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Jakarta Post

Court finds no evidence of Prabowo’s massive electoral fraud allegations

  • Marguerite Afra Sapiie
    Marguerite Afra Sapiie

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, June 27, 2019   /   05:01 pm
Court finds no evidence of Prabowo’s massive electoral fraud allegations Constitutional Court justices read out their ruling over in the 2019 presidential election dispute in Central Jakarta on Thursday. (JP/Donny Fernando)

The Constitutional Court said on Thursday that it had found no evidence that could prove allegations of “structured, systematic and massive” electoral fraud filed by the losing Prabowo Subianto – Sandiaga Uno ticket in its petition challenging the presidential election results.

In its petition, the Prabowo camp alleged that incumbent President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo had misused the state bureaucracy and state-owned enterprises and involved state institutions to campaign for his reelection. 

The losing ticket also accused Jokowi of transactional politics by using state money to fund his administration’s programs and influence people to vote for him and running mate Ma’ruf Amin. 

Reading out the ruling on Thursday, justice Arief Hidayat said the plaintiffs had failed to explain the definition of “money politics” and “vote-buying” in the lawsuit and that the facts presented to the court showed no actual evidence that the allegations had influenced voters as they exercised their right to vote. 

“The plaintiffs have failed to elaborate clearly on how the allegations correlate to the vote tally secured by [Prabowo] and [Jokowi],” Arief said. 

On allegations that claimed the involvement of state institutions, including police and military personnel, in rallying for Jokowi, justice Aswanto said the nine-panel bench did not find any strong evidence that could prove the claims. 

The court reviewed a video submitted by the Prabowo camp that showed Jokowi asking police and military personnel to help disseminate the government’s programs, and concluded that there was nothing wrong with that because “there has been no order to support certain presidential candidate,” he said. 

“The allegations of structured, systematic and massive fraud could not be proven and therefore the argument is legally baseless,” Aswanto said. 

The bench also argued that some of the allegations, such as that regional leaders allegedly campaigned for Jokowi, had been settled by the Elections Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu). 

In its petition, the Prabowo-Sandiaga ticket claimed that the 2019 presidential election was marred by “structured, systematic and massive” fraud as the camp alleged that the KPU had committed election rigging and inflated Jokowi-Ma’ruf’s vote tally by about 22 million votes. 

The KPU has named Jokowi and Ma’ruf the winners in April’s presidential race, with the pair gaining 55.5 percent of the vote against Prabowo and Sandiaga’s 44.5 percent. 

The court is set to announce its final ruling in the presidential election dispute on Thursday.