Sabtu , 09 November 2013, 22:05 WIB

KontraS criticizes absent of public participation in BDF

Red: Julkifli Marbun
 Sejumlah kepala negara berfoto bersama menteri-menteri dan delegasi peserta Bali Democracy Forum (BDF) V di Nusa Dua, Bali, Kamis (8/11).   (Antara/Nyoman Budhiana)
Sejumlah kepala negara berfoto bersama menteri-menteri dan delegasi peserta Bali Democracy Forum (BDF) V di Nusa Dua, Bali, Kamis (8/11). (Antara/Nyoman Budhiana)

REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA --The Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KontraS) has questioned the purpose of the Bali Democracy Forum (BDF), following the sixth annual meeting which was held in Bali from November 7-8, 2013.

Kontras is challenging the purpose of the BDF and its impact on the improvement of the democratic situation in Indonesia, its Working Body Coordinator, Haris Azhar, said in an open letter on Saturday. Azhar raised a question as to whether the purpose of the Bali Democracy Forum was primarily to embody democracy or to improve the economy.

Since the beginning of BDF, initiated by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in 2008, the forum was conducted annually, with the stated aim of strengthening democracy through interstate discussions.

But Haris Azhar opined that it was merely an international event, without concrete follow-up by the government afterward. In his view, the BDF was nothing more than a high-level discussion, with bilateral agreement among the many heads of state and government who participated in the forum.

"If we ask a practical question about what kind of decisions and conclusions emerge from the forum to improve democracy in the participating countries, the answer will be very disappointing," he said. He noted that KontraS doubted the effectiveness and advantages of the forum, mainly because of the lack of public participation.

"As we know, democracy is a form of government implemented by the people and for the people, and not by the government for the nation. Therefore, the Bali Democracy Forum should have provided significant room for public participation," he noted.

Further, Azhar expressed his hope that the BDF could be a place to answer the questions and expectations of the people in solving various democratic problems in the country.

Sumber : Antara

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