Regional Representatives Council (DPD) Speaker Oesman Sapta Odang has come under fire after calling the Constitutional Court “stupid” inÂ a controversial statement made liveÂ on television regarding theÂ court’s recent ruling on DPD senator candidacy.
The Constitutional Court, theÂ court of final and binding arbitrationÂ in determining the constitutional validity of the nation’s laws and which issues decisions on electoralÂ disputes, recently issued a ruling that bans political party membersÂ from running as a DPD candidate in the 2019 legislative election.
DuringÂ aÂ Kompas TV talk show that was broadcast liveÂ on July 26, Oesman, who is also the Hanura Party chairman, appeared to be irritated during a discussion onÂ the polemicÂ surrounding the ruling, and quipped that “the MK [Constitutional Court]Â is stupid”.Â
On Tuesday, July 31, the Constitutional Court sent a legal notice to OesmanÂ followingÂ a meeting the court’s nine justices held on Monday, during whichÂ they watched and reviewed a recording of the Kompas TVÂ talk show.
“The Constitutional Court has concluded that [Oesman’s] statement can be deemedÂ an action that insultsÂ the honor, authority and dignity of the [court] and itsÂ justices,” said Constitutional Court secretary-general Guntur M. Hamzah.
On Wednesday, Oesman still seemedÂ reluctant to apologize to the court, saying that the court should be the one to initiate a meeting to discuss the matter.
“I can [ask for] apology.Â There’s no problem with that,” Oesman said. “However, as the DPD speaker, I must uphold the interests of the people, particularly those who live in the regions.”