PWYP Indonesia Press Release
To be publish on January 20, 2019

Jakarta – Thursday night (17/01) Presidential and Vice-Presidential Candidates (Capres/Cawapres) have undergone the inaugural candidate debates of the five series of debates to be held in accordance with the mandate of Law Number 7 of 2017 concerning General Elections (Election Law), which was facilitated by the General Election Commission (KPU) with the theme of Law, Human Rights (HAM), Corruption, and Terrorism. In general, the public considered the first edition of the candidate’s debate to be bland and not very interesting.

A number of substance and technical issues are suspected to be the cause of the debate going rigid and less authentic. Starting from the lattice of questions that have been “given” first, which led to answers that seemed to be “memorized” from both candidates; panelist questions are very general, normative and lacking in depth, and the format of the debate still looks rigid. The result was the answer delivered by Candidate Pair serial number 01, Joko Widodo (Jokowi)-Ma’ruf Amin and candidate pair number 02, Prabowo Subianto-Sandiaga Uno became “Far Roasted from Fire” and even seemed like a speech. Even though the moderator has warned many times, this is a debate, not a speech. Maryati Abdullah, Indonesia’s National Publish What You Pay (PWYP) Coordinator, delivered a number of fundamental evaluations of the first candidate debate. “The candidate debate is still far from expectations.

Submission of vision and mission and the program put forward by the two Candidate Pairs (Paslon) seemed to be stiff, less expressive, indented less deeply, so that the emotional bond between the candidate pair and the voters to build together the vision-mission, ideas and ideas, became less. This could be due to the lattices that have been given, so Paslon is more likely to look at the preparation materials, and impressed with the speech rather than expressing the contents of ideas in an authentic, flowing, and interesting.

“The panelists should have the space to ask deepening questions from what the two Paslon put forward, so that truly control over the issue can be drawn from the couple’s exposure. this also became a challenge for the success team of the two candidates. The hope is that this will really be realized in the next debate. ”

Aryanto Nugroho, Advocacy Manager of PWYP Indonesia, a civil society coalition consisting of more than 30 civil society organizations throughout Indonesia, which focused on issues of transparency and accountability in extractive industry governance, in the prior / before the debate, gave 9 challenges to the two pairs of Presidential and Vice-Presidential Candidates to be able to elaborating further in the inaugural candidate debate. The 9 issues include: 1) Corporate Snareers: Corporate Crime Actors (Corruption, Tax Drafters, Forest & Environmental Destruction and Money Laundering Players); 2) Stop the Criminalization of Human Rights Activists, Environmental Activists and Anti-Corruption; 3) Strengthen Not Weak Corruption Eradication Commission; 4) Eradicate Oil & Gas Mafia & Mining, Forest & Environmental Mafia; 5) Develop an Integrated Corruption Prevention System and Integrity; 6) Prevent Conflicts of Interest & State Capture; 7) Close Tax Leakage and PNBP SDA Sector; 8) Implement Law Enforcement in the SDA Sector through a multi door approach; 9) Pursue the Beneficial Ownership (Acting Connoisseurs) Perpetrators of Crimes of Natural Resources.

The nine (9) issues should be relevant and very important to be resolved by the two candidates for president-vice-presidential candidates, especially the natural resource sector (SDA) which is one of the strategic sectors that must be free from corruption and human rights violations.

In fact, these issues were forgotten or perhaps deliberately be forgotten by both candidates. Both candidates only made rhetorical and normative statements that were far from the root of the problem. In the issue of human rights, the two candidates did not mention the issues related to the criminalization of human rights defenders, environmental activists, as well as anti-corruption activists and academics.

The fate of Salim Kancil and Indra Pelani, for example, were found dead. Budi Pego in Banyuwangi and a number of Kendeng residents who refused mining activities led to criminalization. Or 723 cases of criminalization of environmental fighters during the last 5 (five) years recorded by WALHI, such as “unimportant” issues.

In the context of anti-corruption, both candidates are “trapped” with surface issues that are very conventional, ranging from reforming bureaucratic recruitment and law enforcement oriented to “salary increases and benefits”. However, the problem of corruption is very basic and becomes an enemy of this nation, namely “state capture corruption”, including in the issue of natural resources, not in the spotlight.

The fact of corruption in the SDA sector involves many officials at various levels, ranging from Ministers, Members of Parliament, SKK Migas Heads, Governors, Regents to other ASNs, along the extractive industry process chain, making the future of the SDA sector very “blurry”.

Moreover, typology of natural resource crimes in Indonesia involving mining mafia, oil and gas mafia, forest mafia and environmental mafia that are interconnected with bureaucratic mafias and political oligarchies, will not be resolved with the jargon “law enforcement is not selective”, “if we lead corruptors it will we brush it out “, but how? The Perfect political corruption, structural and systematic, which is very difficult to be touched by law enforcement is missed by both candidates.

Contemporary law enforcement issues such as Corporate Crime, Money Laundering, Tax Crimes, KPK Strengthening, Conflict of Interest in the SDA Sector, are apparently not yet (not) the focus of the two candidates, both in the first candidate debate yesterday, including the candidate’s vision and mission document submitted to the candidate KPU.

PWYP Indonesia hopes that in the next candidate debate, the Candidate Debate Organizer (in this case the KPU) can present a forum that is able to bring prospective leaders closer to their potential voters. And what is important, the input for both candidates must be able to translate their visions clearly, straightforwardly and no longer normative answers.

PWYP Indonesia appreciates the KPU for listening to public input and promises to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the running of the presidential candidate debate. PWYP Indonesia proposes that the KPU conducts a broad selection of questions to all stakeholders such as business actors, affected communities and related experts. Related to the 2nd candidate debate with the theme Energy and Food, Natural Resources and Environment, Infrastructure; PWYP Indonesia proposes a number of issues that should be elaborated by the two Paslon, namely energy security which includes access, equity, price and infrastructure; natural resource management includes licensing, land and forest governance, community rights and downstream issues; business rents and corruption; climate change adaptation and mitigation; and economic diversification and accelerated energy transition to renewable energy.

Contact Person:
Maryati Abdullah (
Aryanto Nugroho (