A very sad day today as I’ve heard how a part of democracy in my country has been shut down by the domination of big corporation with big money. I’m talking about the trial case of Prita Mulyasari vs Omni International Hospital which verdict Prita Mulyasari to be guilty of name blemishing of the Omni International Hospital.
This trial case was initially triggered by an email from Prita Mulyasari to one of her colleague complaining about the low quality that Omni International Hospital has given her. Instead of her being treated and getting better, she complained that her condition gotten worse as she also witness a false diagnose by an incompetent doctor.
That complain then goes worldwide in the internet and commented critical by the viewers. The Omni International Hospital then pressed charges to Prita Mulyasari as they claimed that their customers decreased as a direct result of Prita’s email content. Prita then was confined in a prison without any further investigation from the law enforcement while the claim from Omni International Hospital remained bias.
I have to tell you guys that Prita has to pay punitive damage in the sum of Rp 205 million or if you convert it in dollars is around $20,500. With the ITE (Information & Electronic Transaction) act which define a person can be fined or sent to jail for name blemishing, Prita was put into the guilty stance.
This is just one of those ludicrous regulations which threaten the very essence of democracy and the freedom of speech. This verdict sends the message of fear to express your opinion to the public. If the opinion is bad or disadvantageous for the person being targeted, then he can shut down the person by using this law. I say this is a law abuse which just want to get a chance to shut down information from the public knowing.
If this goes on, I’m afraid that our mass media will also be pressured and we will go back to the Monarchy of the New Order that was once led by Soeharto. Big corporate can just shut down any threatening comment against them using this law. Next, the government will select the information that we can obtained by censoring private mass media corporation.
I say, enough is enough! I’m sick of getting stomp by them and give our freedom of speech back. Your helping to Prita is essentially a voice of support in the freedom of speech. Let’s make this moment worth and may justice be served in this country! For the well-being of a democracy country which we once dream of……