An Examination Of The Presidential System Of Indonesia Politics Essay

Every country has a system of their government because system of government is the fundamental things to rule a country. The system of government is a structure of government which controls the stability of the government. Generally it means the system of government is to maintain the stability of society to maintain the foundations of government, such as; political power, defense, economic, security to become a continuous system of governance and democracy where people can take part should contribute to the development of governance systems (Sistem Pemerintahan, 2010). In system of government, at least two kinds of system that this article like to discuss: Presidential system and Parliamentary system.

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Presidential system is a republic system of government where executive power is selected through separate elections and legislative power (Presidential System, 2011). In presidential system, the president is not only a figurehead of a country but also the head of government, and these are the country who adopted a presidential system; Indonesia, South Korea, Nigeria, Costa Rica, and many more (Republic with a Presidential System of Government, 2011). A parliamentary system is a system of government in which the parliament members is the most important role to the government, and the president is only the figurehead of government, thus the executive and legislative branches are related (Parliamentary System, 2011). In Parliamentary system, the head of government is both chief executive and chief legislator; the examples of the country which the head of government is both executive and chief legislator are United Kingdom, Thailand, South Africa, Poland, and many more (Countries with a Parliamentary System of Government, 2011).

The difference between a parliamentary government and a presidential system of government is the principle of separation of powers; in a parliamentary system, the prime minster is the head of government and controls the government, while the president is only just a figurehead or a king and is selected by the chief legislator. However, in a presidential system the president is selected by public in election and the president appointed the cabinet or the executive (the president and the cabinet) are separate from chief legislator (The Difference, 2011).

As we all know Indonesia adopted a presidential system of government. It is regulated in the opening of 1945 Constitution (paragraph IV) and under Article 1, Paragraph 1 of the 1945 Constitution; that mentioned “the State of Indonesia is a unitary state is a republic”. On this basis it can be concluded that Indonesia is a unitary state form, while the form of government is republican. A part form the unitary state and republican form of government, the President of the Republic of Indonesia came to power as head of state and also head of government. Based on 1945 Constitution, Article 4, Paragraph 1, that state “the President of the Republic of Indonesia shall hold the power of government by the Constitution”. Thus, the system of governance in Indonesia adopted a presidential system of government. Actually in 1949-1959 Indonesia adopted the parliamentary system or also known as transition era (Simanjuntak, 2003). In this era, counted seven times there were the fallen of the cabinet (in 4 years, there were 33 times of cabinet changing). So in 1959, President Soekarno changed the system back into presidential system.

The presidential system already suitable with Indonesian system because the presidential system has more effectiveness: the legislative is separated from executive. The period of authority of the president and vice president which are constant (in Indonesia, 5 years), the election directly by the citizens and in order to keep the stabilization of the government system, the one who has once been a president in previous period, can run himself for the election one more time. Just one more, because based on the Constitution of Indonesia, a person can only be a president twice in a row. For example, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has been chosen for the second time, so that means he can’t candidate himself in the next election anymore. But not only adopted Presidential system, Indonesia also combines the system with the multi-party system. Multi-party system is a system in which many major and minor political parties have the power to gain control of government through the coalition (Multi-party System, 2011). The effective number of political parties that participate in a multi-party system is lower than ten political parties. But in Indonesia the numbers of parties that compete to gain control of government are more than thirty political parties. This becomes a serious problem for Indonesia to move forward because if many political parties want to gain control, of course the political parties will try to intervene the President works (Hanta, 2010).

This article suggests that the presidential system is suitable for Indonesia, but it has not worked well enough, because Indonesia also adopted the multi-party system, this article suggest that the multi-party system is not fit to presidential system, and it is considered as the main problem that inhibits the workings of the presidential government (Rully, 2010), for example; in forming and reshuffling the Cabinet, the political parties, especially the parties in the House of Representatives, can cut the prerogative right of the President to shape a reshuffle and the political parties can withdrawing support or coalition with the President. As a result, in the process of forming and reshuffling the Cabinet, the President will face the difficulty to make a decision.

To overcome this problem this article offers a solution, if the multi-party system still considered as barrier to make Indonesia a better country, Indonesia should make a laws or a regulation regarding the numbers of political parties who will participate in the election, approximately five political parties.