Maintain Neutrality for the Realization of a Peaceful 2024 Election
By : David Kiva Prambudi
All state apparatus, starting from the TNI, Polri and ASN, must continue to be committed to maintaining their neutrality. This is important so that elections can run safely and peacefully.
Neutrality during the 2024 elections is something that must be upheld by the State Civil Apparatus (ASN) in order to carry out clean, safe and peaceful elections. Of course ASN is not allowed to be involved in any activities that are practical politics.
The 2024 election is indeed getting closer, political parties have also begun to maneuver by lobbying each other to get votes and sympathy. The government has also made various regulations to limit the relationship between ASN and practical political activities in order to strengthen the existence of neutrality.
In order to maintain ASN neutrality, the government has issued a joint decree (SKB) regarding guidelines for fostering and supervising the neutrality of ASN employees in holding elections.
This refers to Law no. 5/2014 concerning ASN. The regulation states that ASN is prohibited from becoming a member and/or administrator of a political party. ASN is also mandated not to take sides from any form of influence and not to favor the interests of anyone.
The existence of civil servants who are not neutral during the 2024 elections will certainly be very detrimental to the state, government and society. Because if ASN is not neutral, the impact felt by ASN is precisely the government’s targets at the local level and at the national level will not be achieved properly.
Civil servants also need to pay attention to the potential for neutrality disturbances that can occur at each stage of the election. The potential for neutrality disturbances can occur before the implementation of the election stage, the registration stage for prospective regional head candidates, or at the stage after the determination of the elected region.
Tito Karnavian as the Minister of Home Affairs revealed that ASN is an important component of government to ensure the 2024 election takes place both at the national and regional levels.
Tito said ASNs should not be involved in practical politics, because ASNs are professionals who are the engine of government. He also understands that the political situation could heat up. However, ASN must remain in a professional position and not take sides with political contestants who will compete in elections or regional elections. Even though civil servants actually have the right to vote in every democratic party.
On a different occasion, Vice President Ma’ruf Amin emphatically said that the neutrality of ASN in elections is non-negotiable.
It should be noted, Neutrality is one of the principles governing the implementation of ASN policies and management. Neutral itself is defined as an impartial attitude.
The term neutrality of course needs to be understood by all civil servants. Basically, neutrality is not regulated to shackle the freedom of ASN in realizing their political aspirations, ASN are required to carry out their mandate as servants of the state who work solely for the welfare of the people, not a particular political group or party.
ASN also has the right to vote, but as long as he is still an ASN, his right to vote must not be disclosed to other people, just himself or herself let alone inviting other people to support what they support. ASNs have the right to be elected and if they want to be elected or run for regional elections, they must resign from ASN.
The impact caused by ASN’s non-neutrality will be very detrimental to the state, government and society. For example, services that are not optimal, placement of positions tends to be seen in elections and placements in PNS positions are filled by people who are not competent.
Previously, the results of a survey conducted by the State Civil Apparatus Commission (KASN) in 2018 showed that there were at least six causes for violations of ASN neutrality; First, weak sanctions. Second, the non-neutrality of ASN which is still considered normal. Third, the lack of integrity of ASN to act neutral. Fourth, there is intervention from the leadership, lack of understanding of regulations regarding neutrality. Fifth, there is a motive to get or maintain a position, material or project. Sixth, there is a family or kinship relationship with the candidate.
What needs to be realized is that the neutral attitude of ASN must be maintained as part of maintaining a conducive security climate in supporting regional development. Moreover, political conditions are predicted to heat up in 2024.
It is hoped that the neutrality of ASN as a public servant will always be well maintained. Don’t let this public service process become discriminatory in the election political season.
To realize this neutrality, the local government or related agencies could hold a socialization that discusses the importance of ASN neutrality in the 2024 election.
The socialization can also be closed with a joint declaration to be neutral in elections. So it is hoped that ASNs will have attitudes and insights about political rights and obligations which are expected to improve the quality of democracy in Indonesia.
ASN must be neutral towards all forms of practical politics, the political year that is projected to heat up should not make ASN not work professionally just because of different political views, so it is very important for ASN not to take sides from any form of influence and not to side with the interests whatever.
)* The author is a contributor to Yudistira Institute