The Reserve Component for Labor and Students is the Co-optation Strategy of Power in the Labor and Student Movement

Responding to President's Rule No. 3 of 2021 regarding the Implementation of Law no. 23 of 2019 concerning Reserved Components

On January 12th, 2021, President Joko Widodo signed Government Regulation (PP) Number 3 of 2021 concerning the Implementation of Law Number 23 of 2019 concerning Management of National Resources for National Defense (UUPSDN). Based on the Government Regulation (PP), the Ministry of Defense (Kemhan) will recruit and train Reserve Component candidates.

We consider that the plan to establish a reserve component at this time is actually not urgent. The government and the Board of Representatives (DPR) should focus on strengthening its main component, namely the military, in modernizing the defense equipment system and improving the welfare of its soldiers in order to create a professional army, rather than forming a reserve component.

We view that the formation of the Reserve Components by making workers and students the subject of basic military training (Article 69 PP No. 3 of 2021 and Article 37 of the Management of National Resources for National Defense (PSDN) Law) is a form of strategy for co-opting power in the labor and student movements. Workers and students who have become reserve components will be subject to criminal sanctions (Article 77 paragraph (1) of Law Number 23 of 2019) if they refuse to mobilize to face domestic and foreign threats.

The forced involvement of workers and students in the mobilization of reserve components will be prone to being misused for the benefit of the regime under the pretext of dealing with security threats. This will open up space for the legalization of militias/private forces to face their own people, as has happened in Aceh and Timor Leste which resulted in cases of human rights violations such as the use of militias in Timor Leste.

The reserve component for workers and students has the potential to depoliticize the labor and student movement. The formation of a reserve component that is being forced at this time has a tendency of a political dimension, namely for the interests of practical electoral politics rather than for the sake of defense.

We urge the President not to proceed with the formation of a reserve component at this time because its urgency is being questioned. The government should focus on strengthening its main component, namely the military, in modernizing the defense equipment system and improving the welfare of soldiers. In the midst of the economic crisis due to the current corona epidemic, the government should allocate the state budget for economic recovery and to strengthen its main component, namely the military, rather than forming a reserve component.

Jakarta, February 11th, 2021

Civil Society Coalition

(Labor Organization)

  1. Confederation of the Indonesian Trade Union Alliance Congress (KASBI)
  2. National Union Confederation (KSN)
  3. Indonesian Workers' Struggle Confederation (KPBI)
  4. Federation of Indonesian Port Workers (FPPI)

(Student organizations)

  1. University of Indonesia Student Executive Board (BEM)
  2. Student Executive Board (BEM) National Development University (UPN) Veterans
  3. PB HMI (MPO)
  4. Institute for Student Advocacy and Social Studies, Faculty of Law, Andalas University (LAMPK FHUA)
  5. UKM Introduction to Law and Politics Andalas University
  6. BEM FH Brawijaya University
  7. UIN Jakarta Student Alliance
  8. HMI MALANG BRANCH
  9. Student Executive Board (BEM) Universitas Brawijaya
  10. Student Executive Board (BEM) FH Universitas Brawijaya
  11. Badan Eksekutif Mahasiswa (BEM) FP Universitas Brawijaya
  12. Badan Eksekutif Mahasiswa (BEM) FIB Universitas Brawijaya
  13. Badan Eksekutif Mahasiswa (BEM) FIA Universitas Brawijaya
  14. Dewan Perwakilan Mahasiswa (DPM) FH Universitas Brawijaya
  15. Badan Eksekutif Mahasiswa (BEM) FH UMM
  16. LKBHMI Cabang Ambon
  17. Badan Eksekutif Mahasiswa (BEM) FISIP UNPATTI
  18. Dewan Perwakilan Mahasiswa (DPM) FISIP UNPATTI
  19. HMI CABANG AMBON

(NGO)

  1. LBH Jakarta
  2. Elsam
  3. PBHI
  4. KontraS
  5. Imparsial
  6. Setara Institute
  7. HRWG
  8. Forum 4 De Facto
  9. LBH Press
  10. LBH Masyarakat
  11. YLBHI
  12. ICJR
  13. Public Virtue Institute
  14. Amnesty International Indonesia
  15. Centra Initiative

CP:

  1. Ginanjar Ariyasuta (BEM UI) : +62 851-5656-8359
  2. Habib (LAMPK-FH-Univ. Andalas) : +62 822-8426-8124
  3. Shaleh Al Ghifari (LBH Jakarta) : +62 853-7676-9969
  4. Julius Ibrani (PBHI) : +62 813-1496-9726
  5. Husein Ahmad (Imparsial) : +62 812-5966-8926
  6. Ikhsan Yosarie (Setara Institute) : +62 822-8638-9295
  7. Andi Rezaldy (KontraS) : +62 877-8555-3228
  8. Zunnur Roin (Sekjen PB HMI (MPO): 085365309598
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