Manado – In the lead up to International Women's Day (IWD) on March 8, a number of organisations in Manado, North Sulawesi, have joined together in the Civil Society Coalition Against Sexual Violence (KMSAKS) to hold actions supporting the Draft Law on the Elimination of Sexual Violence (RUU PKS).
According to a press release received by Tribune, the coalition is made up of the Fighting Women's Voice (Swara Parangpuan), the Manado Alliance of Independence Journalists (AJI), the Legal Aid Foundation (LBH), the Women's Alliance for Theological Education in Indonesia (Peruati), the Indigenous Peoples Alliance of the Archipelago (AMAN), the North Sulawesi Indonesian Mercy Community (KBI), the Indonesian People's Dian Foundation (YDRI), the North Sulawesi Child Protection Foundation (LPA), the Minahasa Enlightened Voice Foundation (YSNM) and the Indonesian Women's Coalition (KPI).
Nur Hasanah from Fighting Women's Voice said that the collation will hold a series of activities to articulate their support for the RUU PKS along with rejecting sexual violence and harassment against women and children in any and all forms.
"We will hold joint discussions with student and mass organisations which are part of the KMSAKS coalition about the RUU PKS which is still being opposed by some groups of people because they believe it supports free sex and deviant sexual behaviour", said Hasanah.
Yet, said Aryati Rahman from LBH, the RUU PKS is aimed at preventing and ending sexual violence which includes rape, forced prostitution, sexual enslavement and torture in the home, the workplace and in public. "This will become our struggle", she said.
AJI Manado chairperson Yinthze Lynvia Gunde meanwhile said that AJI joined the coalition so that journalists could support the movements fighting violence against women and children.
"AJI itself is very concerned about and supports the movements [fighting] violence against women and children as well as gender [issues]. Particularly by providing space for reporting it in the media", she said.
The three activists hope that that there will be more social organisations as well as individuals that will join the coalition so that they can campaign collectively to urge the House of Representatives (DPR) and the government to produce legislation, regulations and local bylaws which side with women and children.
"We hope that that there will be more social organisations as well as individuals that will join the coalition in order that there is no more sexual violence against women and children", they said. (dma)
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Bentuk Koalisi, Sejumlah Ormas Desak RUU Penghapusan Kekerasan Seksual Disahkan".]