Corruption Eradication In Indonesia : A Slippery And Long Journey

Corruption Eradication In Indonesia : A Slippery And Long Journey

The efforts of Indonesian government to overcome and to eradicate  corruption practices will face a slippery and a long journey after the Constitutional Court (MK) had been made a provisional rulling which it was favored by the House. Vote held day after House demanded MK reject the plaintiffs request which came from the KPK’s worker’s union and anticorruption activists.

On September 6th, 2017, the Constitutional Court dashed the hopes of those attempting to halt the controversial House of Representatives inquiry. The bench had rejected the plaintiffs request for a provisional rulling to suspend the House inquiry into the KPK’s performance.

The rejection was made more than a month after the plaintiffs lodged the provisional rulling request on August 2nd, 2017 to suspend the inquiry team from carrying out activities until the court decided on a final rulling on the judicial review case.

In the decision made by vote on September 6th, 2017, the court split into two camps, with four justices such as I Dewa Gede Palguna, Suhartoyo, Manahan Sitompul and Maria Farida Indrati, agreeing to accept the arguments of the plaintiffs and four other justices, including Anwar Usman, Aswanto, Wahiddin Adams and Arief Hidayat, deciding to reject the request.

Three of the four justices who agreed to grant the request, Maria, Palguna and Suhartoyo were the same justices who dissented to another controversial MK decision that undermined the country’s war against corruption in January.

The “final vote” made by Arief Hidayat, as the chief justice, determined the result of the vote, which was carried out in the absence of justice Saldi, a justice deemed to be a progressive who at the time was on the haj.

The four and four formation of justices who agreed and rejected the request hindered the voting process. “The final vote from the chief justice determined the decision as cited in the 2003 MK law. Therefore, we rejected the request,” Anwar Usman said.

Under the law, the Court can reach a decision with a minimum of seven justices, and if a decision is not reached, the vote of the chief justice determines the final court.

The rejection also means the judicial review case could go for months or even years as the court has no deadline for deliberating rullings on such cases, while the House’s inquiry team is set to deliver their decision on the KPK’s fate by the end of this month.

A slippery and a long journey

However, “the split-decision” of the Constitutional Court over judicial review which requested by anticorruption communities in Indonesia to halt the House’s inquiry team on KPK had shown that the efforts and the intention of Indonesian government to overcome the threats of extra ordinary crimes likes corruption have been facing the slippery and a long journey.

Some rumors and perhaps people can be predjudice that the Constitutional Court decision was made as “a reveange resistance” against the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) because as we know together  that some of the Constitutional Court chief and justices like Akil Mochtar and Patrialis Akbar had been sent to penitentiery through sting operations which had been done by KPK.

Erwin Natosmal Oemar of the Indonesian Legal Roundtable (ILR) said the request for a provisional decision had been a reasonable call made by the plaintiffs to support the KPK, particulary in what he deemed to be an urgent situation.

Obviously, the people and the anticorruption communities in Indonesia have wanted that the Constitutional Court decision has been agreed with the request of the plaintiffs, but its couldn’t happen and politically the court decisions has made President Jokowi has a “cross-way position” to follow MK decision which its mean the existance of the House’s inquiry team is a legal or President Jokowi has stand on previous his will is the support and empowerment the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK).

Likely, the House’s inquiry team will be sent their decision or their recomendation to the President on September 28th, 2017. One of the recommendation is the suspension of KPK.

Previously, Chairman of the House inquiry team of Golkar Party lawmaker Agun Gunandjar Sudarsa had said that the suspension of KPK was one of several recommendations, which range from the KPK improving its internal procedure to the most severe proposal : the dissolution of the KPK.

We hope the intention of Jokowi’s administration to tackle and to overcome the massive, structuralized and accute corruption practices doesn’t faded-away because if we were failed to eradicate those extra ordinary crimes, it means our youth generation didn’t have a bright future day.

Finally, combating corruption practices in Indonesia is a slippery way and a long journey, because of that we must have strong endurance to face it. Hopefully. Lets support President Jokowi to protect KPK and to combat corruption practices. May God bless us.

*) Agung Wahyudin, Senior researcher and observer at LSISI Jakarta.

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