Fajar Pebrianto, Jakarta – The Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) continued voicing its objection against the draft of the omnibus law on job creation set by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo. To AJI, the bill tried to restore the government's control over the press as it did during the New Order era.
The assumption was made given an additional article on the imposition of sanctions for press company by a state institution through government regulation. The article was not noted in the current Law on Press.
"Either it is Communication and Informatics Ministry [who will impose the sanction] or others, we have no idea," said AJI head Asnil Bambani during a press conference at his office in South Jakarta, Thursday, February 27.
The government had submitted the drafts of the job creation bill to the House of Representatives (DPR) on February 12. Four days after, four press organizations namely AJI, the National Television Journalists Association (IJTI), the Indonesian Journalists Association (PWI), and the Legal Aid Institute for the Press (LBH Pers) objected the government's intervention towards press via the bill.
Amid the protests, Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Mahfud Md said on Tuesday, February 18, that there should be no repression against the freedom of press. He ensured that articles on the job creation omnibus bill that were considered oppressing the press will be revised.