Dengue fever claim delays trial of Atut’s brother


Haeril Halim, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | National | Thu, February 27 2014, 9:49 AM

The first hearing in the trial of politically wired Banten businessman Tubagus “Wawan” Chaeri Wardana, the younger brother of Banten Governor Ratu Atut Chosiyah, was once again postponed on Thursday due to the defendant’s ill-health, his lawyer confirmed.

The hearing was first postponed on Monday due to Wawan’s deteriorating health.

Wawan’s lawyer, Pia Akbar Nasution, said she had received a recommendation from a team of doctors at the hospital where Wawan was currently being treated, confirming that her client was suffering from dengue fever.

“If Pak Wawan’s health improves, the trial will probably start next week,” Pia said on Wednesday.

The lawyer lashed out at the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) for failing to provide a healthy environment at its detention center.

“The question as to how he contracted dengue fever should be directed to the KPK. The KPK should do regular fumigation at the detention center,” she said on.

KPK spokesman Johan Budi responded by saying “the KPK regularly fumigates the center”.

Wawan is scheduled to be indicted for allegedly paying bribes to former Constitutional Court chief justice Akil Mochtar in relation to a 2013 Lebak election dispute, in support of a candidate who was expected to retain control in the regency, and the 2011 Banten gubernatorial election in which Atut’s victory was challenged by the losing candidates.

Akil and Atut have both been detained by the KPK. Akil was indicted last week for graft and money laundering, while the KPK is still completing Atut’s dossier in the case.

The KPK has also named Wawan and Atut suspects in two separate graft cases involving the procurement of medical equipment for the South Tangerang and Banten administrations. Subsequently, the KPK added money laundering to the list of charges against Wawan.

Companies owned by Wawan were awarded several state projects worth billions of rupiah, raising suspicions among local activists that the businessman had benefited from his sister’s powerful network in the province.

On Wednesday, KPK investigators raided four local agencies in the Banten capital, Serang, during which they confiscated documents relating to the procurement tenders.

The KPK also questioned Banten General Hospital’s public services head, Jana Sunawati, to collect additional information regarding the medical equipment purchased under the Banten administration procurements.

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