Jakarta (ANTARA) - The House of Representatives' (DPR RI's) Commission II member Guspardi Gaus deemed it necessary to conduct a comprehensive study prior to making modifications to the ballot paper for the 2024 general election.

"I do support the General Elections Commission’s (KPU’s) proposal for a new ballot paper design for the 2024 general election, but an in-depth and comprehensive study on the new proposed ballot paper or voting method is necessary," Gaus stated in Jakarta, Thursday.

The DPR RI Commission II member urged the electoral commission to take into account the likely removal of candidate names from the ballot if simplification into one or two ballot papers were to be materialised to avoid any inconvenience to voters or candidates during the election.

Based on his observation of the six proposed ballot paper models, three designs merged all five ballots into one, while another three simplified the ballot into two papers.

The voters are also being offered more diverse methods to indicate their choice on the ballot paper, either by ticking, punching a small hole into the ballot, or writing their preferred candidate, he pointed out.
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According to Gaus, it should also be borne in mind that the voters were already accustomed to the simple method of jabbing the paper.

"We have used ticking (preferred candidate) method once in a previous election, but in the next election, it was reverted to the old system wherein we punch a hole in the ballot with a nail because the ticking system is prone to manipulation. Hence, the electoral commission needs to pay attention (if they decide) to revert to the ticking method and consider methods to avoid abuse of the ticking system," he emphasized.

Gaus stated that modifications to the ballot paper designs and voting methods must be followed up by amendment to the related articles in Law No. 7 of 2017 on Elections. Currently, parliamentary fractions in the DPR RI decided to not amend the election law, he remarked.

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"All modifications to the election procedures, such as simplifying the ballot papers to be used in 2024 general elections, should aim to simplify and facilitate an easier voting method for the voters," he stressed.

Gaus stated that his parliamentary commission will also invite the electoral commission and other officials related to the election conduct, including Home Affairs Minister Tito Karnavian, to public hearings during the 2021-2022 first sitting period, commencing from August 16 this year.

The election official is invited to join the public hearings to deliberate on the proposed ballot modification and voting method as well as to discuss preparations for the 2024 general election.

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Translator: Imam B, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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