“Empty Box” Democracy: The Phenomenon of Democracy in Indonesia (Case Study of Makassar City, 2018)

Ahmad Sahide, Adi Suryadi, Ahdiana Yuni Lestari


Democracy is defined as the government of the people where people have the right to give a mandate for someone to lead them. One of the unsure or uncertain part of this system is an election, and it becomes the significant momentum of the people to select the ‘chosen one’ as a leader. In addition, democracy facilitates people to deliver their aspirations and also criticize the government they elect. Indonesia as a state majorly populated by muslims, has implemented direct democracy after the fall of the New Order Era (Soeharto) in 1998. Since then, Indonesians have a chance to choose the president, vice and local government leader precisely in every five years. In 2018, the direct local election of Mayor in Makassar City produced a new phenomenon. During this process, there was only one running candidate which thus faced an “empty box” that won the election by 53% votes, but Munafri Arifuddin-Andi Rahmatika Dewi were next by having 46%. Some scholars stated that this phenomenon was the disaster of democracy, however, the authors also indicated it as the real system when people refused the single couple canditates offered by the political party.


Democracy; Indonesia; Local-Election; “Empty Box”; Makassar City

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18415/ijmmu.v9i8.3948


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