JAKARTA - A judicial ethics panel in Indonesia has found the chief justice of the Constitutional Court guilty of ethical violations over a ruling that paved the way for the son of President Joko Widodo to run for the vice presidency.
The panel ordered Anwar Usman, who is the president's brother-in-law, to quit as the court's top judge. He can continue to serve as one of the court's nine judges but must recuse himself from any election-related cases in future if he has potential conflict of interest, the panel ruled.
The panel earlier reprimanded six other Constitutional Court judges for violating the ethics code in connection with the ruling.
The panel was formed to investigate the conduct of the nine judges amid a public outcry after they ruled that a minimum age requirement of 40 need not apply to all candidates in the 2024 polls.
That effectively gave Gibran Rakabuming Raka, 36, the green light to join the race as the running mate of Prabowo Subianto.
“The reported judges were found to have collectively violated the constitutional judges’ ethical behaviour code,” ethics panel chief Jimly Asshiddiqie said on Tuesday.
The panel said the other six judges had violated the principles of decency and appropriateness because they had handled a case that had a potential conflict of interest for the chief justice.
Jokowi, as the president is popularly known, has faced accusations from critics that he may have interfered in the decision. He has declined to comment on the court ruling and the allegations.
The inclusion of Gibran was initially seen by some political experts as a boon for the campaign of Prabowo, a third-time presidential contender, allowing him potentially to tap into the huge support base of Jokowi, who defeated him in the two previous polls.