TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Researcher at the Institute for Social and Economic Research, Education, and Information (LP3ES), Wijayanto, said the establishment of the 2020 Regional Head Election or Pilkada would be redeemed with huge social and political costs.
He argued there are three risks if the simultaneous election is continued to be held amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
"Insisting to hold the Pilkada in 2020 is not only against the public aspirations but also a scandal for democracy as it has the potential to turn into ‘a mass suicide’ that is led by political elites," said Wijayanto in a webinar on Wednesday, September 16, 2020.
The first risk is, he explained, the lives of tens of millions of people who are possible to contract Covid-19. Besides, poor disseminations will sacrifice the quality of general elections and democracy. The last risk is the declining public trust in political officials.
"So the accumulation of fatalities and the drop in public trust that follows will be a dark record for our democracy which is experiencing a setback today,” said Wijayanto.
To date, Wijayanto continued, there are at least 60 prospective candidates for the 2020 Regional Head Election who tested positive for Covid-19. "Possible crowds (in the election) also have the potential of virus transmission among millions of voters," he said.