Draft law on Aceh government must not be revision of special autonomy: FPDRA

Fpdra.org – November 14, 2005
FPDRA chairperson Thamrin Ananda (thamrinananda)
FPDRA chairperson Thamrin Ananda (thamrinananda)

Alisa P, Banda Aceh – The composition of the draft law on the organisation of a government for Aceh as mandated by the memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the Indonesian government and the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) should not be a revision of the special autonomy law (Otsus) or Law Number 18/2001. This was conveyed by the chairperson of the Acehnese Popular Democratic Resistance Front (FPDRA), Thamrin Ananda, in Banda Aceh on Monday November 14.

The draft of the law, which has been tendered by the regional government, and even parties, who call themselves civil society, is still strikingly similar to what is in the special autonomy law. Ananda explained that it appears from the draft that they are not composing a new draft but only revising the special autonomy law by adding points that are found in the MoU.

Furthermore said Ananda, the points in the draft are crammed with political nuance and if the if the draft is left as is then the desire to resolve the Aceh conflict permanently will face obstacles. It should be that with the MoU which mandates the formulation of a new legislation, that the special autonomy law be thrown into the rubbish bag beforehand. All of the undemocratic points and those which have the impression of serving the political interests of the past such as the implementation of Islamic law, should not be included in a future law on a government for Aceh. This is because the Aceh problem is not a problem of Islamic law.

“I therefore suggest that the legislation must contain crucial points in order to bring prosperity to the Acehnese people, such as the points on opening up job opportunities in the industrial sector as well as the agricultural sector. In addition to this, in order to be able support these two points, there must be an improvement in human resources though quality and free education for the people, the same is the case for healthcare. Other points which are extremely important are the existence of a committee to control the implementation of the law on a government for Aceh or what is often referred to as an Ombudsman”, explained Ananda.

[Translated by James Balowski.]