Haeril Halim, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | National | Mon, January 13 2014, 10:24 AM
In spite of efforts to win the sympathy of the public, disgraced former Democratic Party chairman Anas Urbaningrum’s efforts to sully the image of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) are in vain.
An Indonesia Corruption Watch (ICW) researcher said Sunday that Anas would fail in his effort to systematically delegitimize the KPK and its handling of the Hambalang sport complex graft case.
“There are particular parties that want to mix the legal case with politics,” Tama S. Langkun of ICW told The Jakarta Post on Sunday, referring to disputes between Anas and the Democratic Party.
A KPK document, which named Anas a suspect in the graft case, circulated a few hours before President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono took over the leadership of the Democratic Party in February 2013. Thereafter, the President instructed Anas to concentrate the legal problems he faced.
Soon after his detention on Friday, Anas made a thinly veiled attack on the President by thanking him for the arrest.
There has also been an attempt to give the impression that the KPK has treated Anas unfairly, for instance by denying him access to food.
On Friday, Deny Haryatna, a member of the Indonesian Movement Association (PPI), an organization established by Anas, said that members of Anas’ family were concerned with the safety of food and drink provided by the KPK.
Members of Anas’ family also tried to paint the KPK in a bad light by accusing the antigraft body of treating him unfairly.
Although visitors are only allowed to visit the KPK detention center during office hours on Monday and Thursday, Anas’ family insisted on bringing him food on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Consequently, the deliveries were rejected by the detention center’s security officers.
“The reasons behind the food delivery were over exaggerated. Not one suspect has ever died while in the custody of the KPK, so why worry?” Tama said.
KPK spokesman Johan Budi said there was no need for the family to bring Anas food as the KPK covered this and if the KPK allowed the family to bring food it would have to go through a thorough security check.
Tama said that whatever efforts were made by Anas’ to win the battle, the KPK would still have the support of the public.
Anas was named a suspect by the KPK in February last year concerning the Rp 2.5 trillion (US$205 million) Hambalang sports complex graft case.
In the dossier of Deddy Kusdinar, another suspect currently on trial in the case, KPK prosecutors accused Anas of accepting a gratuity in the form of a Toyota Harrier while serving as a lawmaker between October 2009 and July 2010. The car was allegedly from PT Adhi Karya, the construction company that won the Hambalang tender.
KPK investigators also accused Anas of accepting Rp 2.2 billion from the same company to fund his campaign during the party’s congress in 2010, the result being he was elected chairman.
On Friday soon after arresting Anas, the KPK questioned Adhi Karya director Teuku Bagus Muhammad Noor as a witness for Anas.
Speaking after being questioned, Teuku said the company’s marketing manager, Arief Taufiqurrahman, had given money to a number of individuals, including House of Representatives’ Speaker Marzuki Alie, to secure a project for the construction of the House’s new building.
Marzuki, a senior member of the Democratic Party, denied the allegations on Sunday.
“There was no money at all. I don’t even know the person [Arief] and the project also has not even been tendered yet. Just ask Arief, did he give me the money? Also ask him does he know MA [Marzuki Alie],” Marzuki said as quoted by tribunnews.com on Sunday.