Headlines

Dahlan forwards five more
names to House

State-Owned Enterprises Minister Dahlan Iskan has forwarded to the House of Representatives (DPR) ethics council the names of five more lawmakers who allegedly asked government officials for
kickbacks.

Council chairman M. Prakosa confirmed that he received Dahlan’s report on the shakedowns allegedly conducted by the lawmakers, declining to name the individuals mentioned.

“We will follow up this report,” Prakosa told reporters at the House on Friday.

The report received by the council brings the number of lawmakers implicated by Dahlan in the corruption scandal to eight. The three lawmakers previously named by the minister have been identified as Sumaryoto from the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), Idris Laena from the Golkar Party and Idris Sugeng from the Democratic Party.

Idris was previously implicated in extortion by PT Rajawali Nusantara Indonesia (RNI) president director Ismed Hasan Putro during Ismed’s meeting with the council on Monday.

Idris could not be reached for comment on Thursday.

Another ethics council member, lawmaker Usman Jafar, alleged that Idris demanded 2,000 tons of sugar from the state-run PT RNI to be distributed to his constituents.

On Thursday, PDI-P lawmaker Hendrawan Supratikno, a member of House Commission VI overseeing state-owned firms, said that Idris had only asked Ismed for the sugar.

“However, according to Pak Idris, Pak Ismed misunderstood his request as an attempt to extort him,” Hendrawan told The Jakarta Post.

“Pak Idris told me that he did meet Pak Ismed to ask whether RNI would like to contribute as part of the company’s CSR [corporate society responsibility] program, but later retracted the proposal as the latter refused it,” Hendrawan said.

Hendrawan added that Ismed later directed Idris to RNI’s marketing division after Idris said he wanted to buy the sugar.

“Pak Idris finally bought five tons worth Rp 55 million [US$5,711]. He told me that he also required an opportunity for the wives of Democratic Party politicians to buy some sugar, albeit at lower prices,” Hendrawan said.

“I personally think that it’s OK to ask companies to contribute to programs for voters as part of their CSR programs. This is much more efficient than directly distributing donations,” he added.

According to former State-Owned Enterprises Ministry secretary Said Didu, lawmakers were only minor players in this scandal, which also included high-ranking government officials, local leaders, public figures, NGOs, law enforcers, the media and foreign agents.

“The major players are of course the top ranking officials, who often are involved in making strategic decisions within the ministry,” Said said.

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