DEMOCRATIC DEMOCRACY AND ELECTION
by Tim FH Unja
The series of stages of carrying out a democratic party in Indonesia has begun. This was marked by the agreement of the KPU Regulation (PKPU) regarding the stages of the 2019 Election by the KPU and the House of Representatives Commission II in a joint meeting at the DPR building some time ago. One of the important points in PKPU stated that the stages of the 2019 election began on October 3, 2017 with the first agenda of registration of political parties participating in the election.
Regarding this matter, it is necessary to be a common understanding that basically the election is a political necessity to form a democratic government. Even for the virtues of a democratic country, elections are considered a symbol as well as a benchmark from democracy itself. This is realized because the election is a concrete manifestation of the implementation of democracy. In other words, elections are a logical consequence of a democratic system.
However, what needs to be known is that although the election is a concrete manifestation of the implementation of democracy, it is not always democratic elections. Therefore, elections as one aspect of democracy must also be held democratically. Democratic elections are not just symbols, but democratic elections must be competitive, periodic, inclusive and definitive (Muktie Fadjar: 2003)
There are at least three things that can be used as a measure to assess whether the election is held democratically or not, 1) whether or not there is recognition, protection and fertilization of human rights; 2) there is fair competition from election participants; 3) public trust in the election that results in a legitimate government. These three things become a unity that cannot be separated to realize democratic elections in a country that upholds democratic values.
First, recognition, protection and fertilization of human rights. This basically relates to the process of nominating election participants. Elections can be said to be democratic if during the process of nominating election participants, it provides equal opportunities for every citizen to nominate himself as a participant in the general election. It has been expressly regulated in the law that the election participants of the President and Vice President are individuals carried by political parties or joint political parties, DPR and DPRD election participants are political parties, DPD election participants are individuals who have fulfilled the requirements, and election participants regional heads are individuals who come from political parties or independent candidates.
Second, there is fair competition among election participants. This is closely related to the implementation of the election itself. The implementation of democratic elections is not enough if it only provides equal opportunities for every citizen to nominate himself as an election participant. The same opportunity in the case of the nomination must also be accompanied by equal opportunities to later become the winner of the election itself. That is the reason why democratic elections are not only talking about the election being carried out directly or by representatives, but rather how each election participant has equal opportunities to become a winner in the election.
Third, the establishment of public trust in the elections that results in a legitimate government. Public trust in the election so as to produce a legitimate government will automatically be built when there are no violations and problems with the results of the election. Even if there is a possibility of election violations and election results disputes, it can be resolved democratically and proportionally through the legal mechanism so that elections remain legitimate. Regarding this matter, the Constitutional Court is present as a judicial institution that has the authority to decide in the first and final levels whose decisions are final to decide disputes concerning the results of general elections and regional head elections as contained in Article 24C of the third amendment to the 1945 Constitution of the Republic of Indonesia .
Realizing democratic elections is certainly not a simple matter. It takes not only a set of appropriate regulatory instruments in order to support the implementation of democratic elections. But the behavior of the election participants and managers is also important to realize this. Today, these two important things are still in a phase that is not ideal for realizing democratic elections. From the regulatory aspect, for example, recently the House of Representatives through the Election Law agreed on a presidential threshold of 20-25% which practically made the presidential election contest only be followed by political parties or a combination of political parties that reached that number. If we draw back to the size of democratic elections, of course this becomes a problem in realizing democratic elections themselves.
Not only that, the problem of other regulatory aspects is the emergence of a maximum threshold that must be met by the participants of the regional head election who wish to submit a regional election dispute to the Constitutional Court. This practically makes the Constitutional Court now return to the paradigm of the Calcutta Court, not the Constitutional Court, which has the duty as the guardian of constitution and the guardian of democracy. Again, this is a problem in the effort to realize democratic elections in Indonesia.