Forget me not: Journalist and writer Dandhy Dwi Laksono displays the picture of slain human rights activist Munir as his Twitter avatar. On Sunday, Dandhy invited his followers to do the same, in order to commemorate the eighth anniversary of the activist’s death and to urge the resolution of Munir’s murder case. The campaign has already proved hugely successful with Indonesia’s young generation (JP)The unresolved murder of leading human rights activist Munir Said Thalib is gaining higher attention from youngsters, according to a campaigner using the popular Twitter micro-blogging site.
On Sunday, journalist-cum-writer Dandhy Dwi Laksono started inviting people to feature an image of Munir Said Thalib as their Twitter profile picture, or avatar. Via his account, @dandhy_laksono, he asked followers to put the picture up for eight days to commemorate the eighth anniversary of the activist’s death, which falls this Friday.
The movement, entitled “Resist Forgetting” (Melawan Lupa), quickly gained attention as many Twitter users, who are mostly teenagers, changed their avatar to the activist’s photo.
“We invite the young generation to learn more about Munir. Hopefully, these teenagers will continue to demand the resolution of his murder case in the future,” Dandhy told The Jakarta Post Digital on Wednesday.
Investigations into the activist's death concluded that Munir was poisoned with arsenic on board the second leg of a Garuda Indonesia flight from Jakarta to Amsterdam. He was found dead aboard the aircraft on Sept 7, 2004. A former Garuda Indonesia pilot, Polycarpus Budihari Prijanto, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for his role in the murder. But the main actor behind the murder has never been revealed.
Dandy is aiming to reach 2 million accounts with his campaign by Friday or about 10 percent of Twitter users around the country.
“At least, Munir’s photos are being widely circulated and they will continue to haunt the mastermind or masterminds behind his murder,” he added.
The campaign's supporters range from Deputy Law and Human Rights Minister Denny Indrayana to singer Glenn Fredly and actress Julia Perez. The latter two have more than one million followers each.
Subsequently, the celebrities’ teenage fans tried to figure out who Munir was.
“Jupe, who is the man on your avatar?” said one of Julia’s followers, @Ameryciana, on Tuesday.
“Munir was a human rights activist. Don’t forget him,” Julia answered via her account @juliaperrez.
The head of the independent Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras), which was cofounded by Munir, said he was heartened by the widespread response to the campaign.
“It shows that the [resolution of] Munir’s case is still supported by many people. They displayed his picture because they respect him, or believe that [his murder] is still unresolved” the commission’s coordinator, Haris Azhar, told The Jakarta Post.
Kontras will be arranging performances in front of the Presidential Palace on Thursday, while rallies to the palace and the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) -- demanding that the murder case be reviewed -- will take place the following day. (yps/iwa)