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Jakarta Post
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Another journalist speaks of intimidation

  • Yemris Fointuna

    The Jakarta Post

Kupang | Sat, December 17 2011 | 04:41 pm

Another violent incident against a journalist has been reported in Rote-Ndao, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), with an alleged abduction of a female reporter over her news coverage.

Endang Sidin, who works with local daily Erende Pos, reported that she had been abducted by a public order police member with the initials JT, who kept her in the regency secretariat office.

When reached by The Jakarta Post from the regency capital of Baa, Endang claimed she was intimidated with murder threats over her planned report on the involvement of civil servants in project brokerage.

“On Thursday, I interviewed a tender committee member from Kuli village office about village
road construction projects worth Rp 187 million that were derived from the Rural Infrastructure Development Program (PPIP) from this year’s state budget. The project was won by CV Tugu Mandiri, believed to be owned by JT,” she said, adding that JT won the tender at Rp 167 million.

According to Endang, the tender process diverted from the guidelines as JT was an active civil servant currently working as a public order police member.

As she arrived home after the interview at around 10 p.m., she added, JT called her and threatened to kill her if she wrote the report.

JT was said to be irritated by the journalist questioning about the tender procedure.

“Why should you bother asking about me joining the tender,” Endang quoted JT as saying, adding he slammed the phone down immediately.

The following day, Endang went out to interview Rote Ndao regency secretary Agustinus Oragero for
her story.

“As I arrived at the regent’s office, JT chased after me while raising his hand and trying to hit me. I took shelter in the regency secretary’s room. JT tried to burst into the room but the secretary blocked him. He stood at the door while brandishing his fist to me,” she said.

Endang contacted Rote-Ndao Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Widy Atmono but he did not pick up the phone.

“I then called House of Representatives member Sarah Lery Mboeik and told her about the threats and abduction. Lery called the NTT Police chief and 30 minutes later I was evacuated by a traffic police car,” she said.

The incident came just a few days after an arson attack, targeted at Rote-Ndao News reporter Dance Henukh, who was reported to still be taking shelter at a relative’s house.

His house was set on fire on Dec. 12 and his 1-month-old baby died allegedly from shock.

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