Jakarta. The National Police has opened an investigation into allegations of corruption in the Social Security of the Indonesian Armed Forces, or Asabri, removing the cover of another possible scandal in a financial industry that is already plagued with corruption cases of billions of Dollars.
Earlier this week, the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Mahfud MD, said Asabri, who manages life insurance funds belonging to about one million Indonesian soldiers and police, allegedly embezzled the money under his care and lost between Rp 10 billion and Rp 16 billion ($ 730 million- $ 1.2 billion).
The losses are on par with those of another state life insurer under criminal investigation, Asuransi Jiwasraya, who reportedly lost 13.7 trillion rupees from the state chest.
The Office of the Attorney General decided this week that there was enough evidence of corruption in Jiwasraya to prosecute five suspects.
Now the police are approaching Asabri.
“I have ordered Kabareskrim to create a joint team [to investigate the insurer]”National Police Chief Idham Azis said Friday cited by Antara news agency.
The Kabareskrim is the head of the Criminal Investigation Unit of the National Police, Listyo Sigit Prabowo.
The joint team, Idham said, will begin the investigation to find evidence of alleged misappropriation of funds in Asabri.
“We are in the research verification stage. We are monitoring progress,” Idham said.
Minister Mahfud had begged the public to trust the police, instead of the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), with Asabri’s investigation.
“Because from 940,000 to 980,000 [Asabri customers], 600,000 are cops, “Mahfud said Thursday.
The National Police must feel a moral obligation to complete the investigation into Asabri, since it is the money of its officers that the insurer lost, according to Mahfud.
“In addition, according to the law, a case of corruption under the KPK investigation could also be investigated by the police or the prosecutor’s office. But a case that is being handled by the police or the prosecutor’s office also cannot be handled by the KPK, “said Mahfud. said.
Asabri denies the accusation
The CEO of Asabri, Sonny Widjaja, denied the accusation that the insurer improperly appropriated the insurance funds of its clients.
“I guarantee that the money is safe. It is not lost and there is no corruption,” Sonny said Thursday.
Sonny asked the public, especially Asabri’s clients, not to feel easily provoked by rumors of corruption.
“People should not be provoked by unverified news about Asabri. I insist, the rumors are not true,” said Sonny.
Sonny said he would take Asabri’s accusers to court if they persist with their accusations.