Vindry Florentin, Jakarta – Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras) deputy coordinator Feri Kusuma says that President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's statement on the banned Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) at the TNI's (Indonesian military) anniversary was inappropriate.
"It will instead create problems", said Feri at his office in Jakarta on Friday October 5.
Feri said that the PKI ceased to exist decades ago and it will not reemerge as a party. The Law and Human Rights Ministry would never allow the formation of the party on the grounds that its ideology is not in accordance with the state ideology of Pancasila.
When speaking about ideology, Feri noted that there is no evidence that the PKI still exists and the TAP MPR still prohibits Marxist, Communist and Leninist ideology.
In addition to this, Feri says there are misguided ideas about the PKI. The party is still deemed as being guilty of the September 30 Movement coup in 1965 and was annihilated down to its roots.
Meanwhile there is evidence which in fact shows that the army was the mastermind behind the 1985 affair.
According to Feri, Widodo must straighten out the assumptions about the PKI before stating that he wants to eradicate the PKI and communism. He suggests that the government reveal the truth behind the 1965 affair.
"In what way did the PKI commit crimes, who were the victims", he said. The debate about the PKI can be resolved by revealing the truth.
Feri said that Widodo has been influenced by the issue of the PKI and communism which always emerges in the lead up to political events. According to Feri, the issue has the potential to create disunity in the nation. Raising the issue also makes it even harder to achieve justice and fulfill the rights of the victims of 1965-66.
During his address to commemorate the 73rd anniversary of the TNI in Cilangkap, East Jakarta on Friday October 5, Widodo called on the TNI to eliminate communist ideology and the legacy of the PKI.
"As the highest commander of the navy, air force and army, my duty together with you is to preserve the NKRI [Unitary State of Republic of Indonesia], Pancasila, the 1945 Constitution and Bhineka Tunggal Ika [Unity in Diversity]. Together, we fight against ideologies other than Pancasila and eradicate communism and legacy of PKI", he said.
Widodo also took the opportunity to remind those present that the principal duty of TNI personnel is to firmly uphold the officer's oath for the sake of making the TNI more professional.
A professional TNI that supports democracy and national development as well as firmly upholding the principals of a political state such as the order of Indonesia's first military commander General Sudirman. He also called on the TNI to be on guard against all efforts to undermine the NKRI and Pancasila by both domestic and foreign threats.
Tap MPRS XXV/1966 – Provisional People's Consultative Assembly Decree Number XXV/1966 on the Dissolution of the Indonesian Communist Party and Prohibitions on Marxist, Leninist and Communist Teachings.
[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the article was "KontraS: Pernyataan Jokowi Soal PKI Sudah Tidak Relevan".]