Friday, February 12, 2010

I am a Second Class Citizen

Back in 2005 I wrote about how the Supreme Court was hatching a plan to make foreign men deposit a huge amount of money before marrying Indonesian women. It is said based on The Egyptian model. Of course, the Egyption model will set you back only one tenth of the Indonesian proposed amount.

Fast forward to 2010, that plan is now becoming part of the Draft of Marriage Law. Article 142 paragraph 3 stated, The future husband who has foreign nationality must pay a guarantee fund to The future wife through an Islamic bank for the amount of 500 million rupiah.

It's just wrong in so many levels.

It sounds like the old Turkmenistan rule except theirs is applicable to both men and women, unlike ours which is discriminating against women.

The way I look at it, if Indonesian Government genuinely wants to protect our women, they can start with protecting our TKI (foreign domestic workers). Everyday we read stories about some abuse they endure from their foreign bosses, bad treatment from our own people upon their return, also from people from their agencies. There are more women going abroad to work than those who got married to foreigners.

I dont get the reasoning of putting $50,000 as a deposit. It can only create more barrier for these couple to get married. Not every foreigner could afford that steep price. The couple could, of course, just live together which give even less protection for these women than a marriage. Plus, for those trying to by-pass this ruling, it can create an opportunity for more corruption.

Does this applicable to non moslem Indonesian? Because to my knowledge this law is only applicable for moslem Indonesian. If I was right, then it is not in accordance to what the prophet taught. I always heard that he urged for making it easier for people to get married because it is an honorable act.

What if the couple stays married forever, how or when could she get access to the deposit? How about the compounded interest of it? What if after all these time, the wife died first, could her husband get his deposit back, because I am not sure you can give your asset to a foreigner in this country?

Why dont the government make prenuptial agreement compulsory for those marrying foreigners. It can hold at courts all over the world, giving more protection in the future for both parties, probably even better than a deposit can do in the long run.

I would feel like my government is pimping me if they made my future husband pay for their permission to marry me. I would feel so very dirty.

Thank you Indonesia, for once again, making me feel like a second class citizen in my own country.


colson said...

One more reason for women - a majority after all- to take political control in the country.

It is strange that the very state (any state) which reason to exist is to protect it's citizens, often acts like it owns them.

By the way: my two sons - and their wives I assume- seem to have been lucky to have married just in time).

triesti said...

I really dont get how come women in the Parliament agreed to draft this law. I hope they are not stupid enough to pass it as a Law.

Yupe, lucky them.

delvi said...

huh! it shows that our gomen and those in parliament lack of gender equality education. they say they want to protect us woman from foreign future husband, but in fact they are pimping us to the highest bidder. screw them!

and i second u triesti on "what were those lady MP thinking when they decided to agree with this law?"

mukuge said...

whew... that just made the outlook of said lovely BF (intrepidly non-Indon; quite normal anyway if one lives overseas) of proposing WAY MUCH MUCH MUCH smaller.

I guess, in a way my own country's government is telling me it prefers me to marry a foreigner only by way of some financial contract, or failing that, do a "kumpul kebo". How unfacilitative indeed.

mousharilla said...

I heard about this a while back.. I didn't realize people took it seriously though.. I really wish they'd think things through before making these idiotic laws.. *sigh*