The Urgency and Efficiency of the Concurrent Model Implementation of the 2024 General Election and PILKADA
Indonesia as a country with a presidential government system as contained in the constitution (amendments to the 1945 Constitution) is understood together that the concept of a presidential system is the division of powers, namely the executive, legislative and judiciary (trias politica). Scott Mainwairing characterizes the presidential system in that the president is the head of state as well as head of government, the president and executive are elected by the people, the executive branch is not part of the legislature, so it cannot be dismissed by the legislature except through the impeachment mechanism, and the president cannot dissolve the legislature (Saraswati: 2012). The form of democratization in this system is clearly seen in the process of direct general election by the people with the principles of being direct, general, free, secret, honest and fair. General Elections for the President and Vice President, the People’s Legislative Assembly, DPR, DPD, Provincial DPRD and Regency/City DPRD as stipulated in Law Number 7 of 2017 concerning General Elections Article 167 paragraph (3) are held simultaneously. Then also the Election of Governors, Regents and Mayors in Article 201 paragraph (1) to paragraph (8) of Law Number 10 of 2016 was also carried out simultaneously. However, what the layman imagines when interpreting simultaneous elections is why there is a difference in the law if all of the election agenda is an election based on the principle of fairness. Then what is the urgency in choosing the simultaneous election model for simultaneous elections and simultaneous local elections in 2024 to be carried out in close proximity. So the author tries to carry out an analysis based on literature studies so that the rationalization of selecting the simultaneous model can be put forward.
The idea of simultaneous elections in this case is that the president and the legislature are seen as a form of strengthening the presidential system based on the Constitutional Court Decision Number 14/PUU-XI/2013 as the opinion of the court in paragraph [3.17]
“…Based on the experience of the constitutional practice, the implementation of the Presidential Election after the Election of Members of the Representative Body does not provide the strengthening of the government system that is desired by the constitution. Therefore, the norm for implementing the Presidential Election which is carried out after the Election for Members of Representative Institutions has clearly not been in accordance with the spirit contained in the 1945 Constitution and is not in accordance with the meaning of general elections referred to by the 1945 Constitution, …”
“…the concurrent implementation of the Presidential Election and the Election of Members of the Representative Body will indeed be more efficient, so that the financing of the implementation saves more state money originating from taxpayers and the results of exploitation of natural resources and other economic resources. This will increase the state’s ability to achieve state objectives as mandated in the Preamble to the 1945 Constitution, which among other things is to promote general welfare and the greatest prosperity of the people. In addition, the presidential election which is held simultaneously with the election for members of the representative body will also reduce time wastage and reduce conflict or horizontal friction in society; ….”
Furthermore, it is also explained in the Constitutional Court Decision Number 55/PUU-XVII/2019 in paragraph [3.16]
“…That after tracing back the original intent regarding the simultaneous general elections; the relationship between simultaneous general elections in the context of strengthening the presidential government system; and tracing the meaning of simultaneous general elections in the Constitutional Court Decision Number 14/PUU-XI/2013, there are a number of choices of simultaneous general election models that can still be judged constitutional based on the 1945 Constitution, namely:
Simultaneous general elections to elect members of the DPR, DPD, President/Vice President, and DPRD members;
Simultaneous general elections to elect members of the DPR, DPD, President/Vice President, Governors and Regents/Mayors;
Simultaneous general elections to elect members of the DPR, DPD, President/Vice President, DPRD members, Governors and Regents/Mayors;
National simultaneous elections to elect members of the DPR, DPD, President/Vice President; and some time after that simultaneous local elections were held to elect members of the Provincial DPRD, members of the Regency/Municipal DPRD, governors and regents/mayors;
National simultaneous elections to elect members of the DPR, DPD, President/Vice President; and some time after that a simultaneous provincial general election was held to elect members of the Provincial DPRD and elect a governor; and then some time after that simultaneous district/city general elections were held to elect members of the Regency/Municipal DPRD and elect the Regent and Mayor;
Other options as long as maintaining the simultaneous nature of general elections to elect members of the DPR, DPD, and the President/Vice President;”
