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