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Jakarta Post

‘Don't try to disrupt political stability’, chief of staff Moeldoko warns KAMI

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Fri, October 2, 2020   /   03:13 pm
‘Don't try to disrupt political stability’, chief of staff Moeldoko warns KAMI Hundreds of people gathered in a public protest on Sept. 28 to block access to Gedung Juang 45 in Sawahan district, Surabaya, East Java. The venue was to host an event of the Save Indonesia Action Coalition (KAMI), which protesters decried as a "dangerous" organization. (kompas.com/Achmad Faizal)

Presidential Chief of Staff Moeldoko has warned the Save Indonesia Action Coalition (KAMI) not to disrupt the nation’s political stability, alleging its members of having “certain interests" in forming the group.

"Don't even try to disrupt political stability. [...] Everything comes with a risk," Moeldoko said in a statement on Thursday as reported by kompas.com, implying that any actions by the group that disrupted national stability would have consequences.

KAMI was founded when 150 prominent public figures came together on Aug. 18, 2020, the day after Independence Day. According to KAMI cofounder and former Muhammadiyah chairman Din Syamsudin, the group aimed to prevent any deviations from Indonesia’s founding principles.

The group’s founders include prominent government critics such as Rachmawati Soekarnoputri, a daughter of Indonesia’s first president Soekarno, former coordinating maritime affairs minister Rizal Ramli, former Indonesian Military (TNI) commander Gen. (ret.) Gatot Nurmantyo and Islam Defenders Front (FPI) chairman Sobri Lubis.

They claim that the country has strayed from the republic’s founding principles and that the House of Representatives and political parties had failed to uphold the will of the people.

Read also: 150 prominent national figures form coalition to ‘save Indonesia’

Moeldoko said that the government did not prohibit the establishment of civil society groups or movements and that it remained open to criticism and advice from KAMI. He stressed, however, that the country had to strike a balance between democracy and national stability.

"[KAMI] is still in check. We don't need to overreact to its ideas, as they are part of our democracy. However, I need to remind them if they [interfere] with the country’s stability," said Moeldoko, who is a former TNI commander.

On Monday, local police dispersed an event organized by KAMI in Surabaya, East Java, following a public protest that reportedly called the organization “dangerous”.

Sawahan Police chief A.K.P. Wisnu Setyawan Kuncoro said that the group had not secured the appropriate permits to hold the event at Gedung Juang 45.

“The organizers should have taken into account the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Wisnu said as quoted by kompas.com.

Gatot Nurmantyo, who is on the KAMI executive committee and was scheduled to deliver a speech at the event, suspected that the public protest was orchestrated “by someone”, though he did not elaborate on his statement. (nal)