Money Politics in Cilacap Bupati Election

Suara Merdeka reports of “money politics” in the Cilacap bupati election campaign.  In total Rp. 214 juta ($21,000) in Rp. 10,000 (~$1) notes were discovered in a car belonging to a campaign member of Novita Wijayanti-Mochamod Muslich.  Novita, who is only 32 years old, is a member of the provincial representative council.  She is backed by PDIP and is the daughter of Fran Lukman (see here), who has been the Head of Cilacap local council for over 10 years.

Sebelumnya diberitakan, warga Dusun Medeng, Desa Bulaksari, Kecamatan Bantarsari menangkap anggota tim sukses pasangan Novita Wijayanti-Mochamad Muslich pada malam menjelang pemungutan suara, Sabtu (8/9).  Mereka ditangkap warga karena diduga hendak menyebar uang. Di dalam mobil Toyota Avanza R-9306-AH yang mereka kendarai terdapat uang pecahan Rp 10.000 dengan total Rp 214,98 juta. Juga ditemukan 340 lembar kertas bergambar Novita-Muslich, 13.710 lembar stiker bertuliskan angka satu, 2.000 lembar gambar Tatto Suwarto Pamuji bersama seorang perempuan, serta 9 bungkus lem dan 4 buah kuas. Warga melaporkan kejadian tersebut kepada Panwas.

Article here: Dipanggil Panwaslu, Penyebar Uang Mangkir.

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Head Judge Rotated to Lampung

Koran Sindo reported that the Head Judge at the Semarang State Court, Sutjahjo Padmo Wasono, will be rotated to Tanjung Karang High Court in Lampung.  Despite his alleged for his role in the bribery case implicating two judges on the Semarang Corruption Court–see here and here–this doesn’t seem like a demotion, instead he’s moving from a State Court to a High Court.

Ketua Pengadilan Negeri (PN) Semarang Sutjahjo Padmo Wasono dimutasi oleh Mahkamah Agung (MA) ke PT Tanjung Karang,Provinsi Lampung.

Sebelumnya, Tjahjo diduga terlibat dalam kasus dugaan suap dua hakim Pengadilan Tipikor; Kartini Juliana Magdalena Marpaung, dan Heru Kisbandono yang ditangkap petugas Komisi Pemberantasan Korupsi (KPK). Juru Bicara Pengadilan Negeri Semarang Togar membenarkan perihal mutasi pimpinan PN Semarang.Ketika ditemui di kantornya kemarin,Togar mengatakan baru mengetahui hal itu dari website resmi Mahkamah Agung. “Memang benar, tapi Surat Keputusan (SK) mutasi itu belum kami terima,” ujarnya.

Ad Hoc Judges Connection to Grobogan

Kompas.com reports that one of the judges caught accepting bribes–see here–had previously competed to win PDIP backing to run in the Bupati elections with M Yaeni.  It’s likely that, Heru Kusbandono, who was an ad hoc judge at the Corruption Court in Pontianiak was an intermediary between the suspect and the judges from the Corruption Court in Semarang.

Pada Tahun 2010, HK pernah mengikuti penjaringan calon wakil bupati Grobogan dari PDI Perjuangan. Ketua DPRD Grobogan M Yaeni juga mendaftarkan diri sebagai balon wabup. HM gagal dalam penjaringan itu. Ketika menjabat sebagai hakim ad hoc Pengadilan Tipikor Pontianak, tidak ada perkara korupsi yang menonjol yang diperiksa dan diputus oleh HK.

Separately, Tempo.co, citing data from KP2KKN, reported that Heru Kusbandono was previously a defence lawyer for corruption suspects:

ICW dan KP2KKN menyebutkan Heru pernah bertindak sebagai pembela dalam beberapa kasus korupsi, yaitu:

1. Pada 2009 menjadi pembela dalam perkara dugaan korupsi proyek pengadaan mesin tahun 2006. Dua terdakwa yang ia bela adalah Dosen Politeknik Negeri Semarang (Polines) Joko Triwardoyo dan alumnus Polines Deny Kriswanto dan diadili di Pengadilan Negeri Semarang pada 2009.

