08 July 2010

Beating Activists in Indonesia...

Some things seem destined to never change. The fact that Indonesia seemingly does not take this kind of violence and brutality seriously only serves to embolden the perpetrators into believing that they can act with immunity and impunity. The Munir case remains unresolved; unresolved to any satisfaction to those who have suffered directly and to the great majority of Indonesians who suffer indirectly because of the president's, the government's, and law enforcement's desire not to pursue the case seriously.

This lack of action can be directly linked, at least in my humble opinion, to the recent brutal bashing and stabbing of Tama Satrya Langkun of Indonesian Corruption watch. Langkun is an investigator with ICW and has been prominent in the uncovering of alleged police corruption, particularly the publicising of some rather large deposits into the personal bank accounts of Indonesian police officers. Langkun was stabbed and beaten in a vicious attack in Duren Tiga in South Jakarta. He was riding a motorcycle with a colleague. The attack occurred at 3.45am. He is reportedly in a stable condition in a local hospital.

This was clearly not a robbery but rather a calculated attack against an activist. Nothing was stolen. In fact, the perpetrators revisited the scene of the crime after the attack to return Langkun's motorcycle helmet, which had been taken.

Indonesia claims to be a democracy where the rule of law prevails. This would be much easier to believe if the perpetrators of assassinations, such as that of Munir, and the political violence evidenced in this most recent attack were pursued and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Indonesia might be a democracy, but it is a democracy where the 'old ways' continue to be tolerated and seemingly encouraged through the lack of action taken by the powers that be.

Maybe it is time for all Indonesians to take a stand and demand something more than lip-service to the ideal of good governance, clean governance, democracy, and human rights from their fellow Indonesians in government and law enforcement.

It could be a long wait.

The photo was sourced from The Jakarta Globe via Facebook.


sahidishere said...

duren tiga was just next to my dorm. but I didnt know about this issues until u posted it. thanks

Rob Baiton said...

@ Sahidishere...

Well, it happened early in the morning. Although, that said, it has been in the Indonesian and English language press today.