Hargo.co.id, GORONTALO – Legislative candidates (Caleg) are prohibited from campaigning in places of worship. This prohibition was emphasized by the Mayor of Gorontalo, Marten Taha, when providing guidance to mosque imams throughout the city on Monday (11/12/2023).
“Feel free to campaign, but not in places of worship. Places of worship are among the locations prohibited for campaigning,” Marten emphasized.
According to him, the prohibition of using places of worship for campaigning is in accordance with the provisions stated in the general election (Pemilu) law Article 280 paragraph 1 letter H.
“In this context, it is important to respect the sensitivity and values of culture, religion, and freedom of religion in the context of election campaigns.
Although political campaigns are an essential part of the democratic process, boundaries must be set to avoid damaging the harmony and values held by the community,” Marten explained.
Marten pointed out that places of worship hold high spiritual meaning and value for every religious community. Using places of worship as campaign venues has the potential to provoke emotions and controversies, as well as damage religious values.
Furthermore, Marten stated that if placed in a situation where the community is easily provoked and quick to react to issues related to identity politics, ethnicity, and religion, without referring to and evaluating objective facts, it could deepen political polarization amid the various narratives and opinions on the same facts, leading to the weakening of social cohesion.
“In this regard, the restriction on the use of places of worship for campaigning does not imply a separation between religion and the state institution. Rather, it is more about distinguishing the functions between religious institutions and society.
Especially for issues with very high practical political value,” Marten concluded. (*)
Author: Rendi Wardani Fathan