Bogor: Opposition is mounting to the controversial MD3 law newly passed by the House of Representatives with strong rejection from Indonesian journalists.
At least 146 journalists of various media platforms issued a statement on Thursday rejecting the law, which they said a threat to the freedom of the press.
The law, which gives the parliament power to summon anyone by force and provides immunity for the lawmakers, already drew wide public protest including from legal experts.
"The law was designed to protect the lawmakers from legal investigations especially by the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK)," a journalist said.
The Parliament has been seen as one of the most corrupt agencies in the country. Hundreds of lawmakers including members of the regional legislative assemblies have been charged and arrested by KPK with corruption The 147 journalists issued the statement in closing a meeting on Socialization of Awareness of Constitutional Right held by the Constitutional Court in cooperation with the Press Council in Puncak, Bogor on Thursday.
"We reject validation of the MD3 law as it is a potential threat to the freedom of the press and the constitutional rights of the people," Fernandus Yusi Adam, a journalist from Manado, said reading the statement.
President Joko Widodo has indicated he would not give his approval for the law but in 30 days after the parliamentary approval it would be effective regardless of the presidential approval as the Law and Human Rights Minister representing the government already put his signature on the law.
The journalists called for wider support for their rejection of the draft law.
Deputy Chairman of the Constitutional Court Anwar Usman said he could not give comment on the law , but he said the Constitutional Court already received similar statement for judicial review from three other protesters.
"The journalists are not the first and the last demanding the cancellation of the law. I would bring it and convey it to the chairman and other deputies. I am convinced they all would agree," Anwar said. (Antara)
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