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With 52 Percent of Young Voters, College Students Are Expected to Ensure an Honest and Open 2024 Election

Universitas Indonesia > News > Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, News > With 52 Percent of Young Voters, College Students Are Expected to Ensure an Honest and Open 2024 Election

Entering the 2023 political year, the public is required to have active awareness to oversee the general election process that is honest, open, and with integrity. This active participation is especially aimed at young voters, including college students, who will dominate the electoral vote in the 2024 elections. Based on data from the General Election Commission (KPU) Permanent Voter List in July 2023, 52 percent of the 2024 voters are young voters. Voters aged 17-30 years reached 31.23 percent or around 63.9 million people, and voters aged 31-40 years reached 20.7 percent or around 42.4 million people.

“Public participation, especially college students as agents of change, has contributed to shaping a better future for Indonesia,” said Harry Ara Hutabarat, S.H., M.H as Commissioner of the DKI Jakarta Province Information Commission (KI). In a speech entitled “Student Participation in the 2024 Open Elections” Monday (02/10) which was held at the Auditorium of the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences (FISIP) Universitas Indonesia (UI), Harry emphasized that students as young, educated voters must have enough information and can communicate with election management bodies.

Even though they are very familiar with the digital world, students’ knowledge regarding elections and the track records of presidential and legislative candidates is still minimal. Harry revealed that all elements of society should know, recognize, and directly monitor the implementation of public information disclosure in accordance with the mandate of Law (UU) No. 14 Year 2008 concerning Public Information Disclosure, namely increasing the active role of the community in making public policies and good management of public bodies or Good governance.

According to Prof. Dr. Ibnu Hamad, M.Pd, UI Professor and Public Information Management Officer (PPID) of the Ministry of Education and Culture (Kemendikbud) for the 2011-2014 period, information related to the election is already available. However, students’ awareness of accessing this information via the KPU website still needs to be increased because every vote that is casted determines Indonesia’s future.

Apart from needing to know information related to elections and becoming voters, college students are also expected to be able to take a direct role in the process of organizing elections by becoming election officials. “The policy of being an election official at a polling place (TPS) is that you must be at least 17 years old. I believe that college students have sufficient integrity to be involved in collecting public votes and maintaining the clarity of voters’ votes to prevent them from being cheated by manipulative practices,” said the Trustee of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem), Titi Anggraini, S.H., M.H.

According to Titi, although Indonesian people’s participation in elections is always high, voters’ votes are often meaningless, because there are many voting procedures that are invalid and contain fraud, including the practice of buying and selling votes, inflating votes, and even changing the results of vote recapitulation in sub-district level. To reduce fraudulent practices, students need to control their own votes responsibly and know where to report if they witness cheating.

The talk show “Student Participation in the 2024 Open Elections” is an initiative of KI DKI Jakarta Province together with FISIP UI, to encourage students to increase their participation and contribution to honest and open elections. This event was also held to commemorate International Right to Know Day, which is celebrated every September 28.

The International Right to Know celebration aims to increase public awareness that they have the right and freedom to access public information. The right to information is essential because it can pave the way for ensuring the implementation of other human rights, such as the right to education, the right to live in prosperity, the right to live in safety and other citizens’ rights.

Dr. Hendriyani, S.Sos., M.Si as Chair of the Communication Science Department, FISIP UI, thanked the KI of DKI Jakarta Province for organizing this activity and helping to increase awareness of public openness. She said, “The right to know is something that is important to know as part of the rights of all of us, and college students are people who have the ability and potential to disseminate information further to the general public.” Also speaking at this talk show were Dr. Ummi Salamah, S.Psi., Psychologist., M.Si, FISIP UI teaching staff; and Prof. Effendi Gazali MPS ID., Ph.D.

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