Agus Rahmat – Indonesia Corruption Watch (ICW) has spoken out about the phenomena of former corruption convicts becoming active again in political parties after serving their sentences. ICW says this is not a new phenomenon in the world of politics.
ICW Coordinator Agus Sunaryanto revealed a number of names of people who were caught up in corruption cases and are now active again in political parties.
He cited names such as Andi Mallarangeng from the Democrat Party who was indicted in the Hambalang sports complex case and released from prison in 2017. Then there is Nazaruddin, also from the Democrat Party, who was indicted in two cases, namely the 4.6 billion rupiah bribery case involving the Wisma Atlet (Athletes Village) as well as gratification and money laundering.
The latest is former United Development Party (PPP) Chairperson Muhammad Romahurmuziy (Romy) who was indicted over receiving bribes for selling posts in the Ministry of Religious Affairs in 2019. After being released from prison, Romahurmuziy was appointed as chairperson of the PPP's Advisory Board.
"So (the phenomena of ex-corruptors becoming active again in political parties) is not just happening in the PPP. The Democrats are also like that, Nazaruddin and Andi Mallarangeng for example", Sunaryanto told journalists.
Sunaryanto suspects there is an internal problem in the political parties so that in the end they accept former corruption convicts rejoining the party.
He also gave a flashback of the actions by the political parties when their members are indicted in corruption cases. Sunaryanto said that the parties fall over themselves publicly in taking stern measures against corrupt members, such as dismissing them.
But these dismissals are just a political gimmick because party members can easily rejoin after they have served their sentences.
"I think there is a problem in the political parties. The political parties actually take good steps when [members] are declared suspects. Before, the Democrats immediately dismissed them [Nazaruddin and Mallarangeng], but then after they're released, they come back in again. This is simply a political gimmick", he concluded.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "ICW Sindir Eks Koruptor Masuk Partai Lagi: Seperti Gimmick Politik".]