Ban on graffiti art questioned

  • Karpal and I never quarrelled even though we belonged to different parties, says Ling
    Karpal and I never quarrelled even though we belonged to different parties, says Ling

    Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh and former transport minister Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik never quarrelled or fought, despite being in different parties with competing ideas about politics. This was because the former MCA chairman and the late DAP stalwart had forged a friendship at university, which Dr Ling said stood the tests that politics threw at... …

  • Law students hold candlelight vigil for Karpal
    Law students hold candlelight vigil for Karpal

    A group of first-year law students held a candlelight vigil at the Esplanade in George Town, Penang, tonight for their idol, the late Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh. The students had planned an impromptu vigil for Karpal, who they credited with inspiring them to take up law as a career choice. “We planned the event on Facebook and word got... …

  • Michael Cornelius — Karpal’s loyal ‘other half’
    Michael Cornelius — Karpal’s loyal ‘other half’

    GEORGE TOWN, April 18 — Karpal Singh’s loyal aide Michael Cornelius Selvam Vellu, who also died in the accident that killed Karpal yesterday, was almost like Karpal’s “other half”. The trained... …

  • Umno lawyer calls Karpal ‘one of the most ethical criminal lawyers’
    Umno lawyer calls Karpal ‘one of the most ethical criminal lawyers’

    Umno lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah had plenty of encounters in the courts with the late Karpal Singh but today, he paid tribute to the veteran lawyer who died in an accident yesterday. Shafee said Karpal was “one of the most ethical criminal lawyers” he used to appear with while acting as deputy public prosecutor or counsel for the... …

  • Gerakan calls Karpal elder statesman, Samy Vellu cries over news of death
    Gerakan calls Karpal elder statesman, Samy Vellu cries over news of death

    In an ultimate accolade, Gerakan, DAP’s political rival in Penang, today praised Karpal Singh as an elder statesman and a true Malaysian. State Gerakan deputy president Datuk Dr Cheah Soon Hai said Karpal was one of the few people in the country who had left a legacy. He said the former DAP chairman was a legend in both the political and... …

  • Abdullah pays tribute to Karpal’s life of service – Bernama
    Abdullah pays tribute to Karpal’s life of service – Bernama

    Former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said Karpal Singh, who died in a road accident yesterday, led a life of tireless commitment and service to the people.  “We are poorer for the loss of a great legal mind and a crusader for justice and human rights," he said as he extended condolences to the family of the former DAP chairman and... …

Jakarta (The Jakarta Post/ANN) - The latest regulation on public space from the populist Governor Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has raised some eyebrows, especially those of mural and graffiti artists.

In a gubernatorial decree issued on April 18, the government will punish individuals or firms that write, draw, paste pamphlets or posters on walls in public places to with a maximum of 60 days in prison and a 20 million rupiah (US$2,054) fine.

The decree is the operating regulation of Article 21 of Bylaw No. 8/2007 on public order.

Panji Purnama Putra, the coordinator of mural and graffiti community Garis Keras feat Spik Lala, said the walls belonged to the public, therefore they had the right to use them.

"Why should there be a decree on that? We don't write or draw on the walls for nothing. We have messages we need to deliver," he told The Jakarta Post on Thursday.

University of Indonesia sociologist Johannes Frederik Warouw said the governor should have first studied the phenomenon of writing and drawing on walls in public spaces before issuing such a decree.

Johannes said most graffiti was a form of expression of young people.

"Besides marking their territory, these youths also express their political views and social criticism [through the graffiti]," he said.

Johannes said he suggested the city administration tend to the talents of these young people by holding mural or graffiti competitions, instead of punishing them.

"It's like parents whose children love to write on the walls at home. Instead of punishing the kids, why don't they just give them papers to write and draw?" he said.

"I agree people should be punished if they glue commercial posters on walls, as they are misusing public spaces for commercial purposes," he said.

Johannes said judging from the decree, he considered that Jokowi, who loves heavy metal music, had started to shift his leadership style from serving the citizens to authoritarianism.

While the city administration is sending a strong message against street art, many institutions see the potential of the artists and cooperate with them to beautify the city with social messages.

Jokowi also previously ordered the Jakarta Public Works Agency, toll road operators and road construction companies to paint all the walls in order to make the city look cleaner and more beautiful.

Panji said his community had cooperated with a number of governmental institutions like the Jakarta Police and the National Population and Family Planning Agency (BKKBN) to make murals about save driving and the importance of family planning.

"I question the governor's intention to severely punish us while other institutions could cooperate with us," he said.

According to Panji, the jail and fine punishment is over the top and he suggested the administration create a forum for both parties to find a better solution other than issuing the decree.

Public Order Agency head Kukuh Hadi Santoso said the city administration would willingly cooperate with artists who asked for the agency's permission to use the walls.

"But not all artists have that courtesy," he said, adding that the agency's 6,120 officers were not sufficient for patrolling the city around the clock.

Kukuh said his men were only tasked to catch those in act and hand them to the police. "We only enforce the bylaw," he said, adding that so far no one had been caught graffiting.

Follow @YahooMalaysia on LINE for daily news updates.

Comments on Yahoo pages are subject to our link to Comments Guidelines. You are responsible for any content that you post. Yahoo is not responsible or liable in any way for comments posted by its users. Yahoo does not in any way endorse or support comments made by its users.

  • Told to ‘shut up’ on Twitter, Zul Noordin lashes back at Khairy The Malay Mail Online
    Told to ‘shut up’ on Twitter, Zul Noordin lashes back at Khairy

    KUALA LUMPUR, April 18 — A feud is breaking out between former Perkasa vice president Datuk Zulkifli Noordin and Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin on Twitter. Told unequivocally by the minister... …

  • Langkawi BN MP pokes fun at Karpal Singh’s remains The Malaysian Insider
    Langkawi BN MP pokes fun at Karpal Singh’s remains

    As the nation mourns the passing of a great politician, BN MP Datuk Nawawi Ahmad insulted the late Karpal Singh by posting a picture of the veteran politician's blood-smeared face as he lay in his Toyota Alphard following a tragic accident this morning. Along with the Facebook picture was a newspaper cutting on Karpal being opposed to the... …

  • Karpal’s car crashed into lorry, not the other way around, says Perak police The Malaysian Insider
    Karpal’s car crashed into lorry, not the other way around, says Perak police

    Initial investigations have revealed that Karpal Singh’s Toyota Alphard crashed into a five-ton lorry in the accident yesterday that claimed his life and that of his assistant, Perak police said today. State police chief Datuk Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani also dismissed rumours and speculation that the accident was caused by the lorry crashing... …