Sunday, September 24, 2023

Police Prepare Hundreds of Personnel to Arrest Papua Governor

September 27, 2022 | 6:14 pm
Papua Governor Lukas Enembe (Beritasatu)
Papua Governor Lukas Enembe (Beritasatu)

Jayapura. The Papua Provincial Police said on Tuesday they are preparing special units comprising the equivalent of around 300 personnel to serve an arrest warrant for Papua Governor Lukas Enembe who is accused of corruption.

The Corruption Eradication Commission, or KPK, has sent two summonses since they announced corruption charges against the governor two weeks ago.

Lukas refused to go to the KPK headquarters in Jakarta for his deposition, citing medical reasons.

His request for interrogation at his home met a firm response from the KPK.


“We summon the suspect, not the other way around,” KPK spokesman Ali Fikri said.

Papua Police spokesman Chief Comr. Achmad Mustofa Kamal said in the provincial capital Jayapura “three companies of Mobile Brigade personnel” were deployed from neighboring Maluku and North Sulawesi to assist the KPK if needed.

"We are on standby if the KPK needs our help," he said.

The KPK has not disclosed in detail the charges against the two-term governor but it asked immigration authorities to ban him from traveling overseas and the anti-money laundering agency to analyze his financial records.

The Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis Center (PPATK) said they detected payments to overseas casinos totaling 55 million Singapore dollars (US$39 million) by Lukas since 2017.

Police Prepare Hundreds of Personnel to Arrest Papua Governor
The purported picture of Papua Governor Lukas Enembe playing a table game at a Malaysian casino is released by the MAKI on Sept. 25, 2022. (Beritasatu)

The central government also raised concern about the governor’s corrupt behavior with President Joko Widodo urging him to honor the KPK summons and saying “everyone is equal before the law”.

Chief Security Minister Mohammad Mahfud MD said the central government has channeled a total of Rp 1,000 trillion ($66 billion) in “autonomy funding” to Papua since 2001, about half of the amount was disbursed during Lukas’ term.

“More than Rp 500 trillion ($33 billion) has been disbursed during Lukas Enembe’s tenure but nothing happened: the people remain poor and the officials continue with their lavish lifestyle," Mahfud said during a visit to the East Java town of Malang on Friday.

Attorneys for Lukas didn’t deny the governor’s gambling habit but said on Monday he never used taxpayers’ money.

One of the attorneys said that Lukas, who skipped interrogations for health reasons, played gambling games “when he became ill” to get “a relaxing and refreshing charge”.

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