Former Army general Kivlan Zein, center, leads a rally in front of the offices of the Election Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) in Central Jakarta on Thursday. (Antara Photo/Aditya Pradana Putra)

Gov't Slaps Travel Ban on Kivlan Zein on Friday, Revokes It on Saturday


MAY 12, 2019

Jakarta. The immigration office issued a travel ban on Kivlan Zein, the former chief of staff of the Indonesian Army Strategic Command, or Kostrad, but revoked it a few hours later, a government official said.

Immigration Directorate spokesman Sam Fernando confirmed that the travel ban was issued against the retired major general on Friday but that it was revoked early Saturday morning.

The immigration office may issue or revoke travel bans at the request of law enforcement agencies.

"It's true, the travel ban was revoked this morning," Sam said, as quoted by Antara news agency on Saturday. He did not elaborate.

The police confirmed that a travel ban was issued against Kivlan at their request on Friday after he was reported to the police for treason and spreading fake news.

National Police spokesman Chief Comr. Asep Adi Saputra said investigators requested a travel ban because they believed Kivlan had plans to travel to Brunei via Batam, Riau Islands Province.

Another police spokesman, Insp. Gen. M. Iqbal, provided more detail.

"The reason [the travel ban was lifted] is because the passport of Mr. K.Z. will expire soon, so he will not be permitted to leave Indonesia or enter another country. That's the information from immigration. Then, investigators were informed that Mr. K.Z. was willing to cooperate and comply with his summons," Iqbal said, referring to Kivlan by his initials.

Kivlan's lawyer Pitra Romadoni condemned the travel ban as his client has never been named a suspect. 

Pitra also denied claims that Kivlan planned to depart for Brunei, adding that his client was ready for Monday's questioning by police.

The treason allegation against Kivlan emerged after he called for a popular uprising against the government if the result of the April 17 presidential election was not in favor of candidate pair Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno.

The General Elections Commission (KPU) is scheduled to announce the result of Indonesia's first simultaneous presidential and legislative elections on May 22.

An invitation encouraging people to join the "Constitutional Jihad" protest – with Kivlan's name on it – was widely shared on  WhatsApp over the past few days. He is also believed to have been provoking Prabowo-Sandi supporters to put pressure on the Election Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) and General Elections Commission (KPU) to disqualify Joko "Jokowi" Widodo and his running mate Ma'ruf Amin from the presidential race.

Prabowo has declared victory in last month's election on at least three occasions, claiming to have won 62 percent of the vote. But quick counts by reliable pollsters show Jokowi-Ma'ruf having won by an average of between 54 percent and 56 percent.

As of Saturday evening, with nearly 78 percent of the ballots tabulated in the real count, Jokowi-Ma'ruf had secured 56.3 percent of the vote against the 43.7 percent of Prabowo-Sandiaga.