Jakarta – Although deliberation by the panel of judges on the case of Akbar Tanjung only began yesterday, six organisation held a demonstration in front of the supreme court in relation to the case of [the embezzlement of] non-budgetary funds by the general chairperson of the Golkar Party on Tuesday February 3.
The six organisation which demonstrated at the supreme court began with the Golkar Youth Movement, then the Greater Jakarta Student Executive Council, the Indonesia University Student Action Front, the Youth and Student Front for Justice, the Greater Jakarta Student Action Network and finally demonstrators from the Indonesian Muslim Student Action Untied Action Front (KAMMI).
The last five student based organisations were forcefully dispersed by police because they did not have permission to hold an action at the supreme court building. In general they were only given an opportunity to give speeches of no more than 20 minutes then they had to leave. Only the action by the Golkar Youth Movement had permission to demonstrate.
According to the chairperson of KAMMI, Muhammad Hermawan Ibnu Nurdin, who was at the the action, they were demonstrating to remind the supreme court that as the highest institution of justice it must be neutral from intervention by existing political forces. “I [can] see that there is a huge amount of political pressure on the supreme court at the moment”, he said.
According to Nurdin, the supreme court must reject Akbar Tanjung’s case and declare him to be guilty, because two previous courts – the state court and the high court – have already been made it very clear that Akbar Tanjung is guilty and sentenced him to jail. “They decided that Akbar Tanjung is guilty based on existing evidence and facts”, he said.
Meanwhile, in a statement by the Greater Jakarta Student Action Network, they called on the supreme court to immediately issue a legal decision in relation to the case of Akbar Tanjung in accordance with the public’s sense of justice. They also called on the supreme court to enforce the law without being influenced by the intervention by certain interests.
Meanwhile the University of Indonesia Student Action Front demanded that the supreme court had down the heaviest possible sentence on Akbar Tanjung and called on the judges not to hesitate in carrying out their task of sentencing the corrupter.
The demands by the Greater Jakarta Student Executive Council were of the same tone, through their chairperson, Achmad Nur Hidayat, they called on the supreme court to keep the Akbar Tanjung’s case free of political intervention, and in the name of morality, that the supreme court convict Akbar Tanjung for what he has done. “We will be extremely disappointed if this institution (the supreme court) releases Akbar Tanjung”, he said.
According to plans, the participants who are part of these student organisation will return and hold demonstrations in front of the supreme court building on Wednesday January 4. They promised to bring even more demonstrators.
[Translated by James Balowski.]