Jakarta (ANTARA) - Political observer at Andalas University Asrinaldi firmly believes that acting regional heads, appointed by the government ahead of the Regional Head Election (Pilkada) 2024, should have an understanding of the process of democracy, especially pertaining to public participation in an election.

According to Asrinaldi, the person to assume the role of regional head should be one, who can encourage active participation of the people within the democratic process.

"Usually, (officials) from the army or the police would have an easier time mobilizing the masses," he noted when contacted by ANTARA from here on Monday.

The government, starting from 2022, would have to appoint more than 200 acting regional leaders ahead the simultaneous elections in 2024, to avoid power vacuum in 24 provinces and 247 districts/municipalities.

However, Asrinaldi said, despite the fact that the army and police are more adept at mobilizing masses, an aspect of neutrality should be taken into account when anyone from these two institutions becomes an acting regional head.

On the flip side, regional heads, hailing from a civil organization and having an understanding of the programs or activities to increase people's participation within the political sphere, can collaborate with the army or police to help mobilize the masses, he noted.

"This is because if they do not understand the process of democracy, it would be hard to encourage the people's participation (within the Pilkada 2024)," Asrinaldi elaborated.

To this end, regardless of whether the acting regional head was from the army or police, or was a civilian, he/she should understand the process of democracy and the condition of a region, whether it is conflict-prone, only then can that person be the right one to lead.

If a region is considered an area that is vulnerable to conflicts, then someone from the army or the police would be the right person to lead that region, he stated.

"It is important to ensure that acting regional heads understand democracy. We hope that there would be an open and inclusive contest, as well as active participation from the people for the Pilkada in 2024," he affirmed.

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Translator: Putu Savitri, Fadhli Ruhman
Editor: Sri Haryati
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