Sunday, December 13, 2009

Indonesian Parliament Performance Portrait

By: Firdaus Arifin
Writer: Lecturer Constitutional Law Section and Secretary of Constitutional Studies Center Faculty of Law, University of Pasundan, Bandung, West Java, Indonesian.
Published by: the Daily Pikiran Rakyat, 3 Oktober 2009.

PERFORMANCE House of Representatives (DPR) 2004-2009 period, particularly in the field of legislation, very bad and disappointing. Cancellation of a number of articles in the Election Act and several other law by the Constitutional Court (MK) during 2009, indicating there was something wrong in law-making process undertaken during this Parliament. Not a bit Act resulting overlap with any other Act. All are clear evidence of lack of legislative cermatan in product mix Act into a comprehensive system and also a mirror of the poor quality of the House legislation.

When viewed in terms of quantity, the resulting Parliament Act 2004-2009 period is still far below the target of the National Legislation Program (Prolegnas). Of 284 bills (bill) which should be ratified, until the end of the House duties just completed Act 175. Parliament also less keen to establish what law should be prioritized according to the needs of the community.

Looking at this reality, as the party who gave the mandate, the people deserve disappointment. This reality provides a very valuable lesson to us. Apparently, strengthening the role and functions of the House legislation can not change the performance of the Parliament to institute a good law maker.

Pascaperubahan the 1945 fundamental changes to the legislative function of Parliament. If prior to the 1945 changes, according to Article 5 Paragraph (1) and Article 20 Paragraph (1) of the 1945 Constitution, Parliament has only a quasi-legislative function in the process of formation Act (pseudo wetgever). After the first change in the 1945 Constitution, the formula contained in Article 5 Paragraph (1) and Article 20 Paragraph (1) experienced significant changes, so the implications for Parliament as an institution placed primary law-making authority (wetgever primaire). Dominance of Parliament in the legislative process is strengthened by the presence of Article 20 Paragraph (5) of the 1945 Constitution.

When examined, at least there are three factors that cause poor performance in the field of legislation the House. First, the lack of awareness of constitutionalism from the House that the law-making process, the Parliament did not consider carefully the legal rules in the trunk of the 1945 Constitution. Supposedly, the Parliament in the Act shall make a careful attention to the 1945 Constitution.

Second, a mess of political uncertainty caused Prolegnas existing national laws. So that the end of the political interests of various parties carried more dominating in the process of making law.

Third, in carrying out the process of making the Act, the Parliament was not preceded by conducting academic research and study in depth. That, has implications for the many products produced legislation that quickly become obsolete because it was not able to follow the dynamics of the times.

There are a number of strategies to improve the function of the House legislation. First, assess and rearranging Prolegnas. Because, Prolegnas 2004 - 2009 can be said to be oriented to produce a quality law but on the quantity. This is reflected in Prolegnas 2004 - 2009 Law targeting 284. Means that each year the Parliament Act should be completed four per month. Of course this job is very hard for the Parliament House and it is impossible to produce quality legislation.

Second, should the House of Representatives prior to carrying out the process of making a first draft set of academic texts. According to Ann and Robert Siedman (2001) compilation of academic texts (the concept paper) is one important step in the process of legislation (law making process). Academic manuscript needed to explain more open to all stakeholders about the significance the presence of a bill.

Third, Parliament should be to maximize community participation. Is not the Law No. 10 Year 2004 on the Formation of legislation is determined there is an obligation to involve community participation in law-making process. In addition, the Rules and Regulations (Tatib) 139-141 Article mentions the House of Representatives, the public can provide input either verbally or in writing to Parliament within the framework of the preparation and discussion of a bill.

Fourth, the need for the Parliament to engage legal experts as a team reviewers (constitutional review panel) in any discussion of the bill. That way, House of Representatives is expected to make a legitimate product and the stronger the law can reduce the incompatibility with the Constitution of 1945. May the House of Representatives may hold the parties in accordance with the specifications competent to be made law.

Finally, we expect the House to quickly improve the quality of his work in the field of legislation. Because we do not want a law which created the House continue to reap the lawsuit, even a toy because it does not keep constitutional rights protected people in the 1945 Constitution.

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