National Campaign Team (TKN) of Jokowi-Ma`ruf spokesman, Abdul Kadir Karding, said reports against cleric Muhammad Bahar or Habib Bahar bin Smith were not an act of criminalization of ulema or Islamic scholars. He considered the lawsuit to the police was not about President Jokowi, but pride of the state.
“This is about the existence and symbol of the state. The pride of the country, not Jokowi,” Karding told Tempo on Friday, November 30.
Karding further supported the police to take stern action against people who defamed the state’s symbol. A great nation, he opined, should not degrade state’s dignity because it was the citizen who able to maintain the national pride.
Following the issue, Karding pinned hope it could be taken as a good precedent to prevent similar cases.
Jokowi Mania and Cyber Indonesia reported Bahar to the Police Cyber Crime Directorate on Thursday, November 29, over defaming president Jokowi.
However, Karding continued, the Jokowi-Ma’ruf campaign team did not have any authority related to the issue. The coalition, he said, could neither intervene or push the police to take legal action. Therefore, he expected the police could work professionally, “because this is alarming, it must be [legally] processed.”