Blasphemy case needs to be free from pressure: Expert

The legal process in the on-going blasphemy case should not be forcefully pushed either by the masses or by political interests, Syarif Hidayatullah Islamic University Constitutional Law Expert, Ismail Hasani, has said.

“Let the case take its due course. A state law system should be free from pressure or interventions from any parties,” he stated in Jakarta on Thursday.

Hasani noted that the case involving non-active incumbent Jakarta Governor, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (Ahok), is being subjected to pressures and perusal by the masses, which can influence the state of guilt of an individual.

These kinds of pressure, he continued, jeopardize the cause of law enforcement in Indonesia, especially in cases that intersect with the publics interest.

He believed that the legal process against Ahok was going ahead at an extraordinary speed and it needed a long and thorough discussion in order to determine whether any criminality is involved.

Hasani also held that the due process of law may have been neglected when Ahoks status was quickly changed from being a witness to a suspect.

“That is an oddity and I think it is moving too rapidly. Whether there are parties who are rushing this process, I believe the public can see it for themselves,” he added.

He believed that blasphemy was an abstract notion and it is not recognized in the human rights paradigm.

Ahok, who is participating in the 2017 Jakarta gubernatorial race, has been named a suspect following his allegedly blasphemous statements on the Quranic verse, Al Maidah: 51, during his recent visit to Thousand Islands District.

Source: Antara News