Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Inter-agency cooperation sought to prevent graft cases like PT Timah

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Gusty da Costa

Journalist

Editor

Interview

Cooperation among government’s agencies and ministries is needed to prevent corruption cases, such as the alleged corruption at PT Timah which has incurred US$ 13.6 billion in State losses based on calculation of an IPB University expert. 

Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources (ESDM) Arifin Tasrif said on Friday, April 5, 2024, that the ESDM ministry only handled the administrative affairs of mining licenses, but should go deeper with law enforcement against any violation. 

Arifin admitted that there is a plan to establish a special director general for law enforcement at the ESDM ministry to handle such kind of graft cases in mining and energy sectors.

“But that cannot be done, because the law enforcement director general is not in existence as yet,” he said. 

Arifin said the government has SIMBARA application, which was built through the integration of the Ministry of Finance, the ESDM Ministry, the Ministry of Trade, the Ministry of Transportation, and Bank Indonesia. It is an application for monitoring Non-Tax State Revenue (PNBP) and Mineral and Coal (Minerba) trading system. This application is also for monitoring a series of Minerba governance processes from upstream to downstream, including the fulfilment of payment obligations and clearance processes at the port.

“So far, SIMBARA can only accomodate coals, but it will be used to input data on nickel, tins and other minerals that we would know where the minerals have come from,” Arifin said. 

Since the handover of permit issuance authority from regional goverment to central government, Arifin said the ministry has improved many aspects related to data and bureaucracy.

“We have to make them perfect, so in the future the governance can be improved,” he said.  

Citing the current prosecution into PT Timah graft case, Arifin said his ministry did not calculate state losses from the corruption case as it is within the authority of the Supreme Audit Agency (BPK).

“It is the Supreme Audit Agency which has the right to calculate the losses,” he said. 

Several people have been named suspects in the graft case at PT Timah. The suspects had created dummy companies to accommodate the collection of illegally mined tin ore from PT Timah’s Mining Business Permit (IUP). These dummy companies were controlled by a suspect, identified as MBG. The tin ore produced by MBG was obtained from PT Timah with the company’s approval and then sold back to PT Timah. The tin ore obtained from these miners was then sent to smelter. 

The graft case in PT Timah is considerably huge as the financial losses caused by the suspects exceed those of other corruption cases, such as the PT ASABRI and Duta Palma cases. Furthermore, the illegal tin mining activities in the Bangka Belitung Islands Province resulted in environmental damage.

The suspects are charged under Articles 2 and 3 of Law No. 31/1999 on Corruption Eradication, as amended by Law No. 20/2001, as well as Article 55(1) of the Criminal Code.

Gusty da Costa

Journalist

 

Editor

 

Interview

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