Gov’t Issues Joint Decree on State Apparatus Neutrality in 2024 Elections
The Government has issued a Joint Decree (SKB) on Guidelines for the Fostering and Supervision of Neutrality of State Civil Apparatus (ASN) in the General Elections.
The issuance of the Joint Decree is aimed at ensuring ASN’s neutrality in the general election and simultaneous regional head elections in 2024.
The Joint Decree was signed by Minister of State Apparatus Empowerment and Bureaucratic Reforms (PANRB) Abdullah Azwar Anas, Minister of Home Affairs Tito Karnavian, Acting Head of the State Civil Service Agency (BKN) Bima Haria Wibisana, Chairperson of the State Civil Apparatus Commission (KASN) Agus Pramusinto, and Chairperson of the General Elections Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) Rahmat Bagja, Thursday (09/22), at the PANRB Ministry Office, Jakarta.
“This is a very important measure to create a neutral bureaucracy that can support the Government’s agenda, one of which is the general election that will be held later,” said Minister of PANRB Abdullah Azwar Anas.
The ASN has the principle of neutrality which is mandated in Law Number 5 of 2014 on State Civil Apparatus. The Law states that civil servants are prohibited from becoming members and/or administrators of political parties. The ASN is also mandated not to take sides from any form of influence and not to take sides with anyone’s interests. Anas emphasized that if the ASN is not neutral, it will be very detrimental to the state, government and society.
“Because if the ASN is not neutral, they will become unprofessional and the government’s targets at the regional and national levels will not be achieved properly,” he said.
The ASN needs to pay attention to the potential for neutrality disturbances that can occur in every stage of the general elections and regional head elections. The potential for neutrality disturbances can occur even before the election stage, during the registration stage, the determination stage for regional head candidates, as well as at the stage after the determination of the elected regional head.
Minister of PANRB said, with a joint commitment by Ministry of PANRB, Ministry of Home Affairs, the BKN, the KASN, and the Bawaslu, it is hoped that synergy and effectiveness will be built in fostering and supervising the neutrality of ASN employees. The issuance of the decree will also make it easier for the ASN to understand things that should not be done and have the potential to violate the code of ethics or employee discipline.
“Hopefully, this decree will have a broad impact not only in the Central Government, but also in district, city and provincial governments throughout Indonesia,” he said.
Similarly, Minister of Home Affairs Tito Karnavian expressed views that the ASN is an important component of the Government to ensure the 2024 general elections and regional head elections, both at the national and regional levels.
“We already know that the Law states that the ASN cannot have practical politics because they are professionals who are the motor of Government,” said Tito.
He went on to say that the political situation may heat up but ASN must remain in a professional position and not take sides with political contestants who will compete in the general election and regional head elections. However, he underlined that this will not reduce the voting rights that the ASN has in every democratic fiesta that takes place.
“We all agree to let whoever compete at the central, regional or legislative levels to choose the best leaders. However, we, as ASN, who oversee the running of the government, must remain neutral, whoever wins,” he remarked. (Ministry of PANRB/UN) (EST/MUR)