Class action launched against the president over Aceh

Source – August 4, 2003
SPR spokesperson Habiburokhman (Konfrontasi)
SPR spokesperson Habiburokhman (Konfrontasi)

Nurul Hidayati, Jakarta –- The presidential decree authorising a military emergency in Aceh is being challenged by the People’s Lawyers Union (Serikat Pengacara Rakyat, SPR). The class action against President Megawati, the speaker of the People’s Consultative Assembly, Akbar Tandjung, and TNI [armed forces] chief General Endriartono Sutarto is to be held at the Central Jakarta state court on Jl. Gajah Mada.

According to the schedule, the session will open at 11am on Monday (4/8/2003). SPR’s spokesperson Habiburokhman said that what has been perpetrated by the these government officials in issuing Presidential Decree Number 28/2003 on the Military Emergency in Aceh was an illegal act.

“We want to demonstrate our rejection of the military emergency in Aceh” said Habib to via telephone.

“Many victims have already fallen, TNI soldiers and our police, as well as ordinary civilians. They should not fall victim just because this bankrupt government is incapable of finding a peaceful solution to resolve the problem in Aceh, the war must be stopped”, added Habib.

Habib predicted that there was a possibility that this session would be the first and also the last. “If the judge refuses to [allow] the trial to continue, we will ask the judge to give advise [on what steps we can take next], that is what we will request”, he said.

Habib’s pessimism was because in the class action against BBM [the recent price increases to fuel] suffered the same fate. It failed mid-way because it was rejected by the judge. (nrl)

[Translated by James Balowski.]