The Secretary of the Presidential Advisory Board of the Republic of Indonesia (Wantimpres RI), Jan Prince Permata, representing Wantimpres member Dr. H Soekarwo, SH, M.Hum, spoke at a public dialogue themed “Youth and Politics 2024 between Optimism and Apathy”. The event was organized by the Regional Leadership Board of the Indonesian National Student Movement (DPC GMNI) Pematang Siantar, at the Pematang Siantar City Multipurpose Building on Saturday (15/7/2023).
In his presentation titled “Youth, National Challenges, and the 2024 Elections”, Jan Prince Permata explained that democracy, including general elections, will be of good quality if they have strong legitimacy born from the people’s political participation. “In the context of today’s Indonesian democracy, the youth play a crucial and strategic role in determining the quality of elections,” Jan said.
Jan cited data from the General Election Commission (KPU) that 52% or 106.36 million voters in the 2024 elections are under 40 years of age. “This 52% falls into the youth category. Therefore, we can conclude that the quality of the 2024 elections cannot be separated from youth involvement,” said Jan.
Hence, Jan urged GMNI and other youth and student organizations to actively participate in realizing democratic, honest, fair, and high-quality elections. “History has shown that the youth and students have always played a vital and strategic role in the ups and downs of our national life. I believe the 2024 elections will be the same,” Jan commented.
Other speakers in the public dialogue, which was also the inauguration ceremony of the DPC GMNI Pematang Siantar for the 2023-2025 period, were Commissioner of the National Commission on Human Rights RI Saurlin P. Siagian, Law Lecturer from HKBP Nomensen University Hisar Siregar, Secretary-General of the Central Board of GMNI M.Ageng Dendy Setiawan, and NGO figure from North Sumatra, Samulya Surya Indra.
The Mayor of Pematang Siantar, Susanti Dewayani, was also present. In her remarks, she encouraged GMNI and youth and student organizations in Pematang Siantar to collaborate and contribute to the development and institutionalization of democracy for the welfare of the people.
The public dialogue was also attended by representatives of students and youth in Pematang Siantar, including from the Indonesian Christian Student Movement (GMKI), the Islamic Student Association (HMI), and the Catholic Student Association of the Republic of Indonesia (PMKRI).