Survey finds drastic decline in people who think elections were honest and fair

Source – February 25, 2024
Voters place ballots in ballot boxes at polling station – Undated (Kompas)

Novianti Setuningsih, Jakarta – The Indonesian Survey Institute (LSI) says that the level of public trust in the honesty and fairness (jurdil) of the 2024 general elections has plummeted a week after the vote on February 14.

This was one of the findings of a post-election survey conducted by the LSI on February 19-21.

In the post-election survey, the number of respondents who believe that the 2024 elections proceeded in an honest and fair manner was only 76.4 percent. Yet on voting day, the figure stood at 94.3 percent.

LSI Executive Director Djayadi Hanan said this sharp decline can be regarded as severe.

"There has been a decline in the level of public confidence in the jurdil (honesty, fairness) of the election process when seen from this data", said Hanan during an online release of the LSI's findings on Sunday February 24.

"The decline is almost 20 percent. A decline that is very significant", he continued.

Broken down, the number of respondents who considered the implementation of the 2024 elections to be "very honest and fair" plummeted from 45.5 percent to 17.6 percent.

This difference does not compensate for the number of respondents who consider the implementation of the elections to be quite honest and fair, which only rose to 58.8 percent from the previous 48.8 percent.

Of the remainder, an additional 8.1 percent of respondents consider the 2024 elections to be less than honest and fair, as well as 4.8 percent of respondents who considered it to be not honest and fair at all.

Furthermore, Hanan revealed that the declining trend was also seen in public satisfaction with the implementation of the 2024 elections.

In the post-election survey, the level of public satisfaction in the elections reached 83.6 percent. Yet on polling day, the level of satisfaction was as high as 94.5 percent.

Hanan believes that this decline is significant because the change in the figures was quite wide in a short space of time.

"So for example, if we did a survey in another 10 days, maybe the level of satisfaction will go down again", he said.

Hanan is of the view that one of the reasons for the decline was because the public was been informed about the various controversies that accompanied the organisation of the 2024 elections through a variety of news reports.

This includes the controversy over tabulation errors in the General Elections Commission's (KPU) Recapitulation Information System (Sirekap). Then, there have also been a number of reports doing the rounds about elections being rerun in several regions.

For example, the Election Supervisory Board (Bawaslu) has recommended that 780 polling stations (TPS) must organise a revote, and the KPU has already scheduled 686 of these.

Over the same time span, the number of respondents who answered they were "less than satisfied" with the elections rose from 4.4 to 8.3 percent, and those who were "not satisfied at all" also increased sharply from 0.5 to 5.5 percent.

The LSI said that the survey target population was Indonesian citizens who are 17 years and over or who are married and have a telephone or cellphone. This represents around 83 percent of the total national population.

The sample was selected through a Random Digit Dialing (RDD) method or the technique of selecting a sample through a random telephone number generation process.

Using the RDD technique, a sample of 1,211 respondents was selected through a random telephone number generation process, validation and screening. The survey's margin of error is estimated to be around 2.9 percent with a 95 percent level of confidence.

The LSI claims that the interviews with respondents that were conducted by telephone were done by trained interviewers.

Politically, the narrative about the lack of honesty and fairness that has irreparably damaged the credibility of the 2024 election is getting stronger.

And this is not just coming from civil society groups. The political parties that supported the loosing presidential tickets of Anies Baswedan-Muhaimin Iskandar and Ganjar Pranowo-Mahfud MD have begun to be of one voice in the discourse about initiating a parliamentary right of inquiry to raise the issue.

Former Central Java governor Pranowo is already pushing the two political parties that supported him in the election  – the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) and the United Development Party (PPP) – to use the House of Representative's (DPR) right of inquiry.

According to Pranowo, the DPR cannot remain silent over the alleged election fraud that was so blatant.

"In this case, the DPR can summon state officials who know about these fraudulent practices, including asking for accountability from the KPU and Bawaslu as the election organisers", Pranowo said in a statement on February 19.

Meanwhile, the three political parties supporting Baswedan and Iskandar, the National Democrats (Nasdem), the National Awakening Party (PKB) and the Justice and Prosperity Party (PKS) are ready to support a right of inquiry in the DPR.

"We have met and discussed the steps and we are solid, because of this I want to convey, when the right of inquiry initiative is carried out these three parties are ready to participate", said former Jakarta Governor Baswedan at the Anies-Muhaimin national legal team office in Mampang Prapatan, South Jakarta, on February 20.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Survei LSI: Tingkat Keyakinan Masyarakat Pemilu 2024 Jurdil Turun Drastis Sepekan sejak Pencoblosan".]