Mon, 22 Mar 1999

City panned for letting probe slide

JAKARTA (JP): City councilors criticized the city administration on Sunday for slow progress made in the investigation of 1,942 malfeasance cases exposed since the 1994/1995 fiscal year.

An attachment note signed by Governor Sutiyoso to the city draft budget for the 1999/2000 fiscal year, a copy of which was made available to the Post, cited 1,941 malfeasance cases in the administration between 1994 and 1998.

The note stated that 348 cases dealt with power misuse, 184 with corruption, 185 with land and housing affairs, 299 with the environment, 480 with public services, 21 with bureaucracy, 140 with law affairs, 177 with personnel affairs cases and 107 with national vigilance.

Only 486 cases, or 25 percent of the total figure, have been investigated.

Contacted separately by The Jakarta Post, deputy head of the United Development Party (PPP) faction Ali Imran Husein, member of Commission A for administration Sylviana Murni, and head of the Indonesian Democratic Party (PDI) Lukman Mokoginta, questioned the investigation approach.

Ali said the figures gave an impression of half-hearted administration handling of the cases.

"Imagine only 25 percent of the malfeasance cases have been investigated during the past five years.

"Moreover, the administration does not provide evidence about the investigation of the 486 cases. How can we believe its report? ...I am really disappointed," he said.

Ali said the cases should be handled by an institution higher than the administration, such as the development finance controller, as "it has been proven that the administration repeatedly does not assiduously probe malfeasance cases".

Both Ali and Lukman said their factions would not hesitate to push the administration to seriously pursue the investigation.

"The administration should be proactive... don't wait until (the cases) bring about people's anger," Lukman said.

Sylviana said the administration was yet to show its transparency, even though Sutiyoso had promised a change.

"Everybody has repeatedly urged the administration to be transparent during the reform era, but I don't see any response," she said. (ind)