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Democracy and Islam in Indonesia$
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Alfred Stepan and Mirjam Künkler

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231161916

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231161916.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

Unfinished Business

Unfinished Business

Law Reform, Governance, and the Courts in Post-Suharto Indonesia

(p.168) 9 Unfinished Business
Democracy and Islam in Indonesia

Tim Lindsey

Simon Butt

Columbia University Press

This concluding chapter assesses how far Indonesia's legal system has come from the “institutional shambles” of 1998 to the rule of law, focusing on the role of the Mahkamah Agung (Supreme Court). Regulating the substance of regional laws—i.e. “cleaning up the legal debris”—is the mandate of the Supreme Court. However, the massive process of decentralization since 2001 has created numerous parallel institutions and overlaps of mandates that the central state and legal system have yet to master and regulate. In the perda (regional regulations) review cases in particular, the Supreme Court has failed to adequately referee disputes over the competing jurisdictions of various tiers of government arising out of decentralization and has failed to clarify what the “law” is, thus creating confusion and uncertainty. If this trend continues, the Supreme Court could undermine its primary role as an arbiter of justice in a fledgling democracy.

Keywords:   legal system, Mahkamah Agung, Supreme Court, regional law, democracy, decentralization, perda, justice

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