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Jakarta Post

East Kutai regent, legislative council speaker named graft suspects following arrests

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Sat, July 4, 2020   /   12:11 pm
East Kutai regent, legislative council speaker named graft suspects following arrests East Kutai regent Ismunandar (left) and wife, East Kutai Legislative Regional Council speaker Encek Unguria R. Firgasih (right) are taken to detention centers from the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) headquarters in Jakarta on July 4, 2020 after the antigraft body named them graft suspects in a bribery case pertaining to infrastructure projects in the regency. (Antara/Indrianto Eko Suwarso)

The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) named Ismunandar, the regent of East Kutai in East Kalimantan, as well as his wife, East Kutai Legislative Council (DPRD) speaker Encek Unguria R. Firgasih graft suspects in a bribery case pertaining to several infrastructure projects in the regency.

Both suspects allegedly accepted at least Rp 2.6 billion (US$179,393) from businesspeople Aditya Maharani and Deky Aryanto, whose companies had been working on several infrastructure projects across the regency.

KPK deputy chairman Nawawi Pomolango said Aditya had worked on several projects with a total value of Rp 28.4 billion, while Deky was appointed as a contractor for projects offered by the East Kutai Education Agency valued at Rp 40 billion.

On June 11, Aditya and Deky promised to give Rp 550 million and Rp 2.1 billion, respectively, to the regent through East Kutai Financial and Asset Management Board head Suriansyah and revenue agency head Musyaffa. They also allegedly gave the illicit money to Encek.

The antigraft body suspected Aditya of previously transferring Rp 100 million as an “Idul Fitri holiday bonus [THR]” to Ismunandar, Musyaffa, Suriansyah and East Kutai Public Works Agency head Aswandini on May 19. The businessman also wired Rp 125 million to a bank account owned by an individual identified as Aini for Ismunandar’s campaign in the upcoming regional election.

Read also: KPK asks for nearly Rp 1t in additional funds to support graft fight, change in employment status

“The illicit money was allegedly given because [Ismunandar] guaranteed that companies appointed to work on the projects wouldn’t get their budget cut. Meanwhile, [Encek], as DPRD speaker, intervened in the appointment in the procurement project,” Nawawi said during a press briefing on Friday.

The antigraft body also named Musyaffa, Suriansyah, Aswandini and the two businesspeople as suspects in the case. All suspects were immediately detained in Jakarta.

Nawawi added the investigation against Ismunandar was the first investigation launched after the passing of the revised KPK Law. “We had wiretapped [Ismunandar] after receiving a report from a member of the general public in February.”

Graft busters previously arrested the regent, his wife and 13 others during an operation in Jakarta, East Kutai and the provincial capital of Samarinda on Thursday evening. They seized Rp 170 million in cash, several savings books with a total balance of Rp 4.8 billion and a certificate of time deposit amounting to Rp 1.2 billion.

The arrest operation was the third carried out under the KPK's new leader, Comr. Gen. Firli Bahuri. In January, graft busters netted East Java’s Sidoarjo regent Saiful Ilah and General Elections Commission (KPU) commissioner Wahyu Setiawan in two separate operations. (kuk)