Jakarta. The state audit agency is probing all primary defense equipment procurement projects by the military, including the graft-tainted acquisition of an AgustaWestland helicopter, officials said on Thursday (12/10).
An internal investigation by the Indonesian Military (TNI) earlier this year found that the $55 million purchase of the Italian-made helicopter, originally intended for use by the president, resulted in the state losing Rp 220 billion ($16.5 million).
The current probe by the Supreme Audit Agency (BPK) follows a request by TNI commander Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo for a specific investigation into the procurement of the helicopter.
"We're the ones who know which ones need to be examined and which ones don't," said BPK official Agung Firman Sampurna, who insisted that his office would audit all the TNI's recent procurement projects.
"We are the ones who have the authority, and the competency is on us," he said.
Because "we're talking about national defense here," Agung said, there is a possibility that the BPK may not make the result of the audit public.
What the BPK calls an "examination with specific purposes" has been running for about two months and may conclude in another month at the earliest, BPK spokesman Yudi Ramdan Budiman said meanwhile.
"It depends on data availability and evidence," he explained.
Gen. Gatot announced in late May that three military officers had been named suspects in the joint investigation with the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) into alleged graft involving the purchase of the helicopter.