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Government dissolves and bans the PRD

Tapol - October 1, 1997

[Based on reports in Kompas and Republika, 30 September 1997]

The government has at last (!) banned the People's Democratic Party (PRD) and all the organisations associated with it.

The ban was announced by Director-General for Social and Political Affairs of the Interior Ministry, accompanied by officials from the Attorney-General's Office, the social-political chief of staff of the Armed Forces, Police Force headquarters and the State Intelligence Coordination Agency, Bakin.

The ban is based on the refusal of the organisations to acknowledge the Pancasila as their guiding principle. The organisations covered by the ban are the students organisation, SMID, the trade union PPBI, the artists association Jakker, the peasants organisation STN and the Solo Peoples Union.

The Interior Ministry official said that the organisations had posed a threat to security and public order. Another reason for the ban was that the party's book, 'Towards a People's Multi-Party Democracy' had already been banned.

The ban is based on Articles 26 and 27 of Law No 8, 1985 [This is one of the five political laws which the PRD has vigorously condemned.]

The official denied that the government had ever linked the PRD to the outlawed PKI, the Indonesian Communist Party.

Asked whether other organisation are likely to be banned, the Interior Ministry official hinted that the government was considering banning other organisations including PUDI (chaired by Sri-Bintang Pamungkas), the Marhaen People's Movement and the independent trade union, the SBSI.