Govt and House united against KPK

Narcotics Law would retain their legitimacy after the House had integrated existing specific laws into the KUHP.

House Deputy Speaker Fadli Zon concurred, saying “We should not see crimes partially. All crimes should be dealt with via one channel.”

This is not the first time President Joko “Jokowi” Widodos administration has squared up to the KPK; in June, after a mounting public outcry, the President rejected a plan by the House to amend the 2002 KPK law.

One of the key provisions that the House had proposed amending was the commissions authority to conduct surveillance or wiretapping during the preliminary phase of investigations. Without that authority, the KPK would be unable to launch sting operations aimed at catching suspects red-handed accepting bribes.

The goverment and the House of Representatives are united in their systematic attempts to deligjtimate the authority of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) despite widespread public support for the antigraft body, a commissioner has alleged.

The ongoing discussion in the legislature of a government-proposed bill to integrate specific laws, including the corruption and money-laundering laws, into the Criminal Code (KUHP) could end up destroying the authority of the KPK to investigate corruption cases, deputy KPKchairman Indriyanto Seno Adjisaid on Sunday.

Indriyanto, who is also a professor of law at the University of Indonesia, pointed out that since the KUHP regulated punishments for specific crimes, extraordinary offenses like corruption and money laundering would be lumped in as general crimes with no need for special handling by lex specialist institutions such as the KPK. The move, he warned, could therefore pave the way for the KPKs dissolution.

The House has included the KUHP revision on its National Legislation Program (Prolegnas) priority list, with both the government and die House ignoring the KPKs request to shelve the integration proposal.

“We have written an official letter to the government asking it to scrap the plan. If it doesnt, the KPK will become a toothless tiger,” Indriyanto told The Jakarta Post on Sunday.

Anticipating the worst-case scenario, Indriyanto said that if the House and government insisted on inserting specific criminal articles into the KUHP, the revision should include a dear stipulation that the KPK could continue to prosecute corruption andmoney-laundering cases using the 2001 Corruption Law and die 2010 Money-Laundering Law.

The government has maintained there is no hidden agenda behind the proposal, claiming that is simply attempting to implement “legal codification”, a system providing a legal umbrella for law-enforcement institutions to prosecute all crimes, including specific crimes.

Padjajaran University legal expert Romli Atmasasmita criticized the codification strategy, arguing that the plan ignored the increasingly sophisticated strategies of certain crimes, and the resultant need for special handling.

“If implemented, this total codification system would call into question the continued existence of the KPK, the National Counter-terrorism Agency [BNPT], the National Narcotics Agency [BNN], the corruption courts and the Human Rights Court,” Romli said through his twitter account @romliatma.

Responding to the criticism, Law and Human Rights Minister Yasonna Hamonangan Laoly insisted that the revision would not affect the KPKs mission to eradicate corruption.

“There are various views [regarding the plan], but the point is that the KPK will not be paralyzed. The government respects articles on specific crimes, so the plan will not destroy the KPKs authority,” Yasonna said.

He added that other lex specialist laws such as the Terrorism Law.

(The Jakarta Post)

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