To all regional heads in Indonesia, consider this a warning from the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) Chairman Firli Bahuri. The commission recently revealed that tips of graft committed by regional heads often come from those closest to them.
In a webinar earlier this week, Firli said that KPK usually receive reports from deputies or regional secretaries – though one regent was taken into custody after he was reported by his own wife, apparently out of spite.
"Reports on corruption that were carried out by regional heads usually came from their closest people. We'll take an example, such as when we caught a regent who was reported by his wife. Imagine this: a wife reported [her regent husband] who's corrupt, why do you think she did it?" Firli said.
"Because [that wife] only received the [bribe] money, but didn't get to enjoy it. As soon as she received the money, it was immediately distributed to the second wife, third wife, fourth wife, and the fifth wife.
"She sent us a picture, [telling us] 'Sir, here's the money that my husband just received. I went all out during his campaign, but once he was elected it was distributed to the other wives.'"
While Firli didn't identify the regent in question, he stressed that the story was real.
Since assuming the role of KPK chairman in December of last year, regents that have been detained during Firli's stint include Sidoarjo's Saiful Ilah, North Labuhanbatu's Khairuddin Syah Sitorus, and East Kutai's Ismunandar – – though it's not immediately clear whether any of them is in a polygamous marriage.
During the webinar, Firli also mentioned that KPK will detain a regent and a mayor for corruption next week.