Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Prita's Fight for Freedom


On 13 May, Prita Mulyasari (32), mother of a baby & infant, was arrested by the Banten Police on charges of Defamation against the Omni International Hospital in Tangerang, Banten.

Many people thought that the arrest was unnecessary because Prita only sent e-mails to her relatives, co-workers and friends complaining about the poor services she received from the hospital. The protests spread very rapidly and forced the Police to release her on 3 June. Afterward, the Tangerang District Court dismissed the criminal prosecution last July. But somehow, the District Attorney submitted a new prosecution against Prita.

Meanwhile, the hospital's Civil lawsuit was accepted by the Tangerang District Court ordering Prita to pay compensation amounting to 300 million Rupiah to the hospital. Later, the Banten High Court confirmed this verdict but lowered the compensation amount to 204 million Rupiah.

Further, Prita rejected the hospital's offer to cancel the lawsuit if Prita make a written apology to them. This is obvious because if she apologize it would surely mean that she has been wrong.
Instead, Prita decided to fight the verdict by filing an appeal with the Supreme Court.

The above courts' verdicts were protested by many people not only because they thought that they were unfair, but also because they were passed at a time when many injustice occurred, for example people who were allegedly involved in conspiracy against the leaders of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) still remain untouched by the law.

People in many parts of Indonesia are now making efforts to help Prita fight for her freedom. Many of them have been collecting large amount of coins. While members of the Regional Representative Council (DPD) have donated 50 million Rupiah to Prita.

For details on the above, please click here, here, here, here, here and here.

Considering the above, I hope that the honorable Supreme Judges at the Supreme Court would carefully use their thoughts, feelings, sights, sense in examining Prita's case, not merely based on legal aspects but other aspects as well. That way justice shall prevail.

8 comments:

Snake Eyes said...

It's hard to imagine things like this still happening in the world I nope justice pulls through in the end

H. Nizam said...

Snake Eyes,

It is very sad, I hope that things will improve rapidly.

colson said...

If everyone who complains in public about the way ( representatives of) institutions, would be prosecuted, soon 80% of the world's population would be behind prison bars. My premature conclusion would be: this case is too crazy for words. Back off prosecuter and leave mrs Prita M. alone.

The problem however is that we ( I mean I) don't know about the details of the accusations of slander. Neither do I know the present Indonesian laws on libel. Nor do I know whether the case is under civil law or criminal law.

If it is a civil law case I guess it is appropriate that Hospital goes to court to settle the conflict in as long as the institution thinks it has a case - even if the rest of the world thinks it hasn't. The judge, not public opinion should decide about it.

So: my heart tells me to be indignant and sympathize with Mrs Prita M. Yet my ratio warns me to avoid an uninformed/premature judgment.

H. Nizam said...

Colson,

Both Criminal prosecution, and Civil lawsuit has been processed for this case.
The criminal prosecution was based on the Electronic Information & Transaction(ITE) Law which carries a sentence of 5 year thus enabling Prita to be arrested during process. It is also based on Penal Code with lesser penalty, Prita cannot be arrested during process.
This prosecution was dismissed by the court. The district attorney filed new one which is still being tried.

While in the Civil Lawsuit the hospital won at the District Court and High Court, and Prita now appealed to the supreme court.

Re: whether Prita is guilty of not is totally up to the judges.
As human beings the judges would use their consideration not only base on laws & jurisprudence, but also their own conscience and other relevant basis.

Edwin's Personal Blog said...

Unbury Prita's lost weapon: UU 8/1999 Consumers Protection.

H. Nizam said...

Edwin,

Yes, the Consumers Protection Law provide protection for Prita.

Saung Web said...

It's good idea ..
Prita has given inspiration that bloggers have a very large force

H. Nizam said...

Saung Web,

Bloggers in Indonesia are now able to influence public opinion.