House slammed for dropping sexual violence law from legislative program

Source – July 1, 2020
Jakarta Feminist activists in Jakarta demand ratification of sexual violence bill – September 1, 2019 (Antara)

Tsarina Maharani, Jakarta – National Commission on Violence Against Women (Komnas Perempuan) Commissioner Bahrul Fuad says she deplores a decision by the House of Representatives (DPR) Commission VIII to drop the Draft Law on the Elimination of Sexual Violence (RUU PKS) from the 2020 Priority National Legislation Program (Prolegnas).

According to Fuad, the DPR does not have a strong enough political commitment to provide legal certainty to the victims of sexual violence.

“We think that the difficulties in deliberating [the law] are because of a lack of political will to provide justice to victims”, said Fuad when contacted on Wednesday July 1.

Fuad said that the current data on sexual violence shows the reality that the number of cases is rising every day.

Fuad stated that the decision by Commission VIII is extremely disappointing because they have long been pushing for the RUU PKS to be completed.

“Right now based on the results of a Komnas Perempuan survey during the Covid-19 pandemic, the rate of KDRT [domestic violence] is going up, including the rate of sexual violence as part of this”, she said.

“I think that what was done by Commission VIII totally conflicts with the public’s wishes, who have long hoped that the problem of sexual violence will soon find legal certainty”, continued Fuad.

Because of this, Fuad also feels surprised as to why the DPR feels that it is difficult to deliberate the RUU PKS and has decided to remove it from the 2020 Priority Prolegnas.

She is calling on the DPR leadership to immediately fulfill its pledge to finish the RUU PKS as a form of support by the state for victims of sexual violence.

According to Fuad, if the Commission VIII is incapable of deliberating the RUU PKS then it can be transferred to one of the DPR’s auxiliary bodies such as the Legislative Body.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Komnas Perempuan Sesalkan RUU PKS Ditarik dari Prolegnas Prioritas”.]