By Robert Byrd
Apr 29, 2007, 06:27
Of course President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and the Indonesian Corruption Eradication Commission (Komisi Pemberantasan Korupsi) could never be taken seriously the moment SBY pardoned former dictator president Suharto of any corruption he committed; Given Suharto is one of the wealthiest men in the world but while the Indonesian president’s salary is so low, that clearly amounts to one very large pardon! Of course the smart money is on SBY having made a promise to Golkar to do that very same thing in order to be given the presidency in one of the world's most dubious elections. The very notion that SPY and his PR plaything the KPK could be given any credibility went right out of the window after the Indonesian Attorney General subsequently stated he was amazed at the pardon and that he was initiating a civil corruption investigation against Suharto!
But it gets worse for any hopes the Komisi Pemberantasan Korupsi might somehow start doing the job SBY says they are there to do; yeh right. It seems SBY / Golkar / the KPK-KKK have bitten off more then they can chew by upsetting too many politicians from the other parties. First came news that the inappropriately named Indonesian Justice Ministry are going to can the KPK’s delivery mechanism, the three-year-old Anticorruption Court because “they do not know what their jobs were”! Of course any such act by the Justice [sic] Ministry (memories of previous heads comparing themselves favorably to Hitler) would need to be ratified by, wait for it, the House of Representatives; oh dear! Well that seems a foregone conclusion then given how the KPK have been attacking the wrong corrupt people lately.
Case in point is one Yusril Ihza Mahendra, the State Secretary and leader of Indonesia’s Crescent Moon and Star Party. The KPK-KKK announced they were to investigate Mr. Mahendra for alleged mark-up at the procurements of the Automatic Identification Fingerprints System (AFIS) by, wait for it, the Justice and Human Rights Ministry while he was their chief. Hmmmm, we wonder just how much that had to do with Mr. Mahendra’s former department deciding to close the KPK’s Anticorruption Court! But it went way beyond inter-departmental retribution, oh yes, Mr. Mahendra then announced he was making his own corruption complaint with the KPK against none other than Corruption Eradication Commission chief Taufiequrrachman Ruki! Funny, yes, but only if you do not want to see Indonesia get rid of its human rights abusing and economically crippling corruption problem. It seems KPK’s big boss Taufiequrrachman Ruki is guilty of violating the same Presidential Decree (No. 80/2003) as Mr. Mahendra when Ruki approved the purchase phone tapping equipment for the KPK without going out to tender, hmmmmm.
Of course all of this got very nasty and highly embarrassing for the Indonesian Government, so in stepped the House of Representatives (remember them) who summoned both Mahendra and Ruki to a closed door meeting, hmmmmm. In typical badly conceived verging upon the ridiculous attempts at spin, house speaker Agung Laksono said “Disputes involving leaders of state institutions on corruption issues would only weaken efforts to fight corruptions”. Then of course SBY stepped in to “defuse” the situation by stating that “appointing suppliers is sometimes appropriate”; ah, right, so not everyone is subject to the rule of law!
Yudhoyono called a snap Cabinet meeting to discuss the spat between Mahendra and Ruki. Also present in the meeting were Vice President Jusuf Kalla, Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Widodo Adi Sucipto, National Police chief Gen. Sutanto, Attorney General Abdul Rahman Saleh, and Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati. He, he, he, he. Golkar VP Kalla came out of that meeting and announced “The KPK is not at fault, and neither is Yusril," "This is if we look at the cases procedurally, as they merely approved what the project managers had proposed. The price of goods is decided by the project managers.” He, he, he, he, what a load of rubbish! So the apparently corrupt State Secretary and head of the KPK get off any charges of wrong doing; how nice but where does that leave Indonesia and its spiraling corruption reported to be worst now then it has ever been before?
The final nail in the coffin regarding any last straw claim to legitimacy by the KPK came with news that rumors have now started from informed sources that members of the KPK including the commissioners, investigators and prosecutors are actually on a bonus scheme for graft money retrieved; think of it as a commission for every person they manage to convict using or perhaps rather abusing Indonesia’s notoriously unjust judiciary. It’s just a shame for them that the KPK apparently do not prosecute DP or Golkar party members, or if they did that SBY pardoned the perceived daddy of state corruption himself, Suharto. There can not be many if any Indonesians who would not sell their own mothers, even their whole families to get a slice of the billions of dollars the Suharto family are said to have extorted out of the state and foreign aid. The fact the Suharto’s enjoy not only total state immunity but also state collaboration came in the last few weeks with timely news that the previous Justice Ministry chief Yusril Ihza Mahendra (remember him) sanctioned the use of the ministry’s own bank account by Tommy Suharto to get US$10 million of his frozen funds out of French bank BNP Paribas’ branch in London. The transaction actually occurred during the present Justice Ministry chief Hamid Awaluddin’s tenure which more than shows a very special and most favorable relationship with both Golkar and his predecessor Mr. Mahendra of course!
The thing of this for foreigners besides the snide jokes they level at the Indonesian Government is that it is our money that these crooks in office are stealing and getting off with while preaching their pious little wobbles (amateur PR). Foreigners who lose their life savings to Bali’s bent police force. Billions of dollars of western tax payers money given to the endemically corrupt Indonesian hate machine, sanctioned by western governments keen not to look after their own citizens interests and the human rights of every day Indonesians, but of securing closed bid contracts to exploit Indonesia’s vast mineral wealth, etc. Tax and service charges paid by foreign tourists which end up in foreign bank accoiunts, not the Indonesian social services' coffers or hotel workers pay packets as it should. Foreign investors and businessmen who have to join the corrupt leagues to make money or become victims and losers.
Foreign powers government may not tackle Indonesia’s nasty government, but foreigners can. For heaven’s sake, if you are in Indonesia already, get out; show your pride, ethics and humanity. If you are thinking of investing in Indonesia, going to Bali / Indonesia on holiday or even buying an Indonesian product at home, don’t; your money is going to the wrong people. Do not kid yourself or rather others that the dollars you spend in Indonesia helps the every day people, it does not, it only helps the corrupt who make decent Balinese / Indonesians' lives an impoverished no hope hell. Let all foreigners put the financial pinch on the Javanese hate and corruption merchants to try and force change from within, before it gets too late; before the only solution left to the Indonesian people is a cultural revolution like what occurred in Iran.