TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - More and more information is coming to light about the events behind the Constitutional Court ruling regarding the requirements for presidential and vice-presidential candidates. It turns out that what we wrote in our Constitutional Court Scandal Edition did not tell the whole dramatic story behind the ruling. Therefore, in this edition we are providing additional information, along with coverage of the November 7 ruling from the Constitutional Court Ethics Council.
The Ethics Council ruled that Constitutional Court Chief Justice Anwar Usman had broken the rules. This was not only because he is Gibran Rakabuming Raka's uncle, but also because he tried to influence other judges to accept the challenge to Article 169 subsection (q) of the General Elections Law. Anwar persuaded the other judges to accept the additional phrase "or have been elected in a general election".
As a result of that additional phrase – which is actually within the remit of the legislature – Gibran meets the requirements to run for the vice-presidency. He then used this ruling to immediately register with the General Elections Commission as running mate to Prabowo Subianto.
Article 17 of the Judicial Powers Law clearly forbids justices from hearing cases if there is a family connection. Anwar Usman certainly knows about this article. He is the author of a book called "Judicial Independence". Judicial independence is the very essence of law enforcement. But instead of abstaining from the Constitutional Court hearing, he played an active role in persuading other judges to go along with his wishes.
It is only right that the Ethics Council dismissed him from the chairpersonship of the Constitutional Court. But one Ethics Council member asked for him to be dishonorably discharged from the court. This would mean he would be dismissed as a judge because of unforgivable transgressions. Legal supremacy in this nation has collapsed at the hands of Anwar Usman.
This ruling also damages democracy because it opens the way for Jokowi to establish a political dynasty. In a democracy, all participants must have the same standing. Gibran is of course in a privileged position because he is the son of the president. Jokowi could direct state institutions to ensure his victory. This is already apparent from a number of letters and the way police officers have removed the posters of other candidates in various locations.
Strangely, the parties supporting Prabowo Subianto have not questioned the problematic position of Gibran. Democratic Party chair Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, the sixth president, knows that the Constitutional Court ruling endangers democracy, but he has not withdrawn his support for Gibran and Prabowo. The continuing support from these parties is an indication that these parties are damaged because they are only seeking power for itself, rather than power to fight for their values.
Perhaps you are tired of reading news about the increasingly confused political situation. There are many other articles in this edition. There is a review of the movie Killers of the Flower Moon – the true story of the killings of members of the Osage Nation in the 1920s, coverage of the China debt trap in the fast-train project, and a report about money laundering and gold imports by a wealthy man from Pontianak.
Enjoy the magazine.
The End for Gibran's Uncle
The Constitutional Court's Ethics Council had agreed to fire Anwar Usman. It was said that he stated that PDIP’s era was over.
Bintan Saragih, Who Demanded Anwar Usman to be Dishonorably Dismissed
Bintan Saragih demanded a closed examination of constitutional justices. He had once been among those delivering a lenient sanction on Arief Hidayat.
Jimly Asshiddiqie: the Game is Over
How Prabowo-Gibran Setting the Sails for a Political Dynasty
The Prabowo-Gibran presidential campaign has assessed the impact of the dismissal of Anwar Usman as Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court. They are downplaying the issue of a Jokowi political dynasty.