The Biggest Problem is Trust to Parliament, not How Mayor/Governor Elected
Last night, the House of Parliament of Indonesia (ironically, most of them whom Indonesian people really really distrust to) decided that the election of governor and city mayor will be held not by people (direct election) anymore, but will be held *exclusively* by each region’s house of parliament. The direct election model has been held since 2004, marked the new Era (unfortunately, nothing really new in this country since then) of Direct Democracy. But, it also marked the new era where money politics happened and massively done by those who want to be elected (any elections, legislative or executive election)
The argument the supporters of this system presented is : Indonesian people is not mature enough to hold direct election, that based on our constitution, we stand on “representative of people” models (parliament) so that our (or maybe their own political parties only?) opinion and aspiration will be fulfilled by House of Parliament. Even, they argued that the political cost of direct election was huge, created a massive and huge inefficiency, and created a culture of money politics (sadly enough, the one who offered money is the one who participated in elections right? It’s not like we the people asked them for money, but really, they offered us money in order to get elected.)
On the other hand, the supporters of Direct Election said that in this era of Democracy, after bloody struggle to overcome New Order Regime, Direct Election is the manifestation of ‘Vox Populi Vox Dei’. The voice of the people is the voice of God. Our people was already getting used to Direct Election since 10 years ago (our current President got elected by almost 60% of people too, in 2009 election). The upside of direct election is nowadays, smart, young, and clean people got the chance to enter the politics without ‘political contract’ with parties, as long as they are backed by people. Then, we can see talented and dedicated people like Mr. Ahok (Jakarta), Mr. Ridwan Kamil (Bandung), Mr. Ganjar Pranowo (Central Java), Mrs Risma (Surabaya), etc now got elected and worked really hard to make sure their regions/cities provide best services to its people. Eliminating direct election will be a betrayal to people’s voice. Besides, it will only bring advantage to political parties which ruling a region/city in regional election. They will be much easier to place their own best (according to parties, of course) cadre to become the ruler and control them from the back of the screen.
Personally, I supported direct election model since I think our House of Parliament (at any levels, from cities to national) does not have any significant contribution. I rarely known well many of them, just some ‘celebrity’ politicians with unimportant comments in media. Or maybe photos of them overslept while attending meeting. Yeah, that’s what I think about each time i hear DPRD (city/regional parliament) or DPR (national parliament). Even worse, I also have an image of them as corruptors nest (ooppss) since many of them got jailed because of many cases, like corruption, gratification. The worst, they even not felt guilty at all after being caught. They said ‘It’s a test from God’ with smile. So, being caught on corruption case is God’s test, yeah?
Most of all, any models of election will bring the positives and negatives. Even election by House of Parliament will reduce the complexity of distribution of election stuffs and cost, and will reduce the legal dispute in Mahkamah Konstitusi (I try so hard to think positively) so that the new elected leader will be able to directly form the new government.
But, I can see one of the most important point from this case.
We are lack of trust to Parliament Members. We don’t trust them to elect our leader. We don’t want them to choose for us, because we know they are not quite trustworthy. So we choose to directly choose our next leaders. We refuse to hand over our rights to a bunch of people which we doubt their credibilites.
Is it true?
It’s true that even in the ‘most democracy country’ in the world like USA, the president is not elected by people directly. This is what I get from searching in Wikipedia:
The election of the President and the Vice President of the United States is an indirect vote in which citizens cast ballots for a slate of members of the U.S. Electoral College; these electors in turn directly elect thePresident and Vice President. Presidential elections occur quadrennially (the count beginning with the year 1792) on Election Day, the Tuesday between November 2 and 8, coinciding with the general elections of various other federal, states and local races. The most recent was the 2012 election, held on November 6. The next election will be the 2016 election, which will be held on November 8, 2016.
The differences is, Americans trust (not all of them, maybe?) their representatives to choose the best among 2 candidates. So, they don’t protest why they cannot choose their leader.
Yes, I do really think that the root of this problem is the trust. And, as long as we don’t see the credibility from House of Parliament in the future, we will continue to distrust them. We will prefer to burn a lot of ‘cost’ (time, money, any resource we have) to make sure we choose the right one.
Any opinions? 🙂