Political Promise to Give Alm. Suharto a Title of National Hero is an Effort to Perpetuate the Impunity and Returning the New Order [Orde Baru] Regime
During 2014 election campaign, Prabowo promised to give the title of National Hero for Suharto, once he becomes president. Prabowo’s statement was re-affirmed by Gerindra party, through Fadli Zon [June 4, 2014] who stated the importance of endorsing Suharto as national hero.
Political attitude and promise to give a title of National Hero for Suharto obviously hurt the reformation process. By making Suharto a national hero, students, youth, human rights activists, anti-corruption fighter, reformer and public figures who participated in overthrowing Suharto will be regarded as the villain, because Suharto was the hero.
Political promise to give title of National Hero for Suharto would perpetuate impunity in Indonesia since it will make the victims of human rights violations blamed as villain who don’t need human rights court. In fact, the victims of human rights violations are the actual heroes of reformation since by their bloods; we enjoy the space of freedom like today.
Such political promise hurts the victims of human rights violations who persistently standing in front of the presidential palace to urge the state to resolve human rights violation cases. Thus, the attitude of Prabowo is worth to be condemned and rejected.
Political attitude of Prabowo who promised to give a title of National Hero is suspected and feared that he is willing to build the same style of government like in Suharto's era or new-order’s regime [Orde Baru] .
It is important to keep in mind, that Suharto’s government was characterized by authoritarian practices, corruption, militaristic action, discrimination, drowned Indonesia in debt/loans, invited foreign companies to exploit natural wealth of Indonesia and also various human rights violations.
We recorded various cases of human rights violations were innumerable, some of them are:
- Mass murder of people who "allegedly" communist (1965-1966)
- Tanjung Priok (1984)
- Talangsari, Lampung (1989)
- Marsinah labor activist murder case and Nipah reservoir case (1993)
- Banning of Print Media (1994)
- Attack in PDI headquarters, July 27, 1996
- Kidnapping of pro-democracy activists (February-March 1998)
- Trisakti Tragedy (May 12, 1998]
- Riots in May '98 (May 13-15, 1998)
- Timika case (May 1998)
- Military Operation Area (DOM) in Aceh (1989-1998)
- Semanggi I Tragedy (13 November 1998)
For that reasons, we assert that the hero tittle for Alm Suharto is opposing the constitution, legislation and Republic of Indonesia’s commitment to uphold human rights and solve cases of corruption involving Alm.Suharto. Thus, political promise made by presidential candidate who wants to give a hero for Suharto have to be condemned and rejected.
That Indonesian Consultative Assembly [MPR] decree No. XI/MPR/1998 on combating corruption firmly against anyone, whether government officials, former government officials, family, cronies, and private parties or conglomerate including President Suharto.
That the State, under the leadership of Suharto has made irregularities and misappropriation of such laws. Numerous practices of authoritarian, repressive, corruption, militaristic and human rights violations occurred during Suharto's leadership.
That the death of Alm. HM. Suharto in 2008, would simply only abort its legal obligations, but not the legal proceedings against human rights violations and grave human rights violations and corruption, especially those involving cronies.
That the granting of a National Hero is not only procedural issue, but the people's interests and intent regarding the future of the nation. And the title hero is worthy to be given only for people who have integrity and clean from any corruption, violence and other fraud actions.
- That the hero award to Suharto Alm will hurt the feelings of victims and their families.
Jakarta, June 8th 2014
Koalisi Melawan Lupa [Coalition Agains Forgotten]