Mon, 24 Jan 2000

Protectors of reform

The people have been confused to see the annoyance and irritation expressed by some members of the community at the government's policies on various national tragedies that have claimed thousands of lives, for example, in Ambon, for example. They see they are the protectors of the reform drive and also a trigger for the organization of a rally of one million Muslims at the national monument park in central Jakarta. Obviously this is not good political education.

One side has said that it was merely a "warning" while the other considered it an attempt to depose someone from power. One said the rally took place spontaneously while the other considered it a planned mobilization. And the people have also voiced different comments. If the rally was intended only to "warn" someone, why were millions of Muslims invited to attend? On the other hand, if someone feels that the rally was an attempt to him from power, why didn't he ask the other party to sit at the same table and discuss things amicably? Both sides know each other well enough, don't they? Why, then, must the "warning" be put across to millions of Muslims through various print and electronic media? As such, it will only trigger restlessness everywhere, won't it? Only God knows the truth, while this world is only a stage.

Some people are of the opinion that the recent crisis is the logical consequence of a political "covert union" between two opposite political aspirations for the sake of transient pleasure. Sharp differences of opinion have emerged although these people/parties are in the same boat. So, whether or not the boat is shaken, the boat is already in an unstable condition.

An obvious example is that the President, in his capacity as the supreme commander-in-chief of the Military, expressed his approval of a referendum in Aceh, but the minister of laws and legislation stated that there would not be any referendum in Aceh. So, who enjoys the greater power according to constitutional law in this country? Obviously, the people, as the protectors of the reform drive, have become all the more perplexed to witness this kind of political "education".