Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court: the Constitutional Court is One Hundred Percent Clean

Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court (the Court), Moh. Mahfud MD accompanied by the Deputy Chief Justice of the Court, Achmad Sodiki when holding a press conference, Tuesday (19/10), at the Constitutional Court’s Building.

Jakarta, MKOnline - “Until October 19, 2010, 12.36 WIB, I declare that the Constitutional Court is one hundred percent clean.” This expressive statement was made by the Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court (the Court), Moh. Mahfud MD when holding a press conference, Tuesday (19/10), at the Constitutional Court’s Building. The press conference which was also attended by seven constitutional justices along with the Secretary General of the Constitutional Court, Janedjri M. Gaffar was held as a response to a number of issues related to the alleged existence of legal and case mafia at the Court.

“I challenge anyone stating that there were constitutional justices and employees of the Constitutional Court involved in the case mafia practice to come here (to the Court, red.) and prove it directly. I will pay anyone who is able to give me the proof of such indication for the transportation and accommodation costs,” challenged Mahfud.

Mahfud admitted that many legal/case mafia issues rose to surface particularly due to the overflowing cases of electoral disputes handled by the Court since last May 2010. According to Mahfud, out of 246 Regional Head Elections held on 2010, as many as 198 regional head elections were brought to the Court. “Only 38 regional head elections were not brought  to the Court, such as the regional head elections in DIY, Solo, Blitar and a number of other regions. However, almost all regional head elections outside Java Island were brought to the Court. These regional head election disputes are prone to the case mafia issues. Therefore it is necessary for the Court to verify such issues,” Mahfud said.

According to Mahfud, the Court has conducted an internal investigation to prove the validity of these issues. “There is an allegation of case/legal mafia at the Court which by definition, includes the official element of the Constitutional Court, such as the constitutional justices and registrars. We have conducted an investigation and indeed, no indication leads to such allegation,” Mahfud said.

Mahfud thought it is necessary to clarify these increasingly apparent issues because in his opinion if these issues were not immediately addressed,  they could become propaganda the public would believe in. “They were like communism. It was wrong, but since no one argues about it, people eventually believe that it was true,” Mahfud said.

In addition to that, Mahfud explained that there were many Petitioners who did not have a clear understanding of how to bring a case to the Court so that they were often got into the trap of irresponsible parties. For example, Mahfud added, a case petitioner from Teluk Bintuni called him when he was about to register his case to the Court. “’Sir, I am on the ground floor of the Court building. Your staff asked for Rp15 