Jakarta. Indonesia's Constitutional Court on Thursday (08/02) rejected a plea to revoke the House of Representatives’ right of inquiry, or hak angket, which can be used to start investigations against the country's antigraft agency, the Corruption Eradication Agency or KPK.
The court's decision was made despite the dissenting opinions of four judges – Saldi Isra, I Dewa Gede Palguna, Suhartoyo and Maria Farida – out of the nine on the bench, BeritasSatu.com reported.
The House’s right of inquiry is granted by Indonesia's 2014 Law on Legislative Bodies. It can be used to kickstart investigations into a government body, in theory to make sure they act in the public interest.
But experts and rights groups have protested the procedure will only be used to attack and weaken the KPK, the country's spearhead in combating corruption.
"The KPK is an institution that is part of the country's executive power and a law enforcer against corruption.... However, the House of Representatives represents the Indonesian people and has the right to ask for accountability from the KPK on the implementation of its duty and authority," judge Manahan Sitompul said as he read out the court decision.
The plea to challenge the House’s right of inquiry against the KPK at the Constitutional Court was entered by the KPK's own staff with support from students and lecturers from Indonesian universities' law faculties (Forum Kajian Hukum Konstitusi) and the executive director of Lira Institute, Horas Naiborhu.
They believe the KPK is not part of the country's executive power but an independent body and thus cannot be the object of the House’s right of inquiry.