Rushed Appointment of KPK’s Deputy for Enforcement

KPK finally has a new Deputy for Enforcement after this position was vacated by Inspector General (Pol) Heru Winarko, who was inaugurated as Head of BNN. The new Deputy for Enforcement is Brigadier General Firli who previously served as the Chief of NTB Regional Police. The process of appointment, from the vacancy to inauguration, is relatively short, i.e. from the beginning of March to the first week of April 2018. Will this rushed recruitment process produce an official in accordance with the needs of the KPK, able to improve the performance of the institution’s prosecution in the future?

The Deputy for Enforcement is a strategic position in KPK because it is related to law enforcement of various corruption cases handled by KPK. One of the main tasks of this official is to conduct inquiries, investigations and prosecutions of all cases handled by KPK. The deputy, with the KPK leaders, will decide the priority of handling of corruption cases and raise the status of cases in accordance with the three stages of case handling.

The KPK is currently facing two major problems in the prosecution of corruption cases that are closely related to the authority of Deputy for Enforcement. The first problem is the settlement of ongoing corruption cases and the completion of yet unresolved corruption cases. Unresolved cases handled by the KPK to date include the BLBI case, Century Bank case, Petral case, Pelindo II case, Jasindo case, and others. The completion of these cases is highly dependent on the Deputy for Enforcement of the KPK, who leads the Directorate of Inquiry and Directorate of Investigation.

The second problem is the internal conflict within KPK, especially among the investigators at the Department of Prosecution. It has become publicly known that there is competition and dispute between the groups of investigators within the KPK. This dispute is evident from the statement of the KPK Director for Investigation in front of the Special Committee of Inquiry of KPK concerning the relationship of KPK internal investigators with investigators from the Police. This conflict re-emerged after the KPK Director for Investigation made a controversial statement related to an e-mail related to allegations of a ‘Trojan horse’ in the KPK.

These two issues will be tough tasks to be resolved by the Deputy for Enforcement. Therefore, the position of Deputy for Enforcement must be filled by an officer with integrity, free from the interest regarding various cases handled by the KPK and able to resolve the conflict among investigators within the department itself. If this official has been contaminated by any particular interest in the first place, especially with regard to corruption, internal conflict or institutional weakening, then the process of recruitment and inauguration will be in vain, and even can lead to catastrophe for the KPK.

Considering the decision of the KPK chairperson has been taken and Brigadier General Firli has been inaugurated as Deputy for Enforcement on April 6, 2018, the public can only hope that the selection will add new energy to the KPK in cracking down on corruption cases, and not the other way around, adding to the burden or creating a new ‘counterattack’ against the KPK. *** (Febri/Adnan)

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