Tuesday, 18 February 2020 | 20:15 WIB

Buni Yani Versus Ahok, Guntur Romli: Is it Because Ahok is a Minority?

Guntur Romli and Buni Yani

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - Buni Yani was found guilty in the case of Act on Electronic Information and Transaction (UU ITE) violation and was sentenced to 1.5 years in prison. However, the panel of judges decided Buni Yani not to be detained, on the grounds that during the trial Buni Yani was not arrested.

This decision triggered questions from various elements of society, one of them is the Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI) politician Mohamad Guntur Romli. Guntur considered the fact that Buni Yani is not imprisoned as strange.

Guntur then compared the situation with the blasphemy case of Former Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, where after the verdict the judge ordered Ahok to be arrested immediately despite him not being detained during the trial similar to Buni Yani.

"This verdict is unfair when compared to Ahok’s, who was sentenced to two years in prison and was directly detained. Ahok was also not arrested during the trial process, the same as Buni Yani," said Guntur in Jakarta, Wednesday (11/15/2017).

"Is it because Ahok who is often associated with minority groups, and therefore, he was subjected more heavily to the law? Is it because Buni Yani is a symbol of groups that have been intimidating and claiming to be the majority and that makes him less subjected to the law?," he continued.

Guntur, who was part of the success team of Ahok-Djarot in the 2017 Jakarta Provincial Election, deems this is a selective application of the law. "This is the phenomenon of a selective law enforcement, easy-to-bend law, straight and sharp to the weak but dull to the strong and hard," he said.

"The verdict was weird and unfair, it smells fishy," he added.

Furthermore, he expects  an appeal from the public prosecutor.

"I hope the prosecutor appeals and continues to follow up on Buni Yani’s case so that justice can be enforced and crime can receive punishment and sanction as fair as possible," he said.

As previously reported, in a court ruling held at the Library and Archives Office Building, Bandung, Tuesday (11/14/2017), the Panel of Judges of Bandung District Court found Buni Yani guilty in violation of UU ITE, and sentenced him to 1.5 years in prison.

Buni Yani was convicted of altering the video of Ahok's speech in Seribu Islands by removing the word 'wear'. He is also considered to have spread information that generated hatred against people based on tribe, religion, race, and intergroup (SARA), related to his posts on Facebook.