Facebook User Reported to Police for Alleged Smear Campaign Against Ahok


OCTOBER 09, 2016

Jakarta. An organization calling itself the Community of Young Advocates for Ahok-Djarot, or Kotak Adja, has filed a police report against Buni Yani, the Facebook user who allegedly maliciously altered a videotaped speech by Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama before uploading it to the social media platform.

The video resulted in widespread upheaval on social media.


"We have officially reported Facebook account owner B.Y. to the Jakarta Police," Kotak Adja chairman Muannas Alaidid said at the Jakarta Police headquarters on Friday (07/10).

According to Muannas, the alleged perpetrator had misinterpreted Ahok's speech and edited it to conform to his own politically biased perception and interpretation.

"We have observed the developments on the viral video related to Ahok-Djarot, which triggered a polemic in the community. The result of our investigation shows that this originated from the Facebook account belonging to B.Y.," he added.

The video was uploaded after being heavily edited from its initial duration of one hour and 48 minutes to only 31 seconds.

"We have gathered the original evidence, as well as the 31-second video. It was edited and captioned with provocative lines," Muannas said.

Although the original posting had been erased from the Facebook user's account, Kotak Adja has based its complaint on the Law on Electronic Transaction Information to prevent further developments that might trigger hate and prejudice among the public.

The Facebook user reportedly also indicated support for one of the other gubernatorial candidates by posting a registration form for the candidate pair online.

"This is why we believe that this was part of a 'black campaign' by a certain candidate pair to attack another pair," Muannas added.

The organization has urged the police to take over the investigation and arrest the alleged perpetrator.

The video contains short footage of Ahok making a speech, which was edited to show the governor defaming a verse from the Quran during a dialog with residents of the Thousand Islands.

Several groups have apparently tried to report Ahok to the Jakarta Police, under the assumption that he committed religious defamation and blasphemy.