The Jakarta Post
Amid the social media storm surrounding the car former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has kept since he left office in 2014, the executive of his Democratic Party revealed that the car was not in a good shape and often broke down.
Party secretary general Hinca Pandjaitan said the Mercedes Benz S-600 “is ten years old, the condition is not so good and very easily breaks down … just last week we finished another series of repairs on it.”
“As a matter of fact, the car that has been provided by the state is rarely used by SBY,” Hinca said via his Twitter account.
“The last time the car was used [by Yudhoyono] was in September 2016. After 20 minutes, the car suddenly broke down,” he added.
14. mobil tsb digunakan terakhir kali oleh beliau pd bulan september 2016 lalu, stlh 20 menit digunakan seketika itu juga langsung rusak.— HincaPandjaitanXIII (@hincapandjaitan) March 21, 2017
Previously, Presidential Secretariat head Darmansjah Djumala said Yudhoyono had been lent the presidential car. “Yudhoyono has expressed a commitment to return the car,” he said on Tuesday.
However, Dems spokesperson Rachland Nasidik said Yudhoyono was legally allowed to continue to use the car, citing Law No. 7/1978 saying that the state provides a car and driver for former presidents and vice presidents.
Former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono addresses a press conference at the Wisma Proklamasi in Jakarta on Feb. 1.(JP/Donny Fernando)
Last Saturday, a similar car used as presidential vehicle of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo broke down when he was in West Kalimantan. “It broke down after driving for approximately 30 minutes,” said Bey Machmudin, head of the Presidential Press Bureau, as quoted by Warta Kota.
In September 2016, the 10-year-old car experienced engine failure when Jokowi was visiting East Java. (bbs)