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Indonesian political party accused of crime for involving children in campaign

Publication Date : 27-03-2014

 

Indonesia's Elections Monitoring Agency (Bawaslu) says it has sent a recommendation, indicating that election violations were committed by the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS), to the General Elections Commission (KPU) and the Indonesian Commission on Child Protection (KPAI).

The recommendation was submitted after the committee sought clarification from the party for having allegedly involved children in its campaign rallies.

“The alleged election administrative violations have been referred to the KPU and the KPAI as indications of criminal violations,” Bawaslu legal division coordinator Nelson Simanjuntak said in Jakarta on Wednesday, as quoted by kompas.com.

He said the PKS reportedly often involved children in its campaign rallies, one of which was a mass rally at Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, Senayan, Central Jakarta, on March 16.

One of the other considerations that prompted Bawaslu to file the report was statements from PKS president Anis Matta in which he reportedly admitted that the party had involved children in campaign rallies. Bawaslu said it had summonsed Anis to clarify the matter.

“We have summonsed him three times but he has not yet appeared. Only for the first summonsing he sent other party officials to give clarification,” said Nelson.

Earlier, Anis said involving children in campaign rallies was part of the party’s political education for its members. He said the PKS campaign was based on the concept of family resilience, and therefore nothing was wrong about children being involved in the party’s activities.

Based on monitoring activities and reports from people in areas across Indonesia from March 16 to March 18, the KPAI found 14 cases of children allegedly being involved in PKS campaign rallies.

Involving children who are yet to have the right to vote violates Article 87 of Law No. 23/2002 on child protection.

 

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