3 Serious Problems Appointing Andika Perkasa the Sole Candidate for The Military Commander

Muhammad Yunus 

Thursday, November 4th, 2021 | 12:56 WIB

SuaraSulsel.id –  The Civil Society Coalition for Security Sector Reform assesses the steps taken by Indonesian President Joko Widodo who proposed General Andika Perkasa as The candidate for the Commander of the Indonesian National Armed Forces contains three serious problems.

The Civil Society Coalition for Security Sector Reform consists of KontraS, Imparsial, LBH Jakarta, HRWG, Setara Institute, Public Virtue Research Institute, Amnesty International Indonesia, Initiative for Democracy and Security (IDeKa), Indonesia Corruption Watch (ICW), ELSAM, National PBHI , LBHM, LBH Pers, ICJR.

First, the President of the Republic of Indonesia has set aside the pattern of dimension rotation that prevailed in the Reformation era in the regeneration of the Commander as the norm that applies in Article 13 paragraph (4) of Military Decree No. 34 of 2004.

Second, the President of the Republic of Indonesia has proposed a name whose track record still needs to be tested by an independent state institution in the fields of law, human rights, and eradication of corruption. In this case, Komnas HAM and the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK).

Third, the development of maritime-centric regional security threats today requires greater attention in the maritime sector.

Furthermore, the Coalition explains the important notes as follows:

First, the proposed name Staff Chief Andika Perkasa as Military Commander was a wrong choice. Because it ignores the policy pattern based on the rotation approach.

If referring to Article 13 paragraph (4) of the Military Decree, the position of the Commander is held alternately by active high-ranking officers from each force who are currently or have served as Staff Chief of the Forces.

The application of the rotation pattern will foster a sense of equality between dimensions, balance the orientation of the military's posture development, as well as equal opportunities for high-ranking officers, regardless of the dimension of origin.

This can also have a positive impact in the form of strengthening the internal solidity of the military. In addition, the rotation pattern is important in order to reduce the jealousy that is very likely to occur among soldiers. As a result of the impression that the President of the Republic of Indonesia has brought gold in one dimension. Like the New Order era.

The pattern of rotation of the position of the Commander, which has been started since the beginning of the Reformation, certainly needs to be maintained, moreover it has also been mandated in the Military Decree.

In short, the coalition views that the President of the Republic of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, should not ignore the pattern of changing the Commander-in-Chief based on dimension rotation.

Ignoring this approach can raise a big question mark whether the President of the Republic of Indonesia prioritizes the subjective political factor of close relations rather than using a professional and substantive approach.

Second, the President of the Republic of Indonesia must really ensure that the candidate for the Commander of the Military that he proposes does not have a bad record, especially regarding human rights violations.

There are reports linking the name Andika Perkasa in the case of the murder of Papuan leader Theys Hiyo Eluay which must be taken seriously (Tempo, October 23rd, 2003). The President of the Republic of Indonesia should have conducted comprehensive information gathering. To all candidates by involving credible institutions in order to strengthen the considerations of the President of the Republic of Indonesia in making the right decisions.

With the submission of General Andika Perkasa as the sole candidate for Commander, it shows that the President of the Republic of Indonesia does not have a serious commitment to upholding human rights as his political commitment.

Furthermore, there is a report that mentions the alleged assets of Staff Chief Andika Perkasa with a fantastic value. It must be immediately clarified and explained to the public.

As a soldier who submits to the Sapta Marga who upholds the value of honesty, the existence of reports of ownership of assets up to 179.9 billion IDR must be explained in a transparent and accountable manner so that it is clear.

"So we consider it important to carry out an audit of Andika Perkasa's assets by the KPK. Moreover, General Andika Perkasa is said to have never reported the State Wealth Administration report before even though the capacity in question is a high state official," said Imparsial Representative, Hussein Ahmad, in a release Thursday, November 4th, 2021.

Third, observing the development of future regional security challenges that are increasingly maritime-centric. Starting from the South China Sea conflict which has no sign of a resolution in the near future, acts of piracy in the Malacca Strait that are still ongoing, fishing theft by foreign fishing boats, weapons smuggling for criminal groups via sea, and so on.

Some of the challenges above are just a few of the many other threats that still need to be addressed in the maritime sector. This again should be in line with the vision of the President of the Republic of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, who wants to make Indonesia the World Maritime Axis.

"The President of the Republic of Indonesia seems to have to continue to rejuvenate his memory of his own vision and commitment when campaigning as a candidate for President of the Republic of Indonesia," said Hussein.

Fourth, the fit and proper test stage for the candidate for the Commander in Chief which will soon be held in the Board of Citizen Representative (DPR) must be carried out in an open, accountable manner, involving the participation of the public and independent state institutions.

Although the name of the candidate listed in the Surpres is only one candidate, it is the duty of the board to examine the candidate carefully. Don't get the impression that the Board of Citizen Representative is just a “stamp” for the President of the Republic of Indonesia.

In addition, if the result is that the Board of Citizen Representative does not approve of the candidate, then referring to Article 13 paragraph (8) of the Military Decree, the board has the right to refuse by providing written reasons explaining its disapproval to the President of the Republic of Indonesia.

Fifth, the Coalition considers that Staff General Andika Perkasa is still being proposed as a candidate for Commander of the Indonesian National Armed Forces by the President of the Republic of Indonesia without heeding the rotation pattern as mandated by the Military Law as well as the alleged involvement of Andika Perkasa in the Theys Hiyo Eluay case and the alleged ownership of a number of fantastic assets, indicating a setback in the reform and transformation efforts within the military.

Based on the coalition records above, the Coalition urges:

  1. The Board of Citizen Representative to do a serious examine of the commitment of the candidate for Military commander in chief to democracy, human rights, eradicating corruption and others, in particular the alleged connection between the Staff General Andika Perkasa in the murder of Theys Hiyo Eluay and the ownership of this fantastic amount of wealth.
  2. The Board of Citizen Representative in testing and assessing candidates for The Commander must involve and ask for public opinion, independent State Institutions and/or credible experts in testing future commander-in-chief candidates, for example by involving Komnas HAM and the KPK and other civil society institutions.
  3. The President of the Republic of Indonesia continued and formed an Acceleration Team that was directly responsible to the President of the Republic of Indonesia to carry out reform and transformation of the military.
  4. Komnas HAM to conduct an immediate examination of Andika Perkasa's alleged role in the Theys Eluay murder case in November 2001.

Yesterday, the President of the Republic of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, sent a letter from the President of the Republic of Indonesia (Surpres) containing the name of the candidate for the Commander of the Indonesian Armed Forces to the leadership of the Indonesian House of Representatives. Based on the Surpres, there is one single candidate, namely Staff Chief Andika Perkasa as a replacement for the Commander Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto, who will soon retire. Based on Article 13 paragraph (5) of Law no. 34 of 2004 concerning the Military (Decree) The President of the Republic of Indonesia proposed the name of the candidate for the Commander of the Military for approval by the board.

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