Wed, 06 Aug 2003

Manimaren suspected to have killed self

Damar Harsanto, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

Businessman Marimutu Manimaren, 46, died on Tuesday morning, after apparently committing suicide by jumping out of a window of a suite on the 56th floor of Aston Hotel near the Semanggi cloverleaf in South Jakarta.

The body of the youngest brother of the country's largest textile firm PT Texmaco Jaya's president director, Marimutu Sinivasan, will be buried on Wednesday at Kampung Kandang cemetery, Ciganjur, South Jakarta.

Manimaren is survived by his wife and two children. They currently live in the United States.

Setiabudi Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Kusdaryanto confirmed that the man of Indian ancestry was alone in his suite before the tragedy took place at 5:15 a.m.

His body hit a canopy on the fifth floor before falling on a Toyota Kijang van, license plate number B 2173 UN, parked in front of the hotel's lobby.

"There were footprints on the table leaning against the window.... From that we suspect that he deliberately jumped (out of the window)," Kusdaryanto said.

However, police said they did not find any message left by Manimaren in his deluxe suite, which costs Rp 950,000 (US$112) per night.

The deputy treasurer of Golkar Party checked into the hotel on Monday at around 9:30 a.m. although he had booked the suite since Sunday. Driver Udin was only told to drop him at the hotel "because he was feeling dizzy".

"He had sent an SMS to his driver to pick him up on Tuesday at 7:30 a.m.," Kusdaryanto said.

Half an hour before Udin picked up his boss, Manimaren's corpse had already been taken to Cipto Mangunkusumo General Hospital for an autopsy.

A source at the hospital morgue said that Manimaren suffered severe fractures to the neck and ribs as well as head injuries.

Manimaren's relatives declined to comment on the tragedy.

Golkar Party deputy treasurer Setya Novanto said that Manimaren had not been active in the party for the last three years and four months because he was busy managing his business.

Manimaren chaired three textile companies which have no direct link to Texmaco. The companies are PT Ungaran Sari Garments in Ungaran, Central Java; PT Citra Abadi Sejati and PT Busana Perkasa Garments, both located in Bogor, some 60 kilometers south of Jakarta.

Communications director of PT Texmaco Jaya Nina Larasati said that Manimaren did not hold a position in the company.

The Texmaco Group owes some US$29 million to Bank BNI and another Rp 29 trillion ($3.4 billion) to the Indonesia Bank Restructuring Agency (IBRA).

Despite the police statement that his death was an apparent suicide, another Golkar Party senior member A.A. Baramuli, who is close to the late Manimaren, said that he doubted Manimaren had committed suicide.

"He was a very dynamic person. I doubt he would do such a thing," said the former South Sulawesi governor after visiting the morgue.

South Jakarta Police chief of detectives Comr. Merdisyam said that Jakarta Police chief Insp. Gen. Makbul Padmanagara had ordered a thorough investigation into Manimaren's death.

"There is the possibility that it was a suicide, but Manimaren was a business and political figure so we have to look into all possibilities," Merdisyam said.