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Realize Peaceful Elections Without Hoaxes and Hate Speech

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By : Arsenio Bagas Pamungkas )*

The general election (Pemilu) is a democratic party which is the great desire of the Indonesian nation, through elections, the people have the right to choose prospective leaders as well as members of the DPR who will sit in parliament. Therefore it is very important for every element of society to realize peaceful elections, without hate speech and free from hoax narratives.

Political parties, and election stakeholders have a responsibility to provide political education for the people. In particular, educating the public about the importance of elections that are clean from issues of identity politics, the politicization of SARA, hoaxes and hate speech.

Peaceful elections, without hoaxes and hate speech, are important in order to realize elections with integrity. Elections are also an instrument as well as a concrete manifestation of democracy. In the thoughts of Bung Hatta, the proclamator and founder of the Indonesian nation, democracy in Indonesia is different from western-style democracy.

People’s sovereignty in the west only occurs in the political realm, while in Indonesia people’s sovereignty also covers the social and economic fields. Hatta deemed this distinction necessary, because democracy in the West was carried out within the context of individualism, while economic life was controlled by capitalists who were still classified as a minority.

Meanwhile, political elites, community leaders, and religious leaders also have a role to play so that there is no election residue that creates hatred so that it can become a big loss for the nation.

Deputy Chairperson of the Golkar Party DPP Nurdin Halid said that not a single political elite had the thought of not creating peaceful and dignified elections.

Executive Director of Charta Politika Yunarto Wijaya added that the success of the 2024 election is not just a qualitative indicator. The quality of the democratic party must also be considered.

Meanwhile, KPU Chairman Hasyim Asy’ari, in his report ensured that the 2024 Simultaneous Elections would be held on time according to the five-year rule. During this national consolidation, the KPU will carry out several activities during the election stages, including verification of political parties, preparations for updating voter lists, arrangement of electoral districts for Regency/Municipal DPRDs, Formation of ad hoc bodies for election committees at the sub-district level, as well as preparations for updating voter lists.

On a different occasion, the Indonesian Journalists Association (PWI) Lampung, stated its readiness to oversee the stages of the upcoming 2024 election. This was stated by Wirahadikusumah when receiving an audience from the General Election Commission (KPU) Lampung at Balai Wartawan Hi. Solfian.

In front of Lampung KPU members, PWI Lampung is committed to sticking to independence and being neutral in the 2024 election.

PWI Lampung is also ready to collaborate with KPU Lampung, if needed to socialize the stages of the 2024 election. Both in terms of news, discussions and so on.

Meanwhile, Lampung KPU chairman Erwan Bustami also appreciated PWI Lampung for being ready to oversee the upcoming 2024 elections. According to him, it is very important for KPU Lampung to cooperate with related stakeholders, including KPU in socializing the election stages.

Moreover, the media is one of the four pillars of nationality, and this election stage requires socialization so that the information is properly conveyed to the public. Collaboration between the KPU and PWI Lampung is of course very much needed to ward off hoax narratives or untrue news.

On different occasions, the Ministry of Home Affairs invites all parties to present peaceful and pleasant elections. The Director General for Politics and Public Administration (Polpum) of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Bahtiar, conveyed this invitation while representing the Minister of Home Affairs (Mendagri) at the 2022 Bawaslu National Consolidation Meeting at the Bidakara Hotel on 17 December 2022.

Bahtiar also conveyed to Bawaslu that it continues to finalize its readiness to carry out its duties according to the mandate of Law Number 7 of 2017 concerning Elections.

In contests such as presidential or regional elections, conflicts between candidates still occur frequently and this involves both supporters in the real world, such as intimidation by sympathizers because of different shirts, as well as intimidation in cyberspace which is often colored by hoax news and efforts to delegitimize the KPU as an independent institution.

The black campaign model is also often found in every democratic party. Starting from the politicization of mosques to the spread of hate speech, as well as hoax news that is widely coloring the virtual world.

These problems are indeed not easy to avoid, especially in terms of the politicization of religion where religious sentiment is a topic that is easily fried to be spread to the public.

Elections are actually a means to select credible candidates for leaders. That way, the quality of prospective leaders is largely determined by the election process.

Therefore, it is important for the community to elect a candidate for a leader who is seen as credible, of course the community cannot abstain, because this will only benefit candidates who are not credible.

Peaceful elections, without hoaxes and without hate speech are a form of democratic culture that must be upheld. Don’t let political contestation become an arena for mutual hatred.

)* The author is a contributor to Persada Institute

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