Yogyakarta academicians call on MK chief justice to step down
The Jakarta Post
Around 300 academicians, comprising lecturers, professors and students, from Yogyakarta have called on Arief Hidayat to step down from his position as Constitutional Court (MK) chief justice and member for ethical violations he has allegedly committed.
“As an academician, especially as a law professor, you [Arief] should have understood well that ethical violations are a shame in the career of a constitutional justice, who should be highly respected and [act ethically],” said Eko Riyadi from the Indonesian Islamic University’s (UII) School of Law, when he read out a joint statement during a demonstration at Gadjah Mada University on Wednesday.
As of today, Arief still serves as MK chief justice despite pressure from various groups, which have expected his immediate resignation.
The MK Ethics Council has said Arief is proven to have violated ethics twice. First, he gave a special message to a junior attorney at the Attorney General’s Office and asked him to "assist" a prosecutor at the Trenggalek Prosecutors’ Office in 2016. The second time was when he met with members of the House of Representatives’ Commission III, which oversees legal affairs, during his nomination as an MK justice in 2017.
Eko said two constitutional ethics violations committed by Arief showed that he could not act as a statesman.
Eko also deplored Arief’s previous statements, in which he said criticisms launched by a number academicians were politically motivated.
“We, as academicians, are really concerned with your condition, in which you could no longer think and act wisely. Therefore, we call on Pak Arief to immediately step down.” (gis/ebf)
Constitutional violation: Academicians from Yogyakarta call on the MK chief justice to step down from his position in a demonstration on Feb. 21. (JP/Bambang Muryanto)
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