Ade Safri Simanjuntak, Jakarta police’s director for special crime, affirmed Wednesday the existence of “sufficient evidence” warranting the identification of Firli Bahuri, the Chairman of Indonesia’s Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), as a suspect in an alleged extortion case involving the former Indonesian Minister of Agriculture, Syahrul Yasin Limpo.
The police disclosed that the charges against Bahuri include corruption offenses such as extortion, acceptance of gratuities or receiving gifts or promises related to his public position. Last month, authorities apprehended Limpo amid allegations of misappropriating over $800,000 in public funds. In a press conference held on Monday before being officially designated as a suspect, Bahuri asserted that he has “never engaged in extortion or bribery with anyone.”
The Indonesian president is legally required to suspend any KPK chief named as a criminal suspect. President Joko Widodo affirmed on Thursday his commitment to “respect the due legal process” when questioned about the allegations involving Bahuri. Ari Dwipayana, the coordinator of the president’s special staff, also stated that a preliminary presidential decree for the temporary removal of Bahuri from his position as Chairman of the Corruption Eradication Commission is “now in preparation.”
Indonesia is currently ranked 110 out of 180 countries on the Corruption Perception Index by Transparency International, an NGO focused on tracking government corruption globally.