2. Pembela dalam perkara dugaan korupsi pengadaan kartu tanda penduduk (KTP) dan kartu keluarga (KK) di Grobogan tahun anggaran 2004 senilai Rp 1,7 miliar. Kasus tersebut diadili di Pengadilan Negeri Purwodadi. Terdakwa dalam perkara itu, meliputi tiga pejabat di lingkungan Pemkab Grobogan, yakni Soedjono, Syahiro, dan Wisnu. Selain itu Direktur PT Karya Inti Karindo Semarang, H Soehadi juga turut menjadi terdakwa.

3. Pembela dalam perkara dugaan korupsi dana kemahasiswaan IKIP Veteran sebesar Rp 1,2 miliar. Terdakwa dalam kasus tersebut adalah mantan rektor dan pembantu rektor II IKIP Veteran Semarang, JFM Suwandi dan Etty Hermiwati. Perkara diadili di Pengadilan Negeri Semarang dan mendapat vonis bebas.

Selain itu, Heru juga pernah menjadi kuasa hukum Partai Karya peduli Bangsa (PKPB), Partai Keadilan dan Persatuan Indonesia (PKPI) dan Partai Persatuan Daerah (PPD) dalam gugatan melawan KPU Kota Semarang di Mahkamah Konstitusi. Saat itu KPU Semarang dinilai tak profesional dan melanggar undang-undang yang menyebabkan proses tahapan Pemilihan Wali Kota Semarang cacat hukum.

Ia pun menjadi kuasa hukum pasangan calon bupati dan wakil bupati Grobogan, Agus Supriyanto-M Nurwibowo. Mereka menggugat Komisi Pemilihan Umum Daerah (KPUD) Grobogan ke Mahkamah Konstitusi atas perkara gugatan terhadap penetapan hasil pemilihan kepala daerah Grobogan 2006.

Tak hanya menjadi kuasa hukum, Heru juga pernah mengikuti penjaringan calon Wakil Bupati Grobogan dari Partai Demokrasi Indonesia Perjuangan pada 2010. Saat itu Ketua DPRD Grobogan M. Yaeni juga mengikuti penjaringan, namun langkah Heru Kandas.

Kompas.com article available here: Hakim HK Pernah Daftar Jadi Wabup Grobogan.

Tempo.co article available here: Sebelum Jadi Hakim Tipikor, Heru Kusbandono Pembela Kasus Korupsi.

As usual, h/t the excellent KP2KKN media archive here.

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Ad Hoc Judges from Semarang Corruption Court Caught Accepting Bribes

Kompas.com and Suara Merdeka reported that KPK caught two ad hoc judges from the Semarang Corruption Court receiving bribes. KPK declined to specify the bribe amounts but indicated it was greater than Rp. 100 million ($9,500).  Suara Merdeka indicated it was reportedly Kartini Marpaung and Heru Priyombodo.

Kompas article here: KPK Tangkap 2 Hakim Tipikor di Semarang.

Suara Merdeka article here: Hakim Ad Hoc Tipikor Semarang Tertangkap Tangan.

Update:

In another article Tempo.co noted the following:

  • The bribe amount was Rp. 150 million (about $14,500).
  • The briber was Sri Dartuti, the younger sibling (adik) of the DPRD Head in Grobangan district, M Yaeni.
  • The bribe was provided in relation to case before the court relating corruption of Rp. 1.9 billion ($200,000) in the purchase of ambulances.
  • Various PDIP politicians implicated in the case have already benefited from favourable treatment in relation to the case.

Update 2:

M Yaeni was sentenced to two and half years prison on 27 August 2012.  Ironically, the controversial Judge Lilik presided over the case.  See: Ketua DPRD Grobogan Divonis 2 Tahun 5 Bulan.

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Judicial Commission Statistics: 2005-2012

Tempo.co summarises the Judicial Commission’s performance statistics from August 2005 until June 2012:

  • 6,634 citizen complaints
  • 3,602 of which were complete and therefore registered
  • 1,415 of which were acted upon
  • 148 judges recommended for disciplinary action
  • 81 recommendations accepted by the Supreme Court
  • 67 recommendations rejected.

Article here: Komisi Yudisial Baru Periksa 570 Hakim Nakal.

