Section 1:

Context and Political Developments:


Post our WLP’s capacity building institute (the first part) followed with the support from the Asia Foundation and Puskapol UI and Women’s Coalition, we continued to work with legislative candidates and some incumbents in several activities include, assistance and monitoring, media campaign, and TOT for election monitoring from December 2013 through March 2014. We have been working with more or less the same group of women since August 2014. We aim to push the realization of the 30% quota for women in the parliament. Similarly, the expectation of women candidates have amounted high as they have better equipped, mainly because of our training and continued close communication. Our training and communication are an important impetus for women candidates to achieve greater will power to be in the race and to win. Many WYDII trained women who initially accepted that they would be merely complimentary to their parties, have risen to full membership in their parties.

 

Activities:


These activities were fully funded by The Asia Foundation and The Puskapol UI, and Google. But some of the participants who attended the activities were from the previous workshop, which was held with the support of WLP.

 

1. Assistance and Monitoring

To continue supporting the campaign of women candidates, WYDII has maintained close communication with participants through social media and short text messages (SMS) for once or twice a week during the campaign period. Through this communication we have monitored their progress in running their campaign and studied their chances to win the race. We also drafted survey questions of electability for them to run, to enable them to see areas where their chances to win are greater. We also have involved in discussion with their campaign team, which often included the candidates’ husbands. We have advised them on what issues to emphasize to certain type of constituencies, or what venues/occasions the candidates can get into.

The biggest hurdle during our monitoring and assistance was to convince the candidates to take our advice fully, especially closer to the Election Day. As most candidates were not so familiar with the political work and atmosphere, as result, they got easily distracted with unfounded strategies proposed by many. Also when the candidates were getting more visible or predicted to have a better chance to win or could gain significant votes, they were often surrounded/protected by new people which the candidates themselves unable to control to. When it’s closer to the elections day, these women also do not response well to our feedback much less than before. Increasingly, there was a belief that women could be placed as “vote getter” for the political parties. Many women candidates have contributed significant votes to the political parties and the political parties were the winning parties of this elections for involving women in their list, as for the women themselves, many got almost nothing.

 

2. Media Campaign

We collaborated with 7 radio stations across East Java Province to host talk shows with women legislative candidates. The challenges were candidates have different qualifications and that influence their ability to articulate their thoughts, and getting respect from the audience therefore, WYDII team members have had to work closely with them, to enable them understand the basic rules and basic knowledge about talking on the radio and how to response to various questions from the audience. Most candidates never talk on radio before this was their first expose to mainstream media. We have assisted and monitored closely the whole process to ensure that this wouldn't be difficult or painful experience for the candidates. As result, this program contributed to elevate candidates’ confidence and expose them to a greater sphere of campaign.

 

3. Training for Election Monitoring

One of the major requirements for women legislative candidates is have enough people to monitor the elections and to secure their votes from any potential fraudulence. WYDII has collaborated with the Women’s Coalition to hold a TOT training for elections monitoring. Women candidates have sent one of their team members to our TOT which later to pass it along /to train their own members. Primary material from this TOT was understanding the basic administrative regulation of elections, the role of the monitoring committee, mechanism to send complain, and the mechanism to collaborate with other women candidates across party line and collaborating with other women groups or other NGOs, media, and organization who support women’s political representation.

 

Section 2:

Outcome


•  As the background of women’s involvement in election almost unplanned, many still don’t understand the very basic knowledge of the quota system. Many women participants/legislative candidates have gained their critical understanding on quota system after attending our training.

•  Many participants have gained more confidence to run for campaign and more prepared with their political battle.

•  Many participants are keeping social media communications to discuss various strategies and experience in the field.

•  Most legislative candidates who sent their team members to attend our TOT on election monitoring have held TOT within their own team members.

 

Impact

•  As the Law on 30% quota system for women was taking into force, most political parties went frantic and found almost any women who would be willing to be included in their list of candidates and meet the administrative requirements. Otherwise, the Election Committee would remove them from the contest. As result, initially numbers of women legislative candidates were hesitate to put any effort in the campaign. But after they have attended our intensive 3 days training about political representation, including strategies to run effective campaign and how to win it, many candidates have decided to fully run and putting a significant amount of money and other resources to run a competitive campaign.

 

•  As the time goes, especially for women who are already active in the community and have a significant financial means along with a strong record of involvement in the community activities, have become a treat to their male peers and they were no longer perceived lightly.

 

•  Through social media, the collaboration and shared learning among women candidates across party lines have became stronger.

 

•  Since the media (radio stations) have known better the qualification of women candidates, the media also have starting to put more interest and to accommodate them into their program.

 

•  Twelve women candidates that we have been working with have won the race and soon will be sworn in to be the district legislative members.

 

Supporting documents:

1.  Photo of activities: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/auwd8i1xwddhvvo/D8GozZwm-5

2.  Survey Questions: https://www.dropbox.com/s/3omr22p6if3go92/Kuisener%20Elektabilitas%20Caleg%20Perempuan.docx

3.  Youtube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zloQS_meMFM