July 18, 2024

Members of the Special Committee for Elections Law Bill Agree on the Distribution Scheme of New Fifteen Additional Parliamentary Seats

The General Secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Yuswandi A. Temenggung, explains that the distribution of the new fifteen additional parliamentary seats is based on the principle of equality and fairness. According to Yuswandi, after the distribution, there will be no electoral area with seat-to-population ration more than 1:500.000. Every electoral area outside Java with seat-to-population ratio more than 1:500.000 will be rewarded with additional parliamentary seats in accordance with its total population.

“We try to keep seat-to-population ratio in every area below 500.000. For example, we have to add one more seat to West Nusa Tenggara so that the seat-to-population ratio in that area become less than 1:500.000. This is the logic behind the distribution of the new seats,” says Yuswandi in Jakarta (06/14).

Members of the Special Committee for Elections Law Bill have agreed to distribute fifteen new additional parliamentary seats as follows: North Sumatera get one seat, Riau get two seat, Riau Island get one seat, Lampung get two seats, West Nusa Tenggara get one seat, West Kalimantan get two seats, North Kalimantan get three seats, Southeast Sulawesi get one seat, West Sulawesi get one seat, and Central Sulwesi get one seat.

Initially, members of the Special Committee distributed one seat to Papua, but then decided to redistributed the seat to West Kalimantan instead. Members of the Committee argue West Kalimantan consists more population and larger size area, while the seat-to-population ratio in Papua is much lower than in West Kalimantan.

Other parliamentary members are disagreeing with the distribution scheme. Johnny Plate, a parliamentary member from the National Democratic Party (NasDem), says, the distribution scheme designed by members of the Special Committee does not consider the whole political condition in every area in Indonesia. According to Johnny, members of the Special Committee should have considered the political-geographical aspect of under-developed areas.

“We have failed in finding the most fair and equal formula in distributing these additional seats. The distribution scheme agreed upon by members of the Special Committee only worsen the disproportionate issue of our parliamentary system,” Johnny says.