Academics: The Cohabitation Article of the National Criminal Code Forms Respect for Indonesian Values
Semarang — Academics stated that the Article on Cohabitation in the National Criminal Code (KUHP) is a form of respect for Indonesian values while protecting the private space of society, and has absolutely no effect on foreign tourist arrivals and investment in Indonesia.
During the National Criminal Code socialization event held by the Indonesian Criminal Law and Criminology Society (Mahupiki) at the Patra Hotel Semarang, Central Java on Wednesday (1/2/2023), Secretary General Mahupiki, Dr. Ahmad Sofyan hopes that all levels of society fully understand the substance of the new Criminal Code.
In the same vein, the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at Unnes Semarang, Prof. Dr. Zaenuri Mastur in his speech also expressed his happiness, considering that Semarang was one of the areas where the socialization of the Criminal Code was held.
Professor of Criminal Law at the University of Indonesia (UI), Prof. Topo Santoso, in his presentation, revealed that one of the differences between the new or national Criminal Code and the old Criminal Code or Wetboek van Strafrecht (WvS) is that there has been a discussion along with academic texts in chapters or books on criminal acts, criminal responsibility, and criminal and sentencing.
“In the national Criminal Code, some are similar to the old Criminal Code, but one of the new ones is the emergence of discussion of criminal acts using intermediary tools that did not exist before,” he said.
Meanwhile, according to him, the article related to customary law or living law in the National Criminal Code is a form of recognition and respect for customary law (delik adat) that is still alive in society.
“Customary law applies where the law lives and as long as it is not regulated in this Criminal Code and is in accordance with the values of Pancasila, the 1945 Constitution, human rights and general legal principles that are recognized by the people of nations,” explained Prof. Topo.
Furthermore, Prof. Topo also appealed to the public to be able to read or understand beforehand the article they wanted to criticize.
Meanwhile, other sources, namely Academics from the Faculty of Law, University of Indonesia (UI), Prof. Harkristuti Harkrisnowo explained about several actual issues that are still being discussed in the National Criminal Code.
“These issues, among others related to living law, abortion, contraception, adultery, cohabitation, obscenity, crimes against religion or belief, and crimes related to freedom of expression,” explained Prof. Harkristuti.
According to him, the Cohabitation Article is able to protect the private space of the community because it is in the type of complaint offense.
“This is to limit so that not everyone makes complaints. The purpose of the article on adultery and cohabitation is to respect Indonesian values and the institution of marriage as referred to in Law no. 1 of 1974, while continuing to protect the private space of the people,” he said.
Furthermore, Prof. Harkristuti also stated that the National Criminal Code does not limit freedom of expression and opinion, because in the elucidation of the article it has been stated that criticism, demonstrations and different opinions cannot be punished.
“The purpose of regulating this matter in Article 218 of the Criminal Code is to protect the dignity of the President as head of state and head of government, whose regulation also applies to insulting heads of friendly countries,” said the FH UI academic.
Meanwhile, Professor of Krisnadwipayana University, Prof. Indriyanto Seno Adji explained that criminal acts in general are very dynamic following global, regional and national developments and dynamics. Therefore the need for legal reform, especially criminal law in Indonesia through this national Criminal Code.
Prof. Indriyanto regretted that some parties’ understanding of the national Criminal Code was not in depth, complete and detailed.
“Low understanding and easy acceptance of this issue has led to public miscommunication and misinformation regarding the full understanding of the substance of the articles regulated in the Criminal Code,” he concluded.