I joined the First Commenter Club! of Mariuca. I will give away free linky love for the first commenter of each post. You're welcome to comment on the entries. If you're new here, you may want to subscribe to my RSS feed. Thanks for visiting!
| Comments | , ]

The open election campaign period has come to an end, and now we enter the cooling-off period. It’s time for voters to think and make an informed decision. The voters have to decide their choice on 9 April 2009.

The past three weeks of open campaigning proceeded peacefully. No blood was shed, and no skirmishes between supporters of political parties were reported. Reports have it that open campaigning this time was less festive and drew fewer crowds than in the previous elections. Many people came to the campaign rallies for the free ride, free meals and, most importantly, free entertainment by famous musicians and bands that they could otherwise not afford to attend.

These positive facts indicate that our people have gained a better political awareness than before, and are becoming more rational in their allegiance to political parties and leaders. The three weeks of open campaigning also showed us that only a handful of political parties – out of 38 parties (44 in Aceh) – made any significant impression on the people and made their voices heard. According to some surveys, less than 10 parties will pass the 2.5 percent legislative threshold to be able to send their representatives to the House of Representatives in Senayan. It’s good for our democracy, to streamline the number of parties and to make the governing more effective.

On this positive note, we use this opportunity to take stock of what remains to be done in the next few days to make our legislative elections another success story. The most pressing issue is the shoddy preparation for the April 9 balloting day. Elections commissions in some regencies and municipalities have asked for more ballots to replace what they claim are damaged ballots. Worse, some regencies have not received ballots altogether, including some in Maluku.

We hope the General Elections Commission (KPU) will prepare emergency measures in case the ballots do not reach certain areas on time. It should be flexible enough to move back the date of balloting day for those areas.

The voter lists are also problematic. While some parties have pointed to lists that feature “ghost” voters, some have also pointed out that many of their constituents are not on the official lists. We recognize the KPU has made several changes to the voter lists. However, as we don’t have a reliable national registry for our citizens, the existing voter lists can still create problems in the future, especially from the losing parties. The best way for the KPU to handle this issue of tampered voter lists is to report the results of the elections as transparently as possible, and show the public in a credible way that its system does not allow for any “ghost” voters to cast ballots.

The next issue is security. Although the three weeks of open campaigning were relatively peaceful – thanks to the police and political parties and their supporters – we need to raise the issue of the worsening security situation in Aceh.

Aceh needs special attention. A number of people have been shot dead, with most of the shootings reportedly related to the elections. Hatred and prejudice still run deep between members of the Indonesian Military and former rebels now governing the territory and contesting the elections through local parties.

We hope the police can improve the security situation ahead of the elections and on polling day, especially in Aceh, so that people can cast their ballots without any pressure or fear.

Good Luck to my brother who is one of the candidate for legislative elections and I always support Kampanye Damai Pemilu Indonesia 2009.

Related Posts by Categories

Widget by Hoctro | Jack Book

My Other Blog Life

Sign up for PayPal and start accepting credit card payments instantly.
Blog Advertising - Get Paid to Blog

Get paid To Promote at any Location