“…determination of the chosen model is the area for legislators to decide on. However, in deciding on the choice of model for the simultaneous holding of general elections, legislators need to consider several things, namely: (1) the selection of a model that has implications for changing laws is carried out with the participation of all groups concerned with holding general elections; (2) the possibility of changing the law on the choice of these models is carried out earlier so that there is time for simulations to be carried out before the changes are actually implemented effectively; (3) legislators take into account all the technical implications of the available model choices so that their implementation remains within the limits of reasonable reasoning, especially to realize quality general elections; (4) the choice of model always takes into account the ease and simplicity for voters in exercising their right to vote as a form of exercising people’s sovereignty; and (5) not frequently changing the direct election model which is held simultaneously so as to build certainty and stability in the implementation of general elections; “
The Constitutional Court hereby confirms that so far there is nothing unconstitutional about the 1945 Constitution, but a comprehensive deepening of interpretation is needed in the framework of strengthening the presidential system. The idea of the election concept itself is different from regional head elections as explained in article 22E paragraph (2) of the 1945 Constitution which is then further interpreted in paragraph [6.1] dissenting option of Decision Number 14/PUU-XI/2013.
“… then the Court must also be consistent in continuing to base the general election regime only on the election of “members of the People’s Representative Council, Regional Representative Council, President and Vice President and Regional People’s Representative Council”. Thus, regional head and deputy regional head elections cannot be included in the general election regime, so that the Court is not authorized to try them because the original intent was not like that. These consequences must be understood so that the Court’s consistency with its decisions is maintained;….”
Talking about one of the election components, namely election infrastructure. This context includes how the technical implementation is carried out, including human resources, election logistical readiness, to the infrastructure used in holding elections. The resources referred to are ad hoc organizers as the work of the Sub-District Election Committee, Voting Committee and Voting Assistant Groups which intersect with regional head elections. The implication is that the term of office is likely to continue as stated in Article 46 paragraph (3) of KPU Regulation Number 8 of 2022 concerning the Establishment and Work Procedure of the Ad Hoc Election Management Agency and the Election of Governors and Deputy Governors, Regents and Deputy Regents, Mayors and Deputy Mayors , with a total working period of 20 months. This working period is of course followed by an excessive workload. Also, considering that when the ad hoc organizer’s working period ends, it is up to April 2024, followed by the stages of regional head elections until December 2024. In addition, it is also in the stages, especially the collection and Vote counting both in elections and elections is still carried out by a manual system depending on the durability of the ad hoc organizers. For this reason, the number of personnel, age, technical ability will determine the implementation. Furthermore, logistical readiness requires accuracy and acceleration of KPU distribution in the procurement process but also security carried out by the adhoc organizers. On the other hand, facilities and infrastructure are also a determining tool for election success, as is the case with information systems such as SIREKAP, which require technical maturation of all models of equipment used.
The simultaneous conception contained in the Constitutional Court’s decision, namely Decision No. 14/PUU-XI/2013 by putting forward 6 models of simultaneous elections, which then determines which model of simultaneous elections to use is the authority of the legislators to decide. Until finally it was stated in Law No. 10 of 2016 and Law No. 7 of 2017, the implication is that all aspects that arise in these policies that are political in nature even though the overall fragility model is an efficient requirement but the need for rational distribution of performance burden arrangements and ripe. Reflecting on the simultaneous election model in 2019 with a design of 5 ballot boxes compared to what will be carried out in the simultaneous elections in February in 2024, then continuing with the implementation of the simultaneous regional elections in November in 2024, the priority must still consider the burden of the organizers elections, namely the General Election Commission, especially the ad hoc election organizers themselves in the counting and voting stages. In this era of digitalization, there is a great need for the implementation of these organizers to be assisted and facilitated by an information system (digitalization) both at each stage of the election, especially the vote counting stage, which requires much more time and effort when implemented manually.
Randi Wisnu Kusuma