Rahel Narda Chaterine, Jakarta – The Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras) has criticised President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's state of the nation address to the People's Consultative Assembly's (MPR) annual session at the parliamentary complex on Monday August 16.
Kontras Coordinator Fatia Maulidiyanti said that Widodo's speech yesterday was just a gimmick and empty talk while he surrounds himself with human rights violators.
"So I feel that yesterday's speech was just a gimmick and empty talk because it was not accompanied with adequate implementation from President Jokowi and his officials while cronies and human rights criminals are still alongside him", said Maulidiyanti during a virtual discussion on Tuesday August 17.
According to Maulidiyanti, in the last two years the issue of human rights has no longer been included in Widodo's state of the nation speeches.
She believes that this also represents a sign that indeed human rights are not actually prioritised by the government. "What is indeed actually reflected is that human rights issues are never prioritised", she said.
Maulidiyanti then highlighted Widodo's decision to give the 1st Class Star of Service (Jasa Bintang Utama) medal to former East Timorese pro-integration militia figure Eurico Gutteres.
According to Maulidiyanti, Gutteres was one of the worst human rights violators in East Timor. "Jokowi instead gave an award to this gross human rights violator", she said.
She also said that Widodo's has in the past also shown appreciation to other human rights violators.
Moreover, she said, a number of gross human rights violators have in fact been given posts and strategic position in the current administration. Yet, emphased Maulidiyanti, these human rights violators should instead be tried in court.
"There's [Defense Minister] Prabowo, [former Coordinating Minister for Security, Politics and Legal Affairs] Wiranto, [former presidential advisor] Hendropriyono and others who were people or principle actors in past gross human rights violations who have been given sanctuary in Jokowi's midst", said Maulidiyanti.
According to Maulidiyanti, if gross human rights violators are still free and placed in the ranks of the current administration's leadership, it will be very difficult to form an ad hoc Human Rights Court.
In addition to this, Maulidiyanti also highlighted the government's lack of commitment in resolving gross human rights violations.
Because, she said, restoration related to gross human rights violations cannot just cover providing compensation and guarantees that there will not be a repeat of the incidents. The government must also reveal the truth and try human rights violators in court.
"So there is no commitment as a whole and this is lip service to the victims of pass gross human rights violations to resolve cases of gross human rights violations", she said.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Kontras: Pidato Kenegaraan Jokowi Hanya Gimik Selama Ada Pelanggar HAM di Sekitarnya".]