Upholding Political Promises for the 2024 Elections in North Sulawesi Through the Voice of Democracy Channel
Various political promises on the political stage in Indonesia have always been in the spotlight leading up to the General Elections (Pemilu). Political parties (parpol) and legislative candidates with their enticing offers strive to attract the attention of the voting public. The question is, do these promises truly materialize or are they merely rhetoric to seize seats of power? It is the responsibility of the public to scrutinize them critically, knowing that often political promises are nothing more than words without real actions after the elected leaders take office.
"The role of the legislature is about rationalization, distribution, and oversight. Are political promises effective? In reality, these promises do not affect electability," said political observer and academic at the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, Sam Ratulangi University, Manado, Dr. Ferry Daud Liando, during an interview with Zonautara.com in mid-September 2023.
However, the fact remains that political promises often serve as the primary attraction for aspiring leaders during campaigns, even in the pre-candidate selection stage within political parties. They promise to address various issues facing society, from poverty to woeful infrastructure. Yet, when they assume positions of power, these promises often fade into oblivion and remain unrealized. It is high time for the public to assert that political promises must be measured by tangible evidence, not just sweet words that lead nowhere.
Honest and integrity-driven leaders should carefully consider their political promises, ensuring that they can be realized when in power. An unfulfilled political promise not only harms the people but also erodes public trust. Voters must be astute and capable of identifying realistic and credible political promises that will bring positive change to society.
In the current context, it is important to emphasize that political promises are not only a focal point during presidential or gubernatorial elections but also in legislative elections at all levels, including Regional Representatives Councils (DPRD) at the regency/city, provincial, and national levels, which will take place in the 2024 Elections. Legislative candidates from various political parties often use political promises as a tool to win voters' hearts and secure legislative seats.
As voters, it is imperative to be more discerning and wise in evaluating the political promises put forth by legislative candidates. They must understand that legislators play a vital role in lawmaking and government oversight. Therefore, the political promises they convey should be related to their efforts to improve the quality of life for the people and contribute to the progress of their region or country.
"Candidates should not need to make extravagant promises. Just one that they truly intend to fight for, considering the current system we have," added Ferry Daud Liando.
Crucial Momentum in the 2024 Elections
The 2024 Elections will be a crucial moment for Indonesian democracy, and voters have the responsibility to choose legislative candidates with integrity, capabilities, and a commitment to performing their duties effectively. Political promises should be seen as the foundation of the work programs that legislative candidates will undertake, not just empty words to gain votes. By voting wisely, we can ensure that the elected representatives genuinely represent the interests of the people and work towards the nation's progress.
"However, voters should also receive adequate political education. The same goes for party members, especially those who run as legislative candidates," said Mineshia Lesawengen, S.IP, from the Center for Electoral Studies at UNSRAT.
Furthermore, to ensure the quality of the 2024 Elections and that elected legislative candidates fulfill their political promises, voters must actively engage in the monitoring and accountability processes.
Summarized from various interviews with political observers, academics, election organizers, and the general public, here are some ideas on how voters can play a role in the 2024 Elections:
1. Research and Scrutinize: Voters need to take the time to understand the programs and political promises of legislative candidates. This involves thorough research on their track records, a deep understanding of their political visions and missions, and their ability to articulate solutions to the problems facing their region or country.
2. Participate in Debates and Open Forums: Attend debates and open forums held by legislative candidates. This is an opportunity to directly ask questions about their political promises and assess their knowledge and debating skills.
3. Examine Candidates' Career Paths: Evaluate the track records of the legislative candidates you intend to vote for. Consider their past performance, especially if they have held public office before. Have they fulfilled their political promises in the past?
4. Organize Public Discussions: Encourage the community to hold public discussions about legislative candidates and their political promises. This can help gather broader information and make better decisions.
5. Monitor Legislative Actions: After the election, continue to monitor the legislative actions of the elected representatives. Ensure that they are truly working to fulfill the political promises they made during the campaign.
6. Participate in Civil Society Organizations: Join civil society organizations focused on political transparency and accountability. This will provide access to deeper information about the performance of legislative candidates and allow you to contribute to political monitoring.
7. Use Social Media and Online Platforms: Utilize social media and online platforms to share information about political promises and the performance of legislative candidates. Collaborate with groups with similar interests.
8. Participate in Local Elections: Do not forget local elections, such as the selection of regional leaders and members of the Regional Representatives Councils (DPRD) at the regency/city level. Active involvement in these elections is also crucial to ensuring positive change at the local level.
By actively participating in monitoring and evaluating the performance of legislative candidates, voters can contribute to a healthier democratic process and ensure that elected representatives genuinely represent the public interest and fulfill their political promises.
The Voice of Democracy Channel
The initiative to establish a dedicated channel on Zonautara.com called the "Voice of Democracy Channel" is highly relevant and holds great potential for monitoring the political promises of legislative candidates during the 2024 Election campaign. The Voice of Democracy Channel allows voters to systematically and accurately record all promises made by legislative candidates, creating a record accessible to everyone.
With the "Voice of Democracy Channel," the public has a means to remind elected representatives of the political promises they made during the campaign. This will create positive pressure on lawmakers to continue to remember and strive to fulfill those promises after being elected.
Furthermore, this channel can also serve as a vital source of information for the public in the decision-making process. People can refer to the "Voice of Democracy Channel" to compare the political promises of various legislative candidates and make more informed choices.
"We greatly appreciate these positive steps that help the public make more informed decisions when choosing their representatives in the legislature. This is a crucial step in strengthening local democracy," said Ferley Bonifasius Kaparang, Chairman of the Manado City Election Commission.
Initiatives like this enhance transparency, accountability, and participation in the political process, which are essential to maintaining the quality of elections and ensuring that elected representatives genuinely represent the public interest.
"We hope that the Voice of Democracy Channel on Zonautara.com can serve as a model for other platforms in supporting a stronger and more responsive democracy," added Ferley Kaparang.
By Ronny Buol