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Academics Call for the Importance of Peaceful Elections

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By : Mayang Dwi Andaru )*

The leaders of several well-known universities in the Special Region of Yogyakarta (DIY) are united in a joint call to ensure that the 2024 General Election (Pemilu) takes place in a peaceful atmosphere. This call was delivered with enthusiasm at Gadjah Mada University (UGM) Hall, illustrating the commitment of leading academics in maintaining the integrity and quality of democracy in Indonesia.

In a meeting involving leaders from Gadjah Mada University (UGM), Sanata Dharma University (USD), Indonesian Islamic University (UII), Sunan Kalijaga State Islamic University (UIN), Veterans National Development University (UPN), Atmajaya University Yogyakarta (UAJY ), College of Village Community Development, as well as Yogyakarta State University (UNY), the Chancellor of UGM, Ova Emilia, emphasized that the 2024 Election must be jointly supervised to ensure its smooth running in accordance with democratic principles.

The upcoming 2024 simultaneous general elections are considered a crucial moment on the national agenda, needing to be supervised together so that they run in accordance with democratic principles and have constitutional legitimacy. This was stated firmly by Ova at Balairung on Friday, November 24 2023. In her statement, Ova emphasized the need for collective involvement to ensure the integrity and legality of the election in accordance with democratic rules.

According to him, elections have an important meaning in maintaining state administration and maintaining democratic governance in order to realize the welfare of all Indonesian people. Moreover, the 2024 election is considered even more crucial considering that Indonesia is still a reference for a democratic system amidst extreme setbacks in several countries.

Not only as a university leader, but the Chancellor of the Yogyakarta Veterans National Development University (UPNY), Mohammad Irhas Effendi, highlighted the urgency of the neutrality of academic people. Irhas Effendi emphasized that in the university environment, neutrality must be maintained seriously. 

He also spoke to all levels of society in Indonesia to ensure that the implementation of elections continues to prioritize the principles of honesty, justice, smoothness, openness, confidentiality and freedom. This was expressed as a joint commitment from academics to the Indonesian people.

Meanwhile, the Chancellor of Atma Jaya University Yogyakarta (UAJY), Sri Nurhartanto, added that higher education institutions must always remind all parties of the importance of maintaining the implementation of elections in a peaceful atmosphere. Sri Nurhartanto emphasized that especially parties in higher education must actively remind the public and all related elements to ensure that the elections take place in a conducive, peaceful, neutral manner and without excessive friction.

In an effort to encourage a peaceful, dignified and quality campaign, the university chancellors in DIY formulated five important points. First, they invite all parties to create a substantive and quality campaign with dynamic and constructive dialogue. It is hoped that this dialogue can build consensus regarding strategic matters for the good and progress of Indonesia.

Second, academics emphasize the importance of mature attitudes, thinking and political maturity of leaders and candidates in dealing with differences and diversity of views as a normal reality in democratic events. The third point denounces destructive attitudes, arbitrary actions and violent behavior that can damage and divide the components of the nation.

Fourth, the chancellors invited all parties involved in the election to comply with applicable regulations and laws, maintain integrity, honesty, be fair, and commit together to realize dignified and credible elections. This is considered the main key in maintaining quality democracy.

Fifth, Yogyakarta academics invite all components of civil society, including academics, journalists, religious leaders, non-governmental organizations and other concerned parties, to actively participate in making the elections a success as a national agenda. It is hoped that this participation can be carried out in an educational, enlightening and critical manner as a form of shared responsibility.

Academics in DIY concluded that this call was not merely rhetorical discourse, but a real commitment to maintaining the sustainability of democracy in Indonesia. They invite all elements of society to work together to maintain the integrity and quality of democracy, ensuring that the 2024 election becomes a positive milestone in the history of Indonesia’s democratic journey.

The final message carried by these university leaders is that the success of elections does not only lie in the final results announced, but also in the process being fair, transparent and peaceful. Through the proposed concrete steps, they ensure that all parties, from leaders to the general public, have an important role in building a strong and sustainable democracy.

The importance of the participation of every element of society, especially academics, is reflected in the appeal made. Now, it’s time to absorb and implement the values ​​contained in their message. The success of elections depends not only on efficient and fair implementation, but also on the active participation of the community in maintaining a peaceful atmosphere and supporting the democratic process.

All of us, as part of society, have an important role in maintaining and strengthening the foundations of our democracy. Let us together, with full responsibility, carry out the election process for the sake of a better future for Indonesia.

)* The author is a contributor to the Sadawira Utama Institute

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