Komnas HAM celebrated its first International Human Rights Day celebration on 11 December 2018 at the Royal Kuningan Hotel, Jakarta, Indonesia.
Guests from various national ministries and institutions such as the Indonesian Ministry of Agrarian and Spatial Planning; the National Police of Indonesia; the United Nations Agencies, foreign embassies, academic scholars, donors and NGOs attended the celebration.
The opening speech was delivered by Ahmad Taufan Damanik, Chairperson of the National Commission of Human Rights of Indonesia (“Komnas HAM”), who expressed his appreciation for Komnas HAM’s partners for their efforts in the promotion and protection of human rights in Indonesia.
“The event today will discuss three thematic areas of focus which we plan to include in the report and recommendations that we will present to the President of Indonesia at our Human Rights Day 2018 celebration tomorrow. Komnas HAM greatly appreciates the efforts of our staff and partners, and we will continue to address human rights violations according to our projections for 2019,” Taufan said.
The introduction was followed up by a short plenary discussion, which included a “Question and Answers” session. Guests of the plenary discussion included Taufan Damanik, Minister of Agrarian and Spatial Planning - Sofyan Djalil, Governor of National Resilience Institute- Agus Widjojo, and Head of Legal Division of the National Police of Indonesia- Mas Guntur Laupe.
The four guest speakers each shared their experiences of their respective field of expertise as an introduction to the parallel discussions which followed.
With regards to intolerance, Laupe cautioned that “Intolerance is the root cause of radicalism. If radicalism is not detected and stopped, it will develop into violent extremism”.
He added, “Indonesia must carefully monitor social media platforms to ensure that it is not used to disseminate radical propaganda and messages of intolerance.”
Following Laupe, on the discussion regarding past gross human rights violations, Agus Widjojo suggested that “Institutions and regulators must collectively develop an effective system to determine key elements which would assist in the success of prosecuting actors of past gross human rights violations.”
Additionally, Agus Widjojo further suggested that state actors must establish a mechanism which would streamline the judicial prosecution of perpetrators of past gross human rights violations.
Sofyan Djalil discussed the present situation in Indonesia and advised that the government needs to collectively improve the certification system with regards to agrarian conflicts.
“We need to find a way to make the process more systematic and ensure that victims and locals are afforded the right to their land.” Additionally, “the Ministry is trying to establish policies which would assist farmers access their rights to training, and the capital needed to support their livelihood”.
Laupe supported this by adding that the National Police of Indonesia will assist in resolving agrarian related conflicts.
Taufan Damanik concluded the first plenary discussion by presenting Komnas HAM’s projections for 2019.
“We must be weary of possible political instability in 2019 due to the Presidential Elections. However, Komnas HAM will continue to work hard to promote and protect the rights of all Indonesians. We hope that with the support of all our partners, Indonesia will see steady improvement in the coming years,” Taufan said. (Jeff)