Indonesian lawmakers passed a stricter government-proposed regulation on mass organizations into law on Tuesday (24/10). (Antara Photo/M. Agung Rajasa)
Strict Regulation on Mass Organizations Passed Into Law
BY :ALIN ALMANAR
OCTOBER 24, 2017
Jakarta. Indonesian lawmakers passed a stricter government-proposed regulation on mass organizations into law on Tuesday (24/10). The original presidential regulation in lieu of law sparked many controversies in the past few months.
The decision to pass the law, reached during a plenary meeting at the House of Representatives, means dozens of reviews against the regulation that were tried at the Constitutional Court were scrapped.
Six of the 10 political party factions at the parliament decided to approve the regulation. Three factions called for further revisions.
"Taking into account several notes [on the law] from party factions, the plenary meeting passed the presidential regulation in lieu of law on mass organizations into state law," said House Deputy Speaker Fadli Zon, a member of the Great Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra).
The original regulation that was issued four months ago revoked an earlier requirement in a 2013 law to bring mass organizations to court before disbanding them.
The government used the regulation to disband the non-violent Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia (HTI) earlier this year, accusing it of threatening national unity by advocating for an Islamic caliphate.
Islamist groups including the hardline Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) accused the government of discrediting them with the regulation. Several rights groups also criticized the regulation for jeopardizing Indonesia's hard-won democracy.
More than 35 reviews against the regulation had been filed with the Constitutional Court, but not a single verdict was reached until Tuesday's decision.
Gerindra, the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) and National Mandate Party (PAN) rejected the proposed regulation, while the Democratic Party chose the middle way.
"All the reviews had to be scrapped since the regulation has already been passed into law," Robikin Emhas of Indonesia's largest moderate Muslim group Nahdlatul Ulama said in a statement.
Additional reporting by Telly Nathalia