Wed, 03 Sep 2003

House indecisive on presidency bill

JAKARTA: Two years ago, the House of Representatives (DPR) agreed that it would deliberate upon the presidency bill, but the special committee tasked with debating the bill has inexplicably not begun.

A member of the special committee, Zein Badjeber, provided an excuse on Tuesday, saying he had never been invited to discuss the bill.

"We are just waiting for further developments," Zein of the United Development Party (PPP) said here.

A plenary meeting of the House in June 2001 agreed to deliberate the bill, which was drafted by the House members to prevent abuses of power by the President.

The bill was drafted when then president Abdurrahman Wahid had been mistakenly accused of misusing US$2 million in humanitarian aid for Aceh from Brunei Sultan Hasanal Bolkiah.

However, the special committee has never convened a meeting to discuss the bill. -- JP