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Jakarta Post

Asian forum on human rights conveys disappointment toward Jokowi

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, February 5, 2020   /   08:37 am
Asian forum on human rights conveys disappointment toward Jokowi Police use a water cannon to disperse protesters in front of the House of Representatives compound on Sept. 24, 2019. (JP/Donny Fernando)

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s second term has yet to show any signs of progress in resolving human rights violations, the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development has concluded.

A press release made available to The Jakarta Post expresses concerns that, after his 100th day of his second term in office, Jokowi has once again failed to fulfill his campaign promise of addressing human rights abuses.

“We call on the government of Indonesia to take all necessary measures to address the situation and put a halt to the erosion of civic and democratic space in the country,” the press release said.

The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development, together with its members in Indonesia, the Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI), the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras), the Human Rights Working Group (HRWG), Indonesian Human Rights Watch (Imparsial), the Indonesian Legal Aid and Human Rights Association (PBHI), the Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI), the Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy (ELSAM) and Yayasan Sekretariat Anak Merdeka (Samin), said that Jokowi had much work to do in terms of resolving human rights violations, including those from 1965 and 1998, as well as ones related to protests in September 2019.

Read also: One student dies, one in critical condition after protest turns violent

The September protests were expressions of dissatisfaction over the Jokowi administration’s revisions to the Corruption Eradication Commission Law and Criminal Code Law.

“During the protests in September, there were constant reports of the disproportionate use of violence and force by the police to suppress peaceful protests across Indonesia, resulting in many injuries and even fatalities,” the release said.

The forum also explained that the government had failed the working class with the omnibus laws, a set of laws intended to streamline investments in Indonesia. 

“In the process of drafting the proposed law, which is likely to bring more harm than good as it diminishes workers’ rights, worsens environmental degradation and criminalizes minorities, labor unions were not consulted. This move clearly shows that Indonesia prioritizes businesses and investments over the protection of its workers,” the forum said. (gis)