House Ethics Council to Verify Alleged Freeport Shakedown Recording

House of Representatives Speaker Setya Novanto, standing, faces a House Ethics Council hearing for allegedly trying to extort miner Freeport Indonesia. (Antara Photo/Puspa Perwitasari)

By : Markus Junianto Sihaloho | on 9:11 PM November 20, 2015
Category : News, Politics

Jakarta. The House of Representatives' Ethics Council says it will verify the authenticity of a taped recording of a conversation between House Speaker Setya Novanto, Freeport Indonesia president director Maroef Sjamsoeddin and businessman M. Riza Chalid, which allegedly proves a massive shakedown attempt.

Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Sudirman Said has lodged a complaint with the council and submitted a recording of the conversation that is believed to support his claim that Setya, in a meeting in June with Maroef and Riza, sought to have a 20 percent stake in the company divested through him, on the pretext that the shares would go to President Joko Widodo and Vice President Jusuf Kalla.

Junimart Girsang, deputy chairman of the Ethics Council, said experts will examine the recording before a hearing on the case slated for Monday.

He added that the council would decide as soon as possible whether people would be summoned -- if necessary even the president himself.

Besides the Ethics Council probe, Setya is currently also facing a possible motion of no confidence, as legislators have said his alleged misconduct has disgraced the House.

The motion -- initiated by lawmakers from the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), the National Democratic (NasDem) Party, the People's Conscience (Hanura) Party and the National Awakening Party (PKB) -- will be submitted on Monday.

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