Thursday, December 07, 2006

SBY vs JK in the brawl over SOEs

Below is the list of brawls between SBY & JK over important issues at state-owned enterprises, including the management selection (member of the board of directors plus commissioners). It's almost similar with their competition in overseas trips (state visits). It's everywhere! Anybody has the original version of SBY & JK memorandum of understanding on how they would share the power when they decided to join forces in 2004 election?

The recent 'mini' reshuffle at the state-owned oil and gas company PT Pertamina could well explain the brawl. "It's clear that the former chairman of board of commissioner Martiono Hadianto couldn't get along with board of directors. Internally, we could sense that," one Pertamina executive told me this morning.
"The replacement is not merely a management issue, it's a political issue. Everybody knows Martiono was seen as VP's man, while his successor has close relationship with the president," said one executive at SOE who happens to be proposed by MSOE Sugiharto as commissioner at Pertamina but failed to get approval from The Final Evaluation Team (TPA, which selects executives for SOEs).
"Now the balance at Pertamina is two VP's men and two president's men, another one represents SOE Ministry who happens to be close confidante of Sugiharto," executive at the MSOE said.
A week before that, major shakeup occured at another giant SOE, PT Perusahaan Gas Negara (PGN) Tbk. This time, Sutikno named as the new CEO, replacing WMP Simanjuntak (appointed president commissioner).
"Some says Sutikno got the position thanks to strong lobby from PAN's chairman Sutrisno Bachir. But don't expect they'll confirm that. Sutikno is known for his close relationship with Amien Rais, key patron leader of PAN. So, this is a political bargaining as well," another SOE executive said.
But where is the brawl?
"Actually, VP proposed other candidate for PGN but TPA picked Sutikno. As a result, there is on-going battle for other posts still vacant," the executive said.
The ugliest brawl is actually at PT Tambang Batubara Bukit Asam Tbk, the state-owned coal producer. TPA has yet to decide the executives and leaving the company in the hands of board of commissioners for almost one month now.
Similar situations have been emerged at other giant SOEs like PT Telkom Tbk and PT PLN. Look at how the board of commissioner of Telkom led by Tanri Abeng (key ally of VP) sent a letter to Sugiharto in late August asking for Arwin's replacement.

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