Maharani, Jakarta – Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI) Director Asfinawati says that President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo is responsible for efforts to weaken the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) which have become apparent recently.
According to Asfinawati, aside from other actors such as the House of Representatives (DPR), the President also played a part.
"There were many different actors, but at the very least the one who had an obligation was the President. At the very least he neglected his obligation [to protect the KPK]", said Asfinawati in a virtual discussion titled "Can we still have hope in the KPK now", on Friday May 7.
Asfinawati said that although Widodo did indeed never sign the revised KPK Law Number 19/2019, he gave his agreement and allowed it to pass in to law in accordance with the law. Widodo never tried to stop or cancel the deliberations on revising the KPK Law.
"Yet at the same time in September 2019, the president postponed revisions to the KUHP [Criminal Code]. And this has been so to this day. Could the president have done that with the draft KPK Law? He could. Because the evidence is that he could do it with the KUHP. But he didn't do it", she said.
Although Asfinawati does not deny that there were other actors behind Widodo who were involved in revising the KPK law, once again she asserted that it is quite fitting that the Indonesian people ask for the president to be held liable.
"Are we not a constitutional state, so we're not controlled by the mafia?", asked Asfinawati.
"The one's we voted for weren't the mafia behind them (the presidential and vice presidential candidates), but the presidential and vice presidential candidates themselves. So is it too much now if after taking office, that the people ask the president and the vice president to be held accountable", she added.
Much has been heard about the issue of weakening the KPK following news that 75 KPK employees were declared to have failed to meet the criteria to become state civil servants based on a civics or nationalism test (TWK).
The transfer of KPK employees into state civil servants is a result of the revisions to the KPK law in 2019. Many however have questioned the results of the test.
This is because the 75 KPK employees who are said to have failed to pass the test were investigators, criminal investigators and senor employees who have outstanding track records in fighting corruption.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Anggap Ada Upaya Pelemahan KPK, Direktur YLBHI Sebut Presiden Bertanggung Jawab".]