Kickback to officials was meant for Muhaimin: KPK prosecutors
Prosecutors from the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) told a Jakarta court that a Rp 1.5 billion (US$165,000) payment accepted by two officials at the Manpower and Transmigration Ministry was to be given to minister and National Awakening Party (PKB) chairman Muhaimin Iskandar.
KPK prosecutors made the allegations on Friday when demanding that the Jakarta Corruption Court sentence Muhaimin subordinate I Nyoman Suisnaya to four-and-a-half years in jail for accepting a gratuity on his behalf.
The prosecutors told the court that Nyoman, together with accomplices in the case, was guilty of violating the 2001 Anticorruption Law. Nyoman, who was the secretary to the ministry’s director general for development of transmigration area, is barred from receiving any gifts or cash in his capacity as a public official.
The bribery case made headlines after Nyoman and another Muhaimin subordinate, Dadong Irbarelawan, were allegedly caught accepting the Rp 1.5 billion bribe from Dharnawati, a businesswoman from PT Alam Jaya Papua, on Aug. 25 last year.
It is alleged that the cash was part of Rp 2 billion to be paid by Dharnawati to win a tender bid for an infrastructure project in Papua. Dharnawati had yet to supply the remaining Rp 500 million.
The bribes were expected to total Rp 7.3 billion — or 10 percent of the project cost.
Dharnawati has been sentenced to two-and-a-half years in jail for paying the bribe, while Dadong faces five years in prison as demanded by prosecutors earlier this week.
“Facts from this trial have revealed that Rp 1.5 billion in money withdrawn from Dharnawati’s bank account was to be allocated for Minister Muhaimin Iskandar,” prosecutor Muhibuddin said.
He added that Dadong, with Nyoman’s knowledge, called Dharnawati to discuss the payment on Aug. 23, 2011.
Nyoman’s immediate supervisor, Jamaluddin Malik, was also accused of helping to seal the deal during Friday’s court hearing.
Muhaimin and Jamaluddin have not yet been named suspects in the case.
Prosecutors also said that Muhaimin confidante M. Fauzi told Jamaluddin, using Dadong’s cell phone, that he had been entrusted to accept the cash as one of the minister’s aides and a PKB member.
The prosecutors also demanded that Nyoman pay a Rp 200 million fine or serve an additional three months in jail.
Nyoman told the court that he would file a defense statement.
Presiding judge Sudjatmiko has adjourned the trial until Thursday.
Outside court, Nyoman told reporters that the money was never intended for the minister and shifted the blame to members of the House of Representatives’ budget committee.
“The money was a commitment fee for the House’s budget committee,” he alleged.
The project at the center of the case involved a regional transfer of funds that was proposed by the Manpower and Transmigration Ministry, with consent from Finance Minister Agus Martowardojo and the House’s budgetary committee. The allocation was initially to provide task assistance, before it was later listed as a regional transfer through the Acceleration of Infrastructure Development Program (PPID) fund.
Dharnawati’s company would win the project soon after the funds were transferred to the four targeted regions.
Muhaimin and four leaders of the budget committee have repeatedly denied asking for kickbacks from Dharnawati’s company when questioned by the KPK.