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Prevent  Money Political Practices  to Realize Dignified Elections

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By : Rivka Mayangsari*)

Money politics  is still a threat in the implementation of the upcoming democratic party. Therefore, the participation of all parties, including the younger generation, is very necessary as the front guard in fighting this dirty practice of money politics.

The era of digitalization has had a big impact on political party campaigns. Money political practices are a concern. “In the past, we distributed basic necessities, now we distribute the balance to digital wallets,” said member of the Balikpapan General Election Commission (KPU) Legal and Supervision Division, Syahrul Karim.

Currently, money politics is difficult to find and reach, because many things already use digital systems. For example, electricity vouchers are distributed to the public, then include an invitation to vote for a particular political party. Even though this is prohibited, especially if it is done during the campaign’s quiet period. 

Head of the Center for Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis (PPATK), Ivan Yustiavanda, reminded the importance of anticipating misuse of technology through e-money and e-wallets in the political years 2023 and 2024. PPATK assesses that there is potential for money politics by using e-money and e-wallets. .

One of the things that makes the use of e-money and e-wallets vulnerable is because it is permissible to not carry out  know your customer or customer due diligence  on transactions of a certain amount, for example e-money for open loop and e-wallets without registration. The development of technology is also in line with the development of economic crimes with Information and Communication Technology (ICT) as an enabler.

One of the impacts felt in Indonesia is the increase in money laundering crimes originating from online gambling, business email compromise,  pig butchering  or online scams, such as romance scams and ransomware, robot trading, as well as potential money politics using e-money and e- wallets.

Previously, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) had emphasized that political parties (Parpol) were an important component in preventing money politics. Political parties are one of three important components for creating an intelligent political mechanism with integrity. Political parties should have an important role in political contestation in Indonesia. 

Political parties become the holders of the people’s vote which leads their cadres to sit in public positions, both executive and legislative. One of its duties and authorities is to create policies or laws that are closely related to the interests of the people.

The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) continues to strive to prevent the practice of abuse of authority in election contestations, one of which is by compiling Political Party Integrity System Guidelines (SIPP). In this way, political parties can implement anti-corruption steps and strategies for their cadres who will serve as regional heads.

Apart from that, money politics has also become a habit in society and is not an easy thing. To break the chain of money politics, not only requires integrity from politicians, but also requires efforts from people who have integrity in rejecting this practice.

Money politics is very dangerous because it is not about winning or losing contests, but rather destroying the mentality (morals) of citizens and destroying the mentality of state actors (leaders). Money politics is threatening, dangerous and a crime, so the dangers of money politics must be conveyed to the public. 

If people, especially the younger generation, are exposed to money politics, or even become part of criminal acts of election violations, then their hopes for a good future will also be tainted. Currently, the younger generation are first-time voters who have not been exposed to or contaminated by dirty political methods.

Socialization of monitoring the stages of the campaign is considered important in an effort to increase public awareness, especially the millennial generation and generation Z. Not only does it encourage their participation, but it also builds awareness about the importance of moral values ​​in preventing money politics which has become very prevalent in our society.

The public is advised to supervise each other and prevent the practice of money politics. If they find any suspicion of money politics, they must immediately report it to the Election Supervisor according to their level. This money politics usually occurs during the campaign period, calm, and before voting day.

If there are election organizers who are involved in money politics, we will definitely process them according to existing regulations. If proven, the sanction will be dishonorably discharged and could even result in imprisonment. For election organizers who give or receive bribes, the sentence is 4 years or a fine of IDR 48 million, as explained in Law No. 7 of 2017 concerning Elections.

Bawaslu must join hands with various interest groups such as the police, prosecutor’s office, government (central and regional), and the community. Everyone must work together because the dangers of money politics can only be handled if we work together.

The practice of money politics, similar to the smell of “farts”, is difficult to trace its origin but the effects of the smell are very disturbing. The general election process in Indonesia is supposed to be a means to change power honestly and fairly, but the reality is far from expectations.

Therefore, we need to consider money politics as a common threat. The big task of fighting this is not only on the election organizers such as the KPU and Bawaslu, but it is also the responsibility of the community to monitor, prevent and report money politics to Bawaslu.

Rejecting the practice of money politics and choosing leaders based on their integrity and commitment to honest and fair service is an important step. It’s time for all of us to unite against the influence of money politics so that elections can be freed from detrimental constraints.

*) Social and political observer

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