year terms at two term limits. Exception lies with the chief justice, who is elected by the other court judges to serve a term of only 2.5 years. In a court whose responsibilities include dissolving political parties and resolving disputes over election results, the judges are a mixed group. Some have links to political groupings that have supported Mr. Subianto. Others are career judges, some with backgrounds in Islamic law. 

Full Article: Indonesian Election Dispute In the Hands of These Nine Judges - Southeast Asia Real Time - WSJ.