The Government is Committed to Maintain ASN Neutrality for the Realization of Fair Elections
The State Civil Apparatus (ASN) must act politically neutral in order to realize honest and fair General Elections. ASN neutrality is of course an important principle to produce elections with integrity and away from the influence of partiality towards certain groups and classes.
La Bayoni as the Deputy for Technical Support (Bawaslu) of the Election Supervisory Body said that Bawaslu has a commitment and endeavor to maintain the neutrality of ASN so that the 2024 Election can run honestly and fairly. Bawaslu, which is one of the election supervisors, must ensure that every organizer, voter, participant, government apparatus, and all related parties must behave and act honestly, receive equal treatment and be free from fraud by any party.
La Bayoni also explained, based on data in November 2020, 1,038 cases of alleged ASN violations were found and as many as 369 reports of violations of ASN neutrality had been reported to the State Civil Apparatus Commission (KASN). In detail, the man who was born in Maluku also said that there were at least 5 categories related to ASN neutrality.
First, social media campaign/socialization (30.4%), holding activities that lead to taking sides with one of the candidates/prospective candidates (22.4%), taking photos with prospective candidates/pairs of candidates by following hand gestures/gestures that indicate partiality (12.6%).
He acknowledged that the potential for neutrality disturbances could occur at every stage of the election and elections. The potential for neutrality disturbances could occur before the implementation of the regional election stages, the registration stage of regional head candidates, the stage of determining regional head candidates, or at the stage after the determination of the elected regional head. Even in a heated political situation, ASN must maintain a professional position that does not take sides with political contestants who will compete in the elections.
Meanwhile, the Coordinator of the Prevention and Parmas Division of the Lampung Bawaslu Hamid Badrul Munir said that this was important to equalize perceptions regarding the neutrality of ASN in the 2024 Election. According to him ASN is a very important sector in the 2024 Election because it relates to public services.
It is not without reason why ASN must be neutral, because this aims to ensure that candidates and political parties have equal opportunities, prevent unfair intervention, and maintain equal elections for all participants. Apart from that, it is also necessary to maintain public trust in order to be able to prevent speculation that elections are influenced by certain parties.
It should also be noted that in order to maintain ASN neutrality, a Joint Decree was issued between the Minister of Administrative and Bureaucratic Reform, the Minister of Home Affairs, the Chairman of the KASN and the Chairperson of the Indonesian Bawaslu regarding guidelines for fostering and supervising ASN neutrality in elections and elections to be published in 2022.
State Civil Apparatuses including the National Police and the TNI are servants of the state, their position is closely related to binding regulations not to show their support and political references during the election period, even though they have the right to vote. This is different from society in general, because the smooth running of elections cannot be separated from the neutrality of ASN.
On a different occasion, Secretary General of the Ministry of Home Affairs Suhajar Diantoro stressed the importance of ASN maintaining neutrality in welcoming the 2024 Election. Non-neutral ASN certainly has the potential to misuse resources, the bureaucratic arena holds the government, will provide unfair services.
According to Suhajar, ASN that is not neutral can cause a loss of public trust in the bureaucracy. For this reason, the neutrality of ASN needs to be maintained to ensure justice and equality in realizing good elections. Especially in this modern era, ASN is defined as a corps of employees who are specifically trained, tested and appointed independently by the government. Of course they have to provide services to the community fairly.
He emphasized that Bawaslu must ensure that there is no policing of the bureaucracy. Not only that, the head of the regional inspectorate and the regional secretary are also responsible for ensuring that ASN can be neutral and not side with certain groups.
He also explained that the neutrality of ASN has been regulated in Law Number 5 of 2014 concerning ASN. Therefore, ASN must adhere to the principle of neutrality by not taking sides from any form of influence, not taking sides with certain interests or any interests.
In addition, the Ministry of Home Affairs is also not playing around with the neutrality of ASN, the Ministry of Home Affairs will also impose sanctions on acting regional heads who are not neutral, ranging from reprimands, demotions, to dishonorable dismissals.
ASN neutrality is a feature of election culture in Indonesia, ASN are required to be neutral while also maintaining the dignity of democracy and not polluting the spirit of democracy in Indonesia. Of course ASN Neutrality must also be implemented in order to realize honest and fair elections.