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People call for probe of graft in govt projects

25th July 2011 | 2.644 Views
Jakarta  (ANTARA News) - Calls on law enforcing institutions to investigate alleged corruption in government projects have been on the rise since the case of corruption suspect former Democrat Party treasurer Nazaruddin came up to the surface of late.

Legal institutions, such as the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), police and the Attorney General`s Office (AGO) should have the guts to investigate alleged bribery practices in government projects such as the alleged bribery in an athlete center project in Hambalang village, Bogor, West Java.

Contractors of the Hambalang project, PT Adhi Karya and PT Wijaya Karya, are accused by Nazaruddin that they have won the tenders because they give bribes. Therefore, the KPK and AGO are called on to summon and examine the managements of the two companies.

"The KPK and AGO, should act and investigate the case in order to prove whether the allegation by Nazaruddin is true or not, Executive Director of Public Policy Study Center Sofyano Zakaria said last week in response to Nazaruddin`s accusation.

Nazaruddin who is also a legislator of the Democrat Party (PD) fled to Singapore one day before he was banned from overseas trip recently in connection with his alleged involvement in a corruption case worth Rp3.2 billion in the construction of a SEA Games athlete house in Palembang, South Sumatra.

Sofyano urged the KPK to investigate the Hambalang athlete case. He called on the anti-graft body not to make red-handed arrest only," KPK should not only catch red-handed suspects with evidence", he said.

However, according to Ichsanuddin Noorsy, director of Public Policy Study Institute, legal facts are needed to take the alleged Hambalang bribery case to the legal process. Yet, in the reality context, what have been said by Nazarduddin can all be categorized as a fact of an event whose investigation does not need the burden of proof principle.

In a telephone conversation with a private TV station last week, Nazaruddin said that the Hambalang athlete training center project was one of the projects whose tender winners had been decided even before they were called.

Nazaruddin said PT Adhi Karya and PT Wijaya Karya paid Rp100 billion in bribes to win the tenders for the project worth Rp1.5 trillion. In the conversation from his hideouts overseas, Nazaruddin said that PT Anugrah Nusantara played a role in arranging government contracts whose funds were to be taken from the revised state budget.

PT Anugrah Nusantara, which Nazaruddin said belongs to Anas Urbaningrum, general chairman of the ruling Democrat Party (PD), collected a lot (of funds) from state-owned companies (SOE) such as Adhi Karya (ADHI) and Wijaya Karya (Wika) to enable them to win a tender.

The Hambalang project is a sports center project designed for athletes in Hambalang village, Citeureup sub district, Bogor district, West Java.

This athlete training center consisted of several buildings, such as dormitory and training halls. This project which belongs to the Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs, sits on an area of 32 hectares and is expected to be completed in 2013.

Two state-owned enterprises operating in the construction business, Adhi Karya and Wijaya Karaya are the winner of the project. Based on first quarter 2011 financial report of PT Adhi Karya, the project is worth Rp1.518 trillion.

In the joint-venture business firm of the project, named Adhi Wika JO, Adhi Karya owns 70 percent of the shares while the remaining 30 percent belong to Wijaya Karya. The financial report also shows that the project is still undergoing.

According to Ichsanuddin, what was revealed by Nazaruddin in the TV telephone conversation was a normal practice in the business world, yet if the bribery practices involved state institutions they could have bad impact on the enforcement of the law. This is because bribery practices which involved government institutions would prompt corrupt practices.

Thus, the bribery case with the two state-owned firms is a public secrete. What has been done by Adhi Karya and Wijaya Karya is a normal practice in the business world anywhere.

Conspiracy of that kind in the country will only end with moral and social sanctions from the public. This is because the legal system in Indonesia is still trapped in the legal positivism aspect.

Researcher of Institute for Development of Economics and Finance Indonesia, Aviliani, said meanwhile that state-owned companies had practiced bribery cases since a long ago. Yet in recent days cases of this kind of practices in publicly listed state firms had declined because these companies were required to operate transparently and openly.

They are required to report to the Capital Market Supervisory Board - Financial Institution (Bapepam-LK) the process of each of the tender they have organized.

She said that bribery practices at state-owned companies which were not yet publicly listed such as Pertamina (oil and gas firm) and PLN (electricity) was still difficult to be monitored.

In this case, Aviliani expressed hoped that political parties would not disturb national development by seeking advantage for only a group of people. What has been accused of by Nazruddin should serve as a reminder for political parties.

"Nazaruddin`s disclosure is only a peak of an iceberg that calls for good governance in projects involving state companies," she said.

Nazaruddin, whose whereabouts are now unknown, has become fugitive. He is linked to a corruption case in the SEA Games athlete house in Pelambang. Rosalina Manulang, one of the suspects in the case, when grilled by KPK said she was a subordinate of Muhammad Nazaruddin.