Social Media Bots Tries to Discredit Students' Protest at DPR



Petir Garda Bhwana

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Hundreds of university students on Monday from a wide range of campuses in Indonesia marched to protest at the House of Representatives (DPR) demanding the completion of the country’s reform.

    This major protest was sparked by the government and DPR’s insistence to amend a number of Draft Bills many consider premature and troublesome. Three most prominent ones are the revised law No.30/2002 overseeing the corruption eradication commission (KPK), the criminal code draft bill (RKUHP), and the draft bills on land.

    University of Indonesia’s students’ executive board Manik Marganamahendra maintains that there are four restoration agendas that must be done in order to complete Indonesia’s reform agenda.

    “We demand the completion of the reformation agenda. Four restorations exist that need to be met,” said Manik at the Senayan parliamentary complex on Monday, September 23.

    The four agendas he refers to are; restoring the fulfillment of people’s democratic rights, human rights, and to form opinions; restoring the protection towards natural resources and agrarian reform; restoring the nation’s unity; and lastly restoring the eradication on corruption.

    Manik also mentioned anti-discrimination against ethnic groups and the protection of women’s rights.

    Unfortunately, a narrative spreading across social media platforms accuses the students’ movement at the DPR headquarters as an attempt to impeach the president or prevent the inauguration of Joko Widodo or Jokowi.

    Many bot accounts can be found trying to steer people’s opinion away from what is actually being fought for by university students. A narrative has even appeared to defame them as mere-opposition supporters trying to payback losses in the country’s presidential election earlier this year.

    Tempo’s own field observation throughout the students’ protests proved not one single student demanded the impeachment of President Jokowi but rather stayed consistent with the restoration of Indonesia’s reform agenda demanded against DPR members.