38 ex-graft convicts to run in Indonesia’s 2019 elections

By: Asia News Network, Inquirer.net September 23,2018 - 11:38 PM

JAKARTA — Voters, be mindful: of more than 200,000 candidates running for legislative seats at the regional level next year, 38 have been convicted of corruption.

After months of legal debate, the General Elections Commission (KPU) has decided that the 38 politicians who had challenged their disqualification at the Elections Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) would be on the ballots next April.

The poll body has chosen to abide by a Supreme Court’s ruling that annulled a KPU regulation to prohibit people convicted of graft, sexual assault and drug abuse from taking part in the election.

According to the KPU, 7,968 people are running for legislative seats at the House of Representatives, and 807 for the Regional Representatives Council (DPD). It did not release the total number of people running for seats on regional legislative councils (DPRD), but is believed to exceed 200,000.

According to the KPU, 12 ex-graft convicts are aiming for a spot in provincial councils, while 26 others are running for city and regional council seats.

Gerindra Party tops the list with six graft-tainted candidates, one of whom is Muhammad Taufik, who was sentenced to 18 months behind bars in 2004 in a graft case related to the procurement of election materials.

Taufik is running for a legislative seat in the Jakarta Council next year while also trying to get the Jakarta deputy gubernatorial post that was left vacant by Sandiaga Uno.

Meanwhile, three former graft convicts are on the list of DPD candidates, including former Aceh governor Abdullah Puteh, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison for corruption related to the procurement of two helicopters for the provincial administration in 2005.

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TAGS: General Elections Commission, Jakarta, KPU, Muhammad Taufik, Supreme Court

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