APSN Banner

Disappointed with elections, pro-democracy activists hold maths lessons at KPU

CNN Indonesia - February 20, 2024

Yogyakarta – Dozens of people calling themselves the Jogja Pro-Democracy Citizens held a theatrical action in front of the regional General Elections Commission (KPU) office in the Central Java city of Yogyakarta on Tuesday February 20 as a form of protest over the 2024 elections.

The participants held a "Sinau Matematika Bersama KPU" or studying mathematics with the KPU action in which some played the role of pupils from the Stupid State Primary School who were not very good at counting, while one person played the part of the teacher.

"Siji tambah siji piro, patangatus!" (one plus one is how much, four hundred!), said one of the pupils standing in front of the drawing board.

After a long wait, the teacher arrived who then taught them how to count correctly. The class ended with the students singing a song together.

Siji telu telu (one three three)Tangane sedeku (hands held in prayer)Mirengake pak guru (listen to Mr teacher)Jo manut KPU (don't obey the KPU)

Papat nuli limo (four then five)Lenggahing sg toto (seated orderly)pemilune negoro (the country's elections)Hasil wes ditoto (the results have been arranged)

"The KPU is the Komisi Pitingane Uawur-awuran (the haphazard counting commission)", cried one of the pupils.

"Dudu (not), my KPU belongs to Uncle Usman", replied another pupil, referring to President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's brother-in-law former Constitutional Court chief justice Anwar Usman who was removed from his position for ethical violations after a ruling that paved the way for Widodo's son Gibran Rakabuming Raka to run as a vice presidential candidate in the 2024 elections.

On the Stupid State Primary School placard they included the words, "Power Chasing Program Package. Covers learning to quickly change the constitution; learn easy tips to garner election votes; learn indifference despite ethical violations; learn to use the state apparatus for the benefit of family and group political dynasties; and learn how to perpetuate power".

Agus Becak, the coordinator of the event, said the protesters who attended are not partisan. The action was held simply to voice resistance to all the forms of alleged fraud that occurred during the different stages of the 2024 legislative and presidential elections.

For them, instead of minimising the political tensions of competition, the elections actually ignited public dissatisfaction with the performance of the KPU and the Election Supervisory Board (Bawaslu).

The causes were diverse, ranging from the many findings of ballot papers that had already been marked, the lack of ballot papers, widespread money politics and the most recent allegations of irregularities in the KPU's recapitulation of the vote count.

Becak said they are questioning the KPU's Recapitulation Information System or Sirekap which suddenly and miraculously increased the votes for a certain presidential candidate pair. In fact, many counts even exceeded the number of voters.

"(The theatrical action) is a way to show that we need to teach the KPU throughout Indonesia to relearn elementary school mathematics", Becak said.

They hope that the KPU can calculate the vote recapitulation correctly and are also calling for the elections to be held again if all of the alleged fraud is in the end proven.

"We demand an honest and fair election in accordance with our constitution. If the fraud is proven, please re-hold the elections", Becak said.

The action ended with symbolic handover of mathematics textbooks to Yogyakarta province KPU chairperson Ahmad Shidqi. Shidqi said he appreciated the action which he considered to be a form of public participation in safeguarding the elections.

"This is a form of public concern over the organisation of the elections, not just on voting day be also overseeing it afterwards", said Shidqi. (kum/rds)

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Kecewa Pemilu 2024, Massa Gelar Aksi Belajar Matematika di Depan KPU".]

Source: https://www.cnnindonesia.com/nasional/20240220220314-617-1065217/kecewa-pemilu-2024-massa-gelar-aksi-belajar-matematika-di-depan-kp