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March 2009

bukan pemilu rakyat.jpg

Photo is of FPBJ trade union demo.

For a leaflet by another group, see below:
POSKO PERSATUAN MAHASISWA DAN RAKYAT UNTUK PENOLAKAN PEMILU ELIT 2009
(JNPM, LMND PRM, KPRM-PRD, PPRM)
CP: 0852-251077952 (Mutiara) & 085647991755 (Aslihul F)

Their leaflet is below:


MAHASISWA & RAKYAT BERSATU!

Dengan persatuan mobilisasi rakyat dan mahasiswa, pemilu tahun 1999 terpaksa diselenggarakan (lebih cepat 3 tahun dari jadwal seharusnya), dengan komposisi dan syarat-syarat kepesertaan pemilu yang lebih demokratis dibandingkan pemilu 2004 dan 2009. Tanpa fatwa haram, TPS-TPS pada pemilu 1955 dipenuhi kegembiraan rakyat.

Mengapa Pemilu 2009 Harus Dilawan?

(click 'more')

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Papernas leaders sow illusions of radical change through the ballot box
By Zely Ariane

[The following article was written in response to an article by Kelik Ismunanto, a leader of Papernas (National Liberation Unity Party) titled “Indonesia: Tracing a path towards parliament” that was published in the December 3 issue of Green Left Weekly. Papernas was formed in July 2006 by the radical left People’s Democratic Party (PRD) to present a radical anti-neoliberal platform in this year’s Indonesian parliamentary elections. Zely Ariane is a former PRD secretary-general and now a leading member of the Political Committee for the Poor-People’s Democratic Party (KPRM-PRD). This party was formed in November 2007 by members of the PRD-Papernas expelled for disagreeing with a Papernas leadership decision to enter into an electoral coalition with one of the existing parliamentary parties. The article has been translated by James Balowski.]

See Papernas leaders sow illusions of radical change through the ballot box

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Around 300 plus workers from the Jabotabek Workers Struggle Federation (FPBJ) and the Congress of Indonesian Trade Union Alliances (KASBI) demonstrated against the 2009 Elections. They shouted "The 2009 elections are not a peoples' elections"; "Overthrowe the elite; the people will rule." There were also deklegates from the Indonesian Transport Workers Struggle Union (SBTP) and the and the Workers Struggle Solidarity Unity (GSPB). Similar actions have taken place on other cities in Java and in Kalimantan and Sulawesi. More are scheduled between now and the April 9 elections. Other groups also issued statements of supprt and are expected to be involved in future actions. They include: Indonesian Students Union/Serikat Mahasiswa Indonesia (SMI), Indonesian Buskers Union/Serikat Pengamen Indonesia (SPI), Committee for the Preparation of a Youth Organisation/Komite Persiapan Organisasi Pemuda (KPOP), Freedom Women's National NetworkJaringan Nasional Perempuan Mahardhika (JNPM), Working Peoples Association/Perhimpunan Rakyat Pekerja (PRP), Kerawang Peasants Union/Serikat Petani Karawang (SEPETAK) , PAWANG dan The National Students League for Democracy-Politics of the Poor/Liga Mahasiswa Nasional Untuk Demokrasi-Politik Rakyat Miskin (LMND-PRM)

For a longer report in Indonesian, see below.

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I have just returned from a lecture visit to the Philippines. I fave a guest lecture at the Asia Centre, University of the Philippines on the coming April, Indonesian elections. I also spoke at the Instite of Popular Democracy to a gathering sponsored via the Laban ng Masa (soo photo below). I will try to write some reflections on Philippines' politics in the next week or so.

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With Ed Tadem, Professor of Asian Studies, University of the Philippines - Diliman, and students after giving a lecture on the Indonesian elections at the Asia Centre, March 14.

Elections for the two houses of Indonesia’s national parliament and the provincial parliaments will take place on April 9, at a time of growing dissatisfaction with the parliamentary parties. These elections will be followed in July by what will likely be the first of two rounds to elect a president and vice-president.

Presidential candidates must be nominated by a party or parties with a combined minimum of 20% of the seats in the 550-member House of Representatives (DPR), making the DPR elections part of the process of electing the president. The DPR is the main legislative body, while the Regional Representatives Council (DPD) is a weaker body supposedly representing regional interests. Candidates for the DPR must stand as representatives of parties. Candidates for the DPD cannot be party representatives. The provincial parliaments are all party-based. Under a more decentralised budget system, these parliaments now have increased influence over local government finances.

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It's a cult of personality among candidates who have no personality

Tempo Magazine - February 17-23, 2009

Election fever mounts as candidates discuss strategic alliances and running mates, but academic and Indonesia expert Max Lane says this may be an election characterized by disappointment – for candidates and constituents alike.

Back-packing through Indonesia as a university student in the late 1960s, Lane was intrigued by a country with a rich political history, though he says you may not see much of that richness today.

A Visiting Fellow with the Department of Malay Studies, National University of Singapore, Lane sat down with Tempo, amidst his own research and interviews, to share his thoughts on the state of Indonesian politics today. Excerpts of the interview:

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