Humphrey R. Djemat, center, the leading lawyer for one of two rivaling factions within the United Development Party (PPP), displays documents related to a lawsuit the PPP camp has filed against President Joko Widodo and several members of his administration. (Antara Photo/Rivan Awal Lingga)

PPP's Djan Faction Sues Government for Rp 1 Trillion


MARCH 15, 2016

Jakarta. A faction within the United Development Party, or PPP, is suing President Joko Widodo's administration for Rp 1 trillion ($75.58 billion) for refusing to recognize its chief as the Islamic-based party's legitimate leader.

The lawsuit, petitioned by the faction supporting Djan Faridz's claim for PPP chairmanship, was lodged on Tuesday (15/03) to the Central Jakarta District Court, naming the president, Coordinating Minister for Politics and Security Luhut Pandjaitan and Justice and Human Rights Minister Yasonna Laoly as defendants.

The PPP has been hit with a prolonged split that has lasted more than a year, with Djan and rival Muhammad Romahurmuziy both claiming to be the legitimate chairman of the party.

The government had earlier recognized Romahurmuziy, who supports Joko's administration, as PPP chairman but the Supreme Court recently squashed a government decree recognizing his reign.

In the absence of a legitimate leadership, Justice minister Yasonna issued a decree temporarily recognizing the reign of former chairman Suryadharma Ali until both factions can resolve their differences.

The plaintiff's lawyer, Humphrey Djemat, one of Djan's deputy chairmen, called the revival of Suryadharma's chairmanship a trick, pointing to the fact that the former chief was imprisoned for corruption during his time as a religious affairs minister. This effectively meant that Suryadharma's secretary general Romahurmuziy would be the de facto leader of the PPP.

“Several rights were violated,” Humphrey said. “Therefore, we are demanding that the government pay damages of Rp 1 trillion.”