– Jakarta.  The General Election Commission (KPU)  has addressed the case of alleged pre-marked ballots in Taiwan, an official announced on Monday (5/2/2024).

“We have addressed it, and fortunately, it went smoothly. We were able to anticipate it,” KPU Chairman Hasyim Asy’ari said during a Joint Press Conference for Overseas Election Organization at the  Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

He explained that the issue originated from the decision of the Overseas Election Committee (PPLN) Taipei, which sent ballots in advance to Indonesian citizens in Taipei using postal voting methods, reported

Out of 230,307 listed Indonesian voters in Taiwan, 175,145 chose to vote via postal methods.

Of the 175,145 postal ballots, 31,276 were sent earlier before 25 December 2023, by PPLN Taipei to anticipate the Chinese New Year holiday.

Due to the Chinese New Year celebration in Taiwan, postal services in the region were closed from 7 February 2024 onwards. The concern was that if the ballots were sent according to the scheduled 2-11 January 2024, the return of marked ballots by voters might be delayed, as the counting of postal votes was scheduled for 15-22 February 2024.

Hasyim emphasized that both PPLN and the Election Supervisory Board (Panwaslu) were aware of the early ballot delivery and, despite acknowledging the procedural breach, they took this action to protect the citizens’ right to vote via postal methods.

To address the violation, the KPU declared that the 31,276 early-sent ballots were considered damaged and, as a result, will not be counted. The KPU have replaced the damaged ballots by sending new ones from Jakarta to Taipei.

Indonesian citizens abroad cast two ballots—one for the presidential and vice-presidential elections and another for the members of the House of Representatives.

(ar/inp/pr/nm) | Indonesian National Police