In his op-ed article titled “Special Committee: Recommendations from Local Election Experts Are Not Enough” published in Kompas (03/06), the Deputy of the Special Committee for the Election Laws Draft from the Democrat Party, Benny Kabur Harman, argues that the recommendations provided by national election experts are not enough and in poor quality. Therefore, members of the Special Committee decided to proceed with their plan to go to Mexico and Germany to comparatively study the election implementation in both countries.
As a response to Benny’s assertion, the Executive Director of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem), Titi Anggraini, says it is not appropriate for members of the Special Committee to criticize the recommendations from election experts by saying their recommendations are in poor quality. Those election experts are invited by the Special Committee especially to give them some advice. The members of the Special Team themselves never really ask specific question regarding election implementation process abroad, especially Mexico and Germany.
“They should never say that the recommendations are in poor quality. What kind of quality recommendations do you expect from someone you only invited to talk for less than three hours? I also doubt that the members of the Special Committee really study and peruse the recommendation papers that the experts provided,” says Titi to Rumah Pemilu (03/06).
Previously, during a public discussion titled “Drafting More Just and Proportional Election Laws” (03/02), a political science professor from Airlangga University, Ramlan Surbakti, says that the comparative study to Mexico and Germany will not produce any significant insights for the members of the Special Committee, especially if the study only conducted for less than five days. Members of the Special Committee also keep changing the reason for the comparative study.
“Previousy, they say the visit was for parliamentary diplomatic mission. But recently they say it’s to study election process of other countries. I have this suspicion that the international visit is basically pointless,” says Ramlan.
Ramlan argues that it would be better for the members of the Special Committee to immediately discuss the goals that they wanted to realize by passing the new Election Laws. For example, the new Election Laws is needed to resolve chronic problems of Indonesian democracy, such as oligarchy within political parties.