Yudhoyono confuses the public even further

Posted: November 25, 2009 in English Version

Indonesians are becoming even more confused over President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s speech, during which he was expected to provide a concrete resolution to the scandal involving the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), the police and the Attorney General’s Office.

A political analyst and activist from the Indonesian Civilized Circle (Lima), Ray Rangkuti, said on Monday that the speech did not resolve any problems regarding the fiasco.

“He talked for around 35 minutes. The first 29-minutes contained no clear points on how to resolve the case. The last five-minutes of the speech did not provide any resolution to the conflict either,” he told The Jakarta Post.

“The President didn’t make any decisions at all. He did not tell the police to drop the commission’s case. He didn’t state any possible punishments for police and AGO officials involved in the case,” he said.

Rangkuti said the speech did nothing but arouse more public curiosity into whether the President seriously intended to combat corruption.

Yudhoyono won a landslide victory during the presidential election last July with more than 60 percent of the votes, which took him to the second term of administration.

During his campaign, Yudhyono promised to combat corruption if he was re-elected.

The police accused two KPK deputies, Bibit Samad Rianto and Chandra M. Hamzah, of bribery, power abuse and extortion.

The fact-finding team established by the President to provide recommendations on the case concluded that all charges lacked evidence and had many unresolved missing links.

The team had earlier recommended that Yudhoyono punish high-ranking officials in the National Police and the AGO for criminalizing the deputies.

The team also told the President to drop the charges against Bibit and Chandra, take action against those involved in the wiretapped conversation with businessman Anggodo Widjojo and reform the National Police and the AGO.

A wiretapped conversations involving police and AGO officials were recently played for the public at the Constitutional Court.

Anggodo allegedly gave bribes to middleman Ari Muladi, who later denied passing on the money to Bibit and Chandra.

Meanwhile, anti-corruption activists, such as Danang Widoyoko from the Indonesian Corruption Watch (ICW), expressed their apparent disappointment in the President’s cryptic statements by demanding he be replaced.

“His statements were definitely unclear. That is why we call to fight and replace him,” a political communication expert, Effendi Gazali, said as quoted by detik.com news portal.

Vice chairman of the Institute for Democracy and Peace (Setara) Bonar Tigor Naipospos also said he was disappointed with the speech, as it did nothing to resolve the conflict between the KPK, the police and the AGO.

“The speech has risked the government’s legitimacy in its intention to eradicate corruption from the country,” he said.

“The President will not follow the recommendations of the fact-finding team. This will *have* also created confusion among officials from the KPK, the police and the AGO,” he added. (nia

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