Thursday, February 23, 2006

Sudigate, Syafruddin's arrest & Pontjo Sutowo

Jakarta Prosecutors Office might have expected headlines when they arrested former IBRA chief Syafruddin Arsyad Temenggung yesterday. In terms of popularity, Syafruddin, once considered as one of the most powerful men in Indonesian economy and a close ally to Taufik Kiemas (husband of former president Megawati Soekarnoputri), might equals ECW Neloe, former Bank Mandiri CEO, who was acquitted early this week.
Surprisingly, most major newspapers run the controversy surrounding cabinet secretary Sudi Silalahi as their headlines instead. They put Syafruddin's case in front page though. But surely media's attentions were very much diverted to the increasingly interesting Sudigate.
While the case was initially considered another empty strike on Sudi just like the previous criticism for letting the State Palace doors open to the fugitives and bad debtors or rumor about the Jaguar car given by media baron Harry Tanoesoedibjo, this time Sudi himself that escalates the controversy when he reported cabinet secretary staffs of forging letters on the embassy building project to the police.
Forging letters! On top of that, it was the police who came to the State Palace to dig information from Sudi, not the other way around like used to be in a country that upholds equality before the law. That's why Kompas chose to put that as headline than Syafruddin. Other newspapers also run their headlines on Sudi's flip-flop statements. Sudi blamed on media, but he should have known media love the flip-flops.
This afternoon, Sudi entertained hundreds of questions and criticism from House Commission II members. And that make the case even more interesting. Sudi claimed there were nine irregularities in the letters published by media and firm on his stance that someone had forged the letters.
But Sudi diverted the arsenals to his friend and boss, president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, when he admitted that he wrote the letters after the president gave the direction (petunjuk) to do so.
"The letters I wrote has only one copy carbon to the president, so the company can't bring the letters to anywhere and considered as a recommendation," he said as quoted by
Petunjuk is a very popular word during Soeharto's 32 year in power. Officers that time could easily defend themselves or convince people with the phrase menurut petunjuk bapak presiden or according to Mr President's directive...
That's why Sudi's letters are considered the reborn of Soeharto's style in this administration, a very bad image.
But the question of political ploy on Sudi deserved an answer. Why now?
To my surprise, today Vice President Jusuf Kalla conducted a meeting with Pontjo Sutowo (a suspect in Hilton corruption case) at the VP's palace. Pontjo was named suspect way before Syafruddin Temenggung (detained last night), but the owner of Hilton hotel still enjoys the courtesy call with the VP. Why prosecutors let Pontjo walks freely while quickly detain Syafruddin? Where's the equality before the law which was SBY-JK's campaign theme?
Hope media would raise the issue with the same portion of attention...Would they?

Labels: ,



Post a Comment

<< Home