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Social Affairs Minister Surrenders in COVID-19 Corruption Case

Social Affairs Minister Surrenders in COVID-19 Corruption Case. Credits

The Corruption Eradication Commission has named Social Affairs Minister Juliari P Batubara as a suspect in a corruption case related to COVID-19 social assistance. Apart from Juliari, the KPK also named four other suspects.

Commission chairman Firli Bahuri said the case originated from information related to the alleged receipt of money by a number of state officials given by Ardian IM in a private capacity, and Harry Sidabuke to Matheus Joko Santoso as the official commitment maker at the Ministry of Social Affairs, Adi Wahyono and Minister of Social Affairs Juliari Batubara.

Relating to Juliari, the money was given through Matheus Joko Santoso and Shelvy N as the secretary at the Ministry of Social Affairs.

“The money was handed over on Saturday 5th December 2020, around 2am Western Indonesia Time in a place in Jakarta,” as quoted by Detik News. 

The cash had previously been prepared by Ardian and Harry in an apartment in Jakarta and in Bandung. It had been stored in seven suitcases, three backpacks, and a small envelope which amounts to around Rp14.5 billion.

Firli Bahuri had previously asked perpetrators of corruption related to funds for handling the COVID-19 pandemic to be prosecuted with the death penalty.

“This is no game. I really ask if someone is caught, I ask to be threatened with the death penalty. Even executed by the death penalty,” said Firli on Wednesday 29th July 2020.

The threat of the death penalty for perpetrators of corruption is regulated in article two paragraph two of the Corruption Act. In that article, it is explained that the death penalty can be imposed if corruption is committed during a national natural disaster, if there are multiple counts of corruption,  or when the country is in a state of economic and monetary crisis.

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