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Religious Figures Play a Role in Preventing Incitement and Provocation Ahead of the 2024 Election

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Jakarta – Election will be a very thrilling event. Not only because many people are waiting for who will be the next president of Indonesia? However, because of the many incitement of hatred that usually arise during the campaign period. Religious leaders must work together to monitor that people do not attack each other and spread hate speech, both in the real world and in cyberspace.

Since Indonesia entered the era of information technology, many people like surfing on the internet. But unfortunately the virtual world is tainted by hate speech and hoaxes. This all happened after the gates of reform were opened and people could express their opinions freely. But they forget to brake and then express their thoughts with bad words and incitement to hatred.

Incitement to hatred ( hate speech) the public is also obliged to fend off hate speech because the perpetrators can damage peace in Indonesia. Therefore hate speech must be prevented, especially by religious leaders. They have a respectable position and their words will be obeyed by society.

Bawaslu invites religious leaders to work together to monitor and prevent incitement of hatred and fake news ahead of the upcoming 2024 elections. Bawaslu member Totok Hariyono said that Bawaslu needs assistance from various components of society so that elections are free from incitement to hatred, hoaxes, and others.

Mutual cooperation in monitoring and preventing these disturbances, for the sake of creating a healthier, more reliable and legitimative 2024 election. Prevention efforts cannot be carried out optimally if mutual cooperation is not optimal or is still lacking.

Totok explained that in Law Number 7 of 2017 concerning General Elections Article 280 paragraph (1) letter C has regulated prohibitions for implementers, participants and success teams in campaigning including those related to incitement and hate speech.

Violation of Article 280 paragraph (1) letters c, d and e will be subject to imprisonment for a maximum of 2 (two) years and a maximum fine of Rp. 24 million as stipulated in Article 521 of the Election Law.

In a sense, incitement and hate speech there are criminal sanctions. The public should not carelessly comment negatively, especially on social media. The reason is because they can be subject to defamation articles and the ITE Law.

Religious leaders are also aggressively monitoring the incitement of hatred in society so that it does not spread further. Do not let peace be eroded because of differences in political views. If differences make some groups carry out hate speech, it will become chaotic because it ignites hostility, not only in cyberspace but also in the real world. Hostility can spread to brawls which result in many losses.

Religious leaders should give lectures to avoid hate speech, but instead, practice tolerance and speak kindly to each other. Didn’t the Prophet say good or silent? If everyone tolerates and tolerates differences, and doesn’t easily insult others who have different views, then we will have peace.

Preacher Habib Jakfar along with a number of religious leaders made a peace declaration before the 2024 elections, and they agreed to ban the use of houses of worship for campaigning. Habib Jakfar also strictly prohibited the incitement of hatred in the community because it could heat up the atmosphere before the election.

Currently, hate speech can easily be found in cyberspace, with the excuse of not seeing each other’s faces directly, so they feel free. Even though what they are facing is an ordinary human who has a heart so that he can get angry when he is insulted because of other people’s hate speech .

Therefore, religious leaders must prevent the spread of hate speech, because it can damage peace in Indonesia. On the other hand, religious leaders should not make hate speeches. If anyone always preaches with fire and hates the government and speaks harsh words. Whereas as preachers they should bring enlightenment, not hatred.

Videos of preachers who always make hate speech should also be blocked, and social media and video platforms must cooperate with the government. The way to do this is by taking down the video because it can break peace in this country.

People who watch hate speech videos can also report it to the cyber police, whose job is to deal with irregularities in cyberspace. Later, the spreaders and creators of the video could be arrested for breaking the peace and at the same time violating the ITE Law, so that they face a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.

If all elements of society work together, they are optimistic that the 2024 election will run smoothly. Not only religious leaders but all parties must be aware of the dangers of hate speech which will create chaos during the 2024 elections, even after. Religious leaders cooperate in monitoring hate speech, especially in cyberspace. Before the election, no party should seek trouble by throwing hate speeches. The public was also asked to obey the appeals of religious leaders for peaceful elections and not to riot during the campaign.

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