The latest request for a judicial review of the age limit provisions for presidential candidates (capres) or vice presidential candidates (cawapres) has been submitted again to the Constitutional Court (MK), this time by a group of students from Solo. Previously, a number of political parties and regional heads also filed almost the same lawsuit regarding the presidential age limit for presidential candidates and vice presidential candidates, asking for a reduction in the minimum age limit from 40 years to 35.
Chairman of the National Council of the Setara Institute, Hendardi, assessed that the judicial review proposed by Solo residents was very political because the applicant asked for an interpretation and constitutional meaning of the age limit provisions to be interpreted as saying that the requirement was “40 years of age or having served as governor/regent/mayor”. In other words, Hendardi said, the applicant again took anticipatory steps if the Constitutional Court had already decided to reject a similar application in three cases that were close to being terminated.
Apart from that, said Hendardi, the Solo student does not have legal standing because the person concerned is not currently running or will be running for president. “Well, there is an indication or tendency or phenomenon to target someone or a group of people so that they continue to insist on lawsuits like this,” said Hendardi.
SETARA Institute: The Constitutional Court is not a trash basket court
According to Hendardi, the MK is the Constitutional Court, not a basket (garbage) court which can examine all cases or is the place for all citizens to seek justice. Nor is it the place of elites, by orchestrating citizens, to use this instrument of justice to seek power.
Chairman of the National Council of the Setara Institute, Hendardi (Photo: personal)
For the sake of legal certainty, Hendardi encouraged the Constitutional Court to immediately hold a plenary session to read the verdict, bearing in mind that the presidential election stage will enter the registration period on 19-25 October 2023. Delaying the reading of the verdict that has already been decided is the same as delaying justice, he stressed. Delaying justice means denying justice as per the doctrine of “justice delayed justice denied.” This means that the Constitutional Court’s decision will be meaningless for upholding constitutional life.
Speeding up the reading of the decision is also important to provide lessons for citizens and elite groups who continuously convey the argument that it seems as if the age limit for presidential/vice presidential candidates is discriminatory, so it must be interpreted differently. In fact, the Constitutional Court has long categorized the issue of regulating the age of public officials as not a constitutional issue.
The age limit for filling public positions, said Hendardi, is clearly not the authority of the Constitutional Court, but the authority of law makers, namely the DPR and the government. “That’s what I want to encourage is that the Constitutional Court immediately carry out or speed up the reading of the decision,” he stressed.
From the perspective of human rights and the constitutional rights of citizens, since the beginning the Constitutional Court has emphasized the limits of the interpretation of discrimination, which is often used as an argument and argument for testing the constitutionality of norms. Many people have misguidedly used the argument of discrimination, which is actually a form of different treatment under different conditions.
Research conducted by the SETARA Institute for ten years on the performance of the Constitutional Court and released in 2013, noted that this institution had made a broad contribution to providing limits on the meaning of the concepts of discrimination and non-discrimination.
According to Hendardi, different treatment or differentiation can be justified as long as it is not based on religion, tribe, race, ethnicity, group, class, social status, economic status, gender, language and political beliefs, and is not carried out arbitrarily and exceeds the authority of the former. Constitution.
Tulisdem: Determining Age Requirements for Leaders is Not the Authority of the Constitutional Court
A member of the Advisory Board of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem) Titi Anggraini said a similar thing. According to him, determining the age requirements for a state leader is not the authority or domain of the Constitutional Court, but of the legislators, namely the People’s Representative Council (DPR) and the government.
Titi Anggraini, Member of the Advisory Board of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem). (Courtesy: Private)
However, Titi believes that in formulating age limits, legislators should not be arbitrary. They should conduct discussions openly, transparently, accountably, and involve meaningful community participation.
“The choice of age limit must also be able to optimally accommodate the political participation of all classes and groups. “Moreover, the current anatomy of Indonesia’s population and voters, 56 percent of whom consist of those under 40 years old,” said Titi.
This should also be accommodated through the choice of age requirements that are able to accommodate the role of young people in the political realm.
Previously, the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Mahfud MD, said that the Constitutional Court did not have the authority to change a law, including the age limit for presidential and vice presidential candidates in Law No. 7 of 2017 concerning Elections.
Mahfud said, based on its authority, the MK could only cancel a law if it violated the constitution. According to him, as long as the statutory regulations do not violate the constitution, the Constitutional Court cannot cancel or change these regulations. (fw/em)