Wed, 30 Apr 2003

National Police to take over cases

BANDUNG, West Java: National Police Headquarters will likely take over from the West Java Police the investigation of possible corruption cases in the provincial administration, according to an officer.

The deputy chief of the directorate handling corruption cases, Sr. Comr. Marsudi, said the National Police planned the move because it was thought the provincial police were moving too slowly on the cases.

"We are waiting for the National Police to fulfill their promise to handle the corruption cases immediately," Wirawan, spokesman for the West Java Anti-Corruption Alliance, said after meeting with Marsudi here on Tuesday.

He said Marsudi promised to send a special team to the province to continue the investigation into the cases.

Wirawan said the provincial police were investigating 22 public officials in the province suspected of having siphoned off Rp 9 billion from the province's 2000 and 2001 budgets, but so far no suspects had been named.

He declined to elaborate on the cases because police were still investigating.

Reliable sources said the police had also been asked to investigate a decision by Governor R. Nuriana to set aside Rp 25 billion for the purchase of land for 100 provincial councillors, the alleged embezzlement of Rp 224 billion in taxes from street lighting and possible illegal payments of Rp 1 billion per year to the provincial police. --JP

;JP;RMS; ANPAa..r.. Across-NSumatra-warned-terror N. Sumatra warned of terror attacks JP/5/Across

N. Sumatra warned of terror attacks

MEDAN, North Sumatra: North Sumatra Governor Tengku Rizal Nurdin called on security officials and residents to remain alert for possible attacks by the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) and extremist groups.

"Regents and mayors should coordinate with the local military and police to monitor newcomers in their areas in order to prevent unwanted incidents," the governor said during a seminar on terrorist attacks here on Tuesday.

He said two recent bombings in Jakarta should serve as a warning for the province that GAM was intensifying its activities, and could use the province as a safe haven if the government begins military operations in Aceh.

Insp. Gen. Ansyad Mbay, chief of the antiterrorism desk at the office of the coordinating minister for political and security affairs, said that besides GAM, the activities of the Jamaah Islamiyah terrorist group also were being monitored.

"The two groups have been involved in all of the bombings (in Indonesia) between 1999 and 2002," he said, adding that there were indications that GAM was behind the recent blasts near the UN office in Jakarta and at the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport. --JP

;JP;RMS; ANPAa..r.. Across-Papua-orchids-extinction Papua's orchids face extinction JP/5/Across

Papua's orchids face extinction

JAYAPURA, Papua: The 2,770 orchid species found in Papua are in danger of extinction because of rampant theft, says Papua Governor Jaap Solossa.

"Illegal hunters are looting these beautiful orchid species from the vast forests in the province. We need an orchid seedling plantation to prevent the protected species from disappearing," he said when opening an orchid exhibit here on Tuesday.

He said the wholesale felling of trees in industrial forests also contributed to the decreasing number of orchid species in the province.

Many of Papua's orchid species are known worldwide because of their unique forms and colors.

Papuan Orchid Association (PAI) chairwoman Regina Karma said her association was trying to empower locals to farm orchids to improve their welfare.

"Besides running several plantations, PAI also supplies orchids from locals for export," she said. --JP