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Accused, PPLN Sydney Remembers Just Follow the Rules

Accused, PPLN Sydney Remembers Just Follow the Rules
QUX.ME, Australia - Circulating news and videos that say Sydney's Overseas Election Committee (PPLN) has closed one of the polling stations even though there are still many voters who have not voted on Saturday (04/13/2019).

An online petition circulated asking for repeated elections in Sydney because PPLN deliberately closed polling stations. PPLN Sydney said that the decision made was the result of deliberations with various parties and hence the PPLN Sydney would submit its decision to the central Panwaslu.

A number of videos showed Indonesian citizens in Sydney who were at the Sydney Town Hall polling station protesting screaming.

To ABC Indonesia, PPLN Sydney confirmed that the closing of the entrance to the Sydney Town Hall building was held at 6 pm local time.

"Until 6pm, the queue was still there but we decided to close it on consideration of permits for the use of buildings that have been used up and safety factors," said Heranudin, Chair of Sydney PPLN, Monday afternoon (15/04)

The decision was also made after deliberations with the Election Supervisory Committee (Panwaslu), witnesses, and representatives from the National Police Headquarters who were in Sydney.

"We closed the building door, but continued the service for those who have entered and are in the building," he explained to Erwin Renaldi from ABC Indonesia.

According to KPU regulations, the closing of voting was set at 6pm and not a few voters who came to the Sydney Town Hall polling station were voters who were not registered or were unaware if they were included in the Special Voters List (DPK) category.

Deposits are only allowed to cast one hour before polling stations are closed or start at 5pm according to the rules.

Elections in Melbourne Long Queue at the Indonesian Consulate in Melbourne.

But Heranudin said that until the deadline the line was still long and included everything and until 6 o'clock the queue was still there.

"We estimate that there will be around 400 people in the queue who cannot enter the building," he said, who denied the number was thousands.

PPLN Sydney admitted that it had actually given almost a year to ensure that Indonesian citizens fulfilled the conditions included in the voter list.

"So this is not cheating, but the voters are not proactive because since May 2018 we have asked that they register and make data matches," he said.

"Basically PPLN Sydney only runs everything according to the rules."

The petition asking for the election was repeated

An online petition circulates on social networks asking for a "re-election of the presidential election in Sydney Australia".

It is known that this petition was made by the Indonesian community group in Sydney "The Rock" which was submitted to President Joko Widodo, the General Election Commission, and the Election Supervisory Agency.

"Hundreds of people [who] have been queuing for about 2 hours cannot do their rights and obligations to vote because PPLN deliberately closed polling stations at exactly 6 pm regardless of the hundreds of voters lining up outside," the petition wrote.

"For this reason, the Indonesian community demands a re-election of 2019 in Sydney Australia."

Heranudin claimed to have learned of this petition and he said PPLN Sydney would submit its full decision to the Central Panwaslu.

"But if indeed there must be a re-election, it will take a short time for logistics preparation."

Until this news was revealed, the petition was signed by more than 21 thousand people with a target of 25 thousand people.

ABC Indonesia cannot verify whether only those who live in Sydney and Australia participated in "signing" the online petition.

About 65,000 Indonesians in Australia are registered as permanent voters for the 2019 Election with the highest number of voters, namely more than 25,000 in the constituencies of New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia.

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