If netizens hadn’t helped shined a light on the tragic rape and murder of 14-year-old girl named Yuyun, her senseless death would remain unknown for most people in Indonesia. Yuyun was raped and killed by 14 boys and young men in Bengkulu – her body, stripped and tied, was found in a 5-m deep trench, according to police report. The news was covered by provincial media Harian Rakyat Bengkulu and Bengkulu Ekspress earlier in April, but it barely got any attention in the national media, until several Indonesian feminists started to notice and amplified the case weeks later.
Upon finding out about the case, activist and musician, Kartika Jahja, started a social media campaign with the hashtag #NyalaUntukYuyun (light for Yuyun) on. She shared a short video of herself flicking a lighter then said “Saya bersama Yuyun” (I’m with Yuyun) to draw attention on the tragic incident. She encourages others to pass on the light because she believes that “our solidarity is a light in the dark for sexual violence victims”.
In one of her tweets, Tika expressed her concern that most people have become too jaded about news sexual violence in Indonesia that they no longer care. As Twitter users began to react to the campaign, however, major national media finally paid attention and picked up the story.
Tika tweeted (2/5), “Yuyun’s rape and murder case is slowly getting the exposure it deserves. I really hope this is the 1st step to her getting justice. #NyalaUntukYuyun.” She believes that public attention on the case will put a pressure on the enforcement to handle the case more seriously. So far, police have arrested 12 of 14 the perpetrators, while two others are still at large.
What happened to Yuyun is a wake-up call for us. Don’t wait until it happens to you, your family, your friends. We must stand together to demand justice to the victims and to actively combat sexual violence. We can start by lighting up the fire of solidarity and preserve the flame for justice through #NyalaUntukYuyun.
This collaborative campaign addresses cyberbullying against women.