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Corruption monitoring institutions in action, or not

This week’s Reformasi Weekly Review highlights, in relation to a new KPK investigation of corruption in the procurement of police driving simulators, the ineffectiveness of internal monitoring institutions at the Police:

Bambang [who couriered the kick-backs and a key witness in the investigation] also told Tempo that other payments flowed to other officers, including: Rp15 billion to the Traffic Police Primary Cooperative (Primkoppol), commanded by mid-ranking officer, Dep Maj Com (Ajun Komisaris Besar) Teddy Rusmawan; and Rp. 1.7 billion [~$170,000] to officials in the police Oversight Inspectorate (the unit designated with preventing corruption), including a Rp. 700 million [~$70,000] transfer to a team within the unit, and Rp. 1 billion [~$100,000] in cash to the commanding officer, a three-star general, Com Gen Fajar Prihantono. Sukotjo supported his claims by showing Tempo bank transfer statements and Blackberry Messenger conversations.

Unsurprisingly then…

For their part, police officials have asserted that an internal police investigation into the matter determined that no kickbacks occurred. A police spokesperson, Maj Com Agus Rianto, said that, “We did an investigation some time ago. The result was that there was no provision of money.”

The excellent Reformasi Weekly Review is available here: www.reformasi.info.

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Small Protest at Cilacap Prosecutor Office

A demonstration was held on 25 July 2012 in front of the State Prosecutor’s Office in Cilacap.  They demanded that the state prosecute the current DPRD Head, Fran Lukman, for forging a school certificate.  The case originates from 2002 and the prosecutor has held the case since as far back as 2005.  On 8 June 2012 Deputy Attorney-General Marwan Effendi instructed the district prosecutor to prosecute the case.  The central office was reportedly responding to complained filed by a group People’s Movement for a Clean Cilacap (Gerakan Masyarakat Cilacap Bersih).  The chief prosecutor, Edyward Kaban, addressed the demonstrators and explained the current status of the case:

Kajari Cilacap Edyward Kaban saat menemui demonstran menuturkan, pihaknya sudah menerima surat perintah Kejagung tersebut. Hanya pelimpahannya ke pengadilan tetap harus menunggu perintah dari atasan.

Berita acara pemeriksaan, ,[sic] menurutnya sudah dikirim ke Kejagung sepekan lalu, dan kini dalam proses.

Secara terpisah Fran Lukman menuturkan, kasus ini kasus lama yang pada tahun 2002 sudah disidangkan. Pada saat itu yang memalsu dan yang menyuruh memalsukan sudah divonis hukuman. Penyidikan kepadanya pun sudah dilakukan dua kali.

Suara Merdeka article here: Massa Datangi Kejaksaan Negeri.

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KP2KKN: Few Prosecutors Disciplined in Jateng

Suara Merdeka reports that seven prosecutors faced disciplinary action in the first half of the year.  Eko Haryanto, of KP2KKN, claimed this was low compared to other provinces.

Tujuh jaksa di Jateng dijatuhi sanksi karena melanggar disiplin. Jenis sanksi tersebut beragam, mulai sanksi ringan, sedang, hingga berat. Dua di antaranya dari Kejaksaan Negeri (Kejari) Sragen, tiga dari Kejari Purbalingga, satu dari Kejari Semarang, dan satu orang dari Kejati Jateng.

Hal itu dikatakan Kajati Jateng Bambang Waluyo melalui Kepala Seksi Penerangan Hukum Eko Suwarni, Senin (23/7). Menurut Eko, jumlah jaksa nakal di Jateng jauh lebih sedikit dibanding kejaksaan di provinsi lain.
“Tujuh itu didapat dari delapan laporan dan pengaduan sejak Januari hingga Juli 2012. Pengaduan di daerah lain lebih banyak, di Jateng relatif sedikit. Jenis sanksi ditentukan oleh tim pengawasan,” jelas Eko. Tiga dari tujuh jaksa tersebut terkena sanksi ringan, tiga lainnya sanksi sedang, dan satu jaksa dijatuhi sanksi berat. Namun, Eko enggan membeberkan secara detail pelanggaran-pelanggaran tersebut.
Not sure why Eko refused to provide more details.  I personally think names and violations should be made public.
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The Rise and Fall of Bo Xilai

