News / Asia

Indonesia Claims Gains in Fight Against Corruption

Andy Lala
— Indonesian officials say their country has made significant progress in cracking down on corruption over the past three years.

Officials Monday announced that the battle against corruption has increased both in terms of quantity and quality, with hundreds of millions of dollars being seized since 2011. The Indonesian Corruption Eradication Commission says it seized nearly $100 million from corruption crimes in 2013, up significantly from 2012.

Indonesian Attorney General Basrief Arief told VOA that his office handled 1,696 corruption cases in 2013, up from 833 in 2012.

“For 2012, we saved over $20 million from corruption. We more than quadrupled that amount in 2013 to over $91 million, an increase of almost 80%. Most of the lost public money was due to corruption in the taxation sector, including customs," said Arief.

The Indonesia Central Statistics Agency has launched a pilot project called Integrity Zone [ZI] to combat corruption.

It requires an agency or a ministry to implement 20 indicators set by law, including compliance with accountability, implementing a whistle blower system, public disclosure and anti-corruption education activities.

Chief of the Central Bureau of Statistics, Suryamin, said there are safeguards in place to ensure honest reporting. “I can say that data manipulation does not occur in BPS. We issued a stern warning that whoever is involved in data manipulation will be subject to severe sanctions, up to firing. We have also assigned  a supervisory team for each step of statistical activities."

An institution will receive the ZI status if it shows commitment in promoting clean and efficient bureaucracy.

The anti-graft group Transparency International ranks Indonesia 114 out of 177 countries in terms of its comparative rates of corruption.

This report was produced in collaboration with the VOA Indonesian service.

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