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Ombudsman responds to issue of merger plan with corruption agency KPK

Tempo - April 5, 2024

Hendrik Yaputra and Bagus Pribadi, Jakarta – Chairman of the Ombudsman, Muhammad Najih, admitted on Thursday that he was not aware of the issue of merging the Ombudsman with the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK). The Ombudsman has also never been invited to discuss the plan to eliminate the KPK's enforcement function.

According to Najih, the Ombudsman is currently working according to its law-mandated duties.

The Ombudsman, Najih said, supports and respects every effort to prevent maladministration and corruption, including through "regulations and related programs".

Najih added that the issue of integration between the Ombudsman and KPK needs to be appreciated in the context of knowledge development and the formation of progressive legal politics for the benefit of the nation.

ICW researcher Kurnia Ramadhana previously heard that the National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas) was discussing the merger of KPK and the Ombudsman. However, the merger will only focus on the field of prevention.

KPK Deputy Chairman Alexander Marwata said that his side has not received any information regarding the merger. However, there is a possibility that KPK will join the Ombudsman and focus on prevention.

"So far we have not received information (on the merger) but of course, there is a possibility for that. We learned from South Korea, which had their (corruption agency) merged with the Ombudsman since it held too much power," said Alexander on Tuesday, April 2, 2024.

However, Alex leaves the decision entirely to the government in the form of a law.

The Deputy for Politics, Law, Defense, and Security at the Ministry of National Development Planning Bogat Widyatmoko denied the issue. Bappenas has never discussed the merger, he said.

"Bappenas has never issued a statement related to the merger with the Ombudsman, as well as the elimination of the enforcement deputy of KPK," Bogat said in an official statement yesterday.

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1853613/ombudsman-responds-to-issue-of-merger-plan-with-corruption-agency-kp