Controversial Articles in Penal Code Law Draft Bill

20 June 2022 18:30 WIB

Members of the Association of Islamic Students (HMI) show a poster during their protest against the Draft Bill on Penal Code (RKUHP) and the new KPK Law near Slipi Bridge, Jakarta, Friday, September 27, 2019. TEMPO/M Taufan Rengganis

TEMPO.CO, JakartaThe government and the House of Representatives (DPR) were reportedly set to ratify the Draft Bill on Penal Code Law or RKUHP in the near future. This plan was widely opposed by civil society for its non-transparent drafting process. Until now, the latest draft to be legalized is not published yet.

Constitutional law expert Bivitri Susanti said the government and the DPR potentially violate the constitution if they rush the bill ratification. She argued that the draft bill should be discussed further, rather than ratified soon.

“This is not a constitutional practice,” Bivitri asserted in an online discussion held on Friday, June 17, 2022.

The draft bill circulating in the public is still the 2019 version which led to massive demonstrations in a number of cities. Here Tempo compiled controversial articles as follows:

1. Articles on insulting the President

Insulting the President and Vice President could be punished under Article 218 of the penal code law bill. The Constitutional Court (MK) has actually canceled the article given that it was a colonial heritage and violated equality before the law. Besides, it could spark a conflict of interest because such a case would be processed by the police.

2. Articles on insulting the government

Insulting the legitimate government could also be punished as it was drafted in Article 240 of the bill. It was noted that insulting the government in public which leads to riots could face a 3-year prison sentence and a fine of category IV.

3. Articles on insulting state institutions

In Article 353 of the penal code law bill, people insulting state institutions could face 1 year and 6 months prison sentence. Voicing the insult via electronic media could also be punishable.

4. Articles on Living law

Article 2 (1) and Article 598 regulate the law that lives in society. This means people could be punished if they violate the laws that apply in an area. It is feared that this article will lead to arbitrariness and discriminatory regional regulations.

5. Articles on Kumpul Kebo

Living like a buffalo out of wedlock or cohabitation or locally known as kumpul kebo was regulated in Article 417 (1). It stipulated that anyone having sexual intercourse with a person who is not his husband or wife shall be punished for adultery with a maximum imprisonment of 1 year or a category II fine.

6. Articles on the Death penalty

Articles 67, 99, 100, and 101 still noted the death penalty. Human rights observers argued that these articles should be diminished.

7. Articles on Demonstration

In Article 273 of the penal code law bill or RKUHP, anyone holding protests, marches, or demonstrations on the street without notification and causing public disturbance shall be punished with one year's imprisonment.

M ROSSENO AJI

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