VP Jusuf Kalla Denies Legal Aid Team Aimed to Target Opposition



Mahinda Arkiyasa

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  • TEMPO.CO, JakartaVice President Jusuf Kalla asserted that there was nothing wrong in the formation of the Legal Aid Team initiated by Coordinating Minister for Politics, Legal, Security Affairs Wiranto. Kalla denied the team was established to arrest figures from the opposition party.

    "I think that opposition in Indonesia is common, and it's allowed by the law. The Constitution Law also allows people to express an opinion. So a person is examined not because he/she is the opposition," said Kalla at his office on Monday, May 13, 2019.

    Questions regarding the establishment of Legal Aid Team emerged after the police took actions against several opposition figures, such as the naming of Bachtiar Nasir as suspect in the alleged money laundering case, Eggi Sudjana for allegedly calling for treason, until the investigation towards Kivlan Zein also for alleged treason.

    Kalla argued that the law enforcer's move in handling the case was based on the procedures, not because they were the opposition. "So they are perhaps investigated due to their acts or events," he said.

    According to him, the assistance team did not involve in the law enforcement process carried out by law enforcers. The team was only tasked to provide a recommendation as a basis to prosecute a case. "It's similar to an expert witness in a trial," Jusuf Kalla underlined.

    Coordinating Minister Wiranto established Legal Aid Team after the 2019 general election in a bid to prevent efforts in delegitimizing the elections and the results. The team consisted of 24 people from law experts and national police officials is tasked to study words, thoughts, and actions committed by a person or figure that allegedly violated the law.