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REFORMASI WEEKLY REVIEW
SUMMARY OVERVIEW
22 July 2016

Politics: Jakarta Governor Basuki Purnama (‘Ahok’) claimed in an interview that he remains perfectly relaxed about next year’s election – but failure next month to fulfill stringent eligibility requirements for an independent bid would render him vulnerable to political manipulation by parties (Page 2).

Electoral System: Weighty issues at stake in a forthcoming Bill on Elections include campaign financing, adjudicating electoral disputes, mechanisms for choosing legislators and, perhaps most significantly, rules for nominating presidential tickets (p. 5).

Justice: In the corruption case of a Supreme Court civil servant arrested in February, both the defendant and a witness admit to having arranged bribes for a justice (p. 6). An unofficial ‘international court’, arranged by notable legal system experts such as Todung Mulya Lubis, ruled that the violence in 1965 66 involved gross human rights abuses. Government officials promptly dismissed the court’s significance (p. 7).

Policy News: Constitutional Court Chief Justice Arief Hidayat said that hearings on the Tax Amnesty Law may commence next week, and he claimed that the process should be swift (p. 8). President Joko Widodo reiterated instructions to police and state prosecutors to cease “criminalizing policymaking”, lest officials remain fearful of taking decisions and implementing projects (p. 8). The president lobbied key governors to cut the property tax rate on real estate trusts – a sign that Widodo is earnest about following through on the implementation of his economic policy package (p. 8). The president intends to replace subsidized rice for the poor with a food voucher system next year (p. 9).

Appointments: The new police chief rehabilitated Com Gen Suhardi Alius, who backed anti corruption efforts in the past, to head the Counter Terrorism Agency (BNPT). The move signals that the chief, Gen Tito Karnavian, is prioritizing governance – which bodes well for legal certainty (p. 10).

Economics: The poverty rate declined marginally since 2015, to 10.9 percent, due partly to low inflation (p. 11).

Jakarta: Work to upgrade nine key interchanges, including a tunnel in Kuningan, should start by September (p. 13).

Security: Authorities eliminated Santoso, the most wanted terrorist (p. 14).

Reformasi Weekly Review provides timely, relevant and independent analysis on Indonesian political and policy news. Delivered electronically every Friday, Reformasi Weekly is written by Kevin O’Rourke, author of the book Reformasi. For subscription information please contact. Reformasi Weekly is a product of PT Reformasi Info Sastra.
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