Prominent lawyer Todung Mulya Lubis showed up for questioning on Friday (22/12) as a witness in a prolonged graft probe into irregularities surrounding the disbursement of Bank Indonesia Liquidity Assistance, or BLBI, funds. (Reuters Photo/Darren Whiteside)

Committee to Recommend Three Candidates for New Constitutional Court Justice

BY :NOVI SETUNINGSIH

MARCH 30, 2017

Jakarta. The selection committee appointed to choose a new Constitutional Court judge said on Thursday (30/03) that it will submit three candidate recommendations to President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo next Monday to replace disgraced justice Patrialis Akbar.

Patrialis was sacked after he was nabbed in a sting operation by the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) earlier this year. He reportedly received nearly $160,000 in bribes related to a judicial review of a national law on animal farming and health.

The selection committee is led by former Constitutional Court justice Harjono and includes law experts Sukma Violetta, Todung Mulya Lubis, Ningrum Sirait and another former Constitutional Court justice, Maurarar Siahaan.

Todung said the team has narrowed its recommendations to three and will await President Jokowi's final decision.

"We will hand in all three names to the president on Monday," Todung said in Jakarta. "After we hand in the candidates' names, the president will pick one and an inauguration will follow shortly after."

Though the committee has not released the names of the three candidates, Todung says all three are considered to possess great integrity and honor.

The selection committee reportedly requested input and background checks for possible candidates from the Transaction Reports and Analysis Center (PPATK), KPK, Attorney General's Office, National Police and Judicial Commission.

At least 41 people registered to participate in the committee's selection process earlier this month. This includes Andalas University law expert Saldi Isra; agrarian expert Muhammad Yamin Lubis; former director general of law at the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights Wicipto Setiadi; and Mudji Estiningsih from the State Administrative Agency (LAN).

The Constitutional Court has been marred in recent years by the arrests of Patrialis and Akil Mochtar, who was sentenced to life in prison in 2015 in an unrelated bribery case.

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