Solid article by Jamil Aderlini on the rise and fall of both Bo Xilai as well as his father Bo Yibo in today’s Financial Times.  It’s been fascinating to follow this case; and it’ll be interesting to see how it finishes.  There was initially quite a lot of dramatic reporting about its implications for the upcoming leadership transition, but this article’s current assessment is that the transition is currently back on track:

Given Bo’s enormous popularity among ordinary people, an unconvincing official account backed by threadbare evidence could lead many Chinese to assume the entire affair was a stitch-up and Bo was the victim of political infighting. On the other hand, if the case against him is presented too fully, with gory details of corruption, murder and plots, then the public may question how someone so craven and deranged could rise to the top of the political system, and scrutiny may turn to other senior leaders. For now, the once-in-a-decade leadership transition scheduled for October or November appears to be back on track. Some analysts are even saying that without Bo’s destabilising presence, a more harmonious and effective leadership will emerge.

The extreme swings in the careers of political leaders that China’s system produces is quite astonishing.

His father during the cultural revolution…

Bo Yibo was sent to prison, where he endured torture at the hands of his fanatical captors, while Bo Xilai’s mother, Hu Ming, killed herself or was murdered while a captive of Red Guards, according to differing accounts.

But after the death of Mao…

His father was the revolutionary Red Army commander Bo Yibo, one of the all-powerful party elders, known as the “eight immortals”, who controlled Chinese politics from behind the scenes throughout the 1980s and early 1990s.

And Bo Xilai during the cultural revolution…

The chaotic tide soon turned against their children and Bo Xilai was thrown into prison at the age of 17. He spent nearly five years in jail and in Camp 789, a labour camp for children of disgraced senior officials.

In the 1990s…

[I]n 1993 Bo Xilai was named mayor of Dalian, thanks in part to lobbying by his father, who by this stage had taken a keen interest in promoting his son’s political career.

But his father’s death in 2003 set him back…

By most accounts, Bo was one of the people considered at the 17th Communist party congress in 2007 for advancement to the nine-member politburo standing committee, which in effect rules China, and he had his sights set on being named at least a vice-premier at that time. But his father’s death in January that year reduced his political clout, and staunch opposition from many serving and retired officials, including Premier Wen Jiabao, ultimately ruined his chances. Bo was sent out to the provinces – to the steamy south-western metropolis of Chongqing on the banks of the Yangtze River.

And before the Heywood case he was tipped to join the nine-member Politburo Standing Committee…

The death of an obscure British consultant had brought down one of China’s most powerful politicians, a man who had been favoured to ascend to the ruling nine-member Communist party politburo standing committee at a once-in-a-decade power transition later this autumn.

Of course individuals rise and fall in democratic systems (the recent Republican primary!), but the swings are certainly not as extreme and the processes driving the swings are very different.

The full article is available here: Bo Xilai: Power, Death and Politics.

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Corruption persists in Hong Kong?

Last week Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) charged two billionaire businessmen with paying about $4.1 million in bribes to civil servants in relation to property deals between 2000 and 2009.  Here’s the New York Times:

On Friday, the Hong Kong Independent Commission Against Corruption, or I.C.A.C., charged the two brothers with bribery and misconduct.

The charges accuse the Kwoks and two other men — Thomas Chan Kui-yuen, executive director of Sun Hung Kai Properties; and Kwan Hung-sang, a businessman also known as Francis — of conspiring to provide Rafael Hui, the former chief secretary of the Hong Kong civil service, with the use of two apartments, as well as unsecured loans, in return for unspecified favors.

The case is of particularly interest because Hong Kong’s independent corruption agency is often cited as a model for other countries and Hong Kong is often cited as one of the few countries that have successfully reduced corruption in recent years.  For example, I heard Hong Kong (and Singapore) given as examples of success at a conference last week–see here.   Thus this case could further increase the reputation of its independent agency if it is successful, but I wonder whether, at the same time, it has the potential to partially undermine the city’s reputation as a success case.  I would hypothesise that low-level bureaucratic corruption has been reduced because corruption has been centralized–that a consolidation of political and economic power allowed state institutions to successfully crack-down on low-level (and decentralized) corruption.

New York Times article: Hong Kong Billionaires Charged With Bribery.

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