An Introduction to Indonesian Law

Introduction to Indonesian Law

Introduction to Indonesian Law is a very useful primer for anyone who is planning to study abroad in Indonesia. The Constituency System of Indonesian law is followed by most laws both unwritten and legislated law. Whatever the type of legislation, it has to be followed; else, the society becomes polarized. In this text, legal law doesn’t mean only written law.

The Constitution of Indonesia is the supreme law that exists in the country. Any law contravening the Constitution is deemed to be null and void. The Constitution binds the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the government. In Indonesia, there are separate governments for matters concerning Muslim, Christian, and Chinese communities. Each has a constitution of its own with powers exercised by representatives of these communities.

There is general confusion among the people about what is the function of government, for what is constitution. To avoid this confusion, the constitution was formulated. It consists of sixty-eight articles and can be found in the original Indonesian language or translated into English. However, most people who are not deeply versed with the Indonesia language prefer to use the English version because the Indonesian ones are very hard to understand.

According to the constitution, there is separation of powers between the government and the church. The executive power is vested in a president, who is selected by the House of Representatives and the Senate. He has the power to grant letters of appointment, control the ministries, and dissolve the Houses of Congress. Legislation can be passed through a lower house as a bill but has to be passed through the upper house as a law.

Unlike other countries, there is no special top law official. There are, however, a few officials who have the supreme authority. They are the attorney general, secretary of defense, accountant, attorney general, and justice minister. The constitution also lays down the procedure by which bills are passed through both houses of the legislature. The attorney general will take care of the formulation of the legal documents necessary to pass the law.

The formulation of the law is done by two commissions. The board of directors of the Su Jakarta regency, which are responsible for the formulation of all laws that affect the private life of the people, and the Dewi Singkah Indonesia (DKI) board, which are responsible for the formulation of the penal code. Both of them meet at the Office of the Attorney General. There are some areas of law in which the board of directors cannot act. These are specified in the constitution.

As regards the constitution, there are numerous additions and deletions. According to the latest census, there are presently over half a million people who are not residents of Java and who are of Chinese origin. There are two groups – those who are of Chinese origin and those who are of Indonesian origin. The law on ethnicity is also being drafted. The problem of citizenship is also unsolved.

The constitution, however, is recognized as having been implemented effectively. There are no significant changes that have not been authorized by the voters through a plebiscite. The plebiscite, in turn, was approved by a majority of citizens in a referendum. This plebiscite, together with the election, is considered the basis for the introduction of law in Indonesia.

The criminal justice system in Indonesia is considered to be fair. The implementation of the law is very orderly and transparent. There are also provisions providing for the right of fair trial guaranteed by the constitution. There are, however, a few shortcomings in the criminal justice system, including lack of adequate evidence and testimony, inadequate investigation of crimes, and the shortening of time for trials.

The criminal justice system in Indonesia has been criticized for being insufficient in relation to human rights. The media has also alleged widespread discrimination against ethnic Chinese and Muslims. There have been cases of torture and summary execution of suspected criminals. A 2021 report from the United Nations Human Rights Commission also highlighted the problems in the handling of human rights cases, but expressed hope for progress in the future.

Another area that is problematic in relation to the law system is the labor environment. The National Labor Relations Act of 2021 makes it possible for workers to form unions and engage in other concerted activities not prohibited by the law. However, the Act also provides for the dismissal of employees who engage in activities deemed to be detrimental to the interests of employers. The government has made a limited effort to implement labor laws, despite its recognition of the right of collective bargaining, and despite calls from the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Labor Practices of Indonesia concerning the rights of workers.

How Is Sociology of Law Related to Criminal Justice?

The sociology of law can be described as an interdisciplinary approach or sub-field of legal studies concerned with the study of legal issues, practices and people. Sometime referred to as the descriptive law, this approach attempts to illuminate the aspects of the legal subject by means of a sociological perspective. As opposed to a legal philosophy with an exclusively legal approach, sociology of law can be seen as a descriptive approach, drawing upon the aspects of the legal domain as a means of understanding the practice of the law. It also draws on aspects of the social sciences as well as of history and other disciplines. Some view sociology of law as being a separate discipline from sociology of law, but many others believe that it is closely connected to all disciplines of the law.

In order for sociology to be called a subfield of legal scholarship, it must fall within the purview of criminology, philosophy of law, social science, psychology and other social science disciplines. However, one must also keep in mind that there is overlap among these various disciplines. For example, while some scholars within philosophy of law argue that legal systems tend to suppress societal aspects of the individual and/or the group, others are of the opinion that the absence of such societal aspects in legal systems is the result of their being unable to find a way to capture these aspects. This view is strongly influenced by developments in the early modern period when legal systems struggled with the problem of legitimacy. Legal scholarship in this era was based on theories of rectification and modernization. Continue reading