|Home > South-East Asia >> Indoleft|
Reject the election results in Aceh and Papua: SAP
fpdra.com – April 13, 2004
Alisa P., Jakarta – On April 12, Aceh Papua Solidarity (Solidaritas Aceh Papua, SAP) held a press conference at the offices of the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (Kontras) which was attended by most of the democratic groups who are involved in SAP.
SAP coordinator Arie Arianto, who is also the head of the People’s Democratic Party’s (PRD) department of military, political and national affairs, was accompanied at the press conference by Thamrin Ananda from the central committee of the Acehnese People’s Democratic Resistance Front (Front Perlawanan Demokratik Rakyat Aceh, FPDRA) and Charly from the West Papua National Students Front (Front Nasional Mahasiswa Papua, FNMP) as well as other elements of the democratic movement in Jakarta.
SAP said they rejected the results of the elections in Aceh and Papua because they are legally flawed and do not conform to the principles of democracy. In addition to this, Arianto added that the elections in Aceh and Papua were held as a means to score votes for the former state ruling party and political parties supported by the military (the Golkar and Democratic Party). According to Arianto, in Central Aceh the Golkar Party had already marked their party on election ballots and the people arrived merely to witness the count.
In Papua meanwhile, many polling stations were burnt down by the public and this must be viewed as a rejection of the 2004 elections by the Papuan people. In addition to this many members of the public did not understand the elections issue and this was taken advantage of by the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle and Golkar for their own political interests said Charly.
Ananda added that aside from the acts of fraud by the large political parties participating in the elections in Aceh, there was also intimidation by the military to force people to go to poling stations. The military were also mobilised before voting at 8am sharp to warn people against damaging ballots. They said that if there were damaged ballot papers, the village head would be held responsible, as occurred in the Delima Pidie sub-district. For the people of Aceh, they participated in the elections simply to get their fingers marked with ink [to show that they have already voted] because if they did not vote they would be considered Free Aceh Movement sympathisers.
Ananda said that because they were forced to go to the polling stations, the Acehnese damaged ballot papers with 49.1 per cent piercing ballot papers with the words GAM and this must be seen as a form of resistance by the Acehnese people against the government.
SAP said that it totally rejects the results of the elections in Aceh and Papua as well as rejecting the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle and Golkar as the victors because they committed a number acts of fraud and have used conflict areas a places to score votes.
[Translated by James Balowski.]