"Apart from strictly implementing health protocols, I want that the quality of our democracy be maintained and improved," the head of state noted at the Merdeka Palace, Jakarta, Tuesday, during a virtual conference meeting to discuss preparations for holding the simultaneous regional elections.
In the wake of challenging times, Jokowi is pursuing a more mature democracy, as he called on bureaucratic personnel along with the military and police forces to maintain neutrality and not favor certain candidate pairs.
Jokowi also reminded the General Election Commission and its regional offices to not allow narratives that can trigger disunity to run wild among the public. Concurrently, the Commission is urged to make serious efforts to ensure that quality, neutral, professional, and transparent elections are held.
"Do not allow the use of language, narratives, and symbols that endanger the unity and integrity of society. Ensure no identity politics, race, religion, and inter-group (SARA) politics are practiced since they can endanger unity and integrity and hence must be prevented," he affirmed.
The president expressed belief that bodies organizing elections play significant roles in maintaining the quality of democracy and political stability, as well as how the people obtain the results of elections.
Jokowi also appealed to community and religious figures, activists, and academics in all regions to support such efforts.
Furthermore, to maintain the neutrality of civil apparatuses, several institutions, including the Ministry of Administrative and Bureaucratic Reforms and the Elections Supervisory Board, have readied a joint document on the neutrality guidelines.
Simultaneous regional elections will be held in 270 areas, including nine provinces, 224 districts, and 37 cities.
It was originally scheduled to take place on September 23 though was postponed to December in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Candidacy registrations were conducted on Sept 4-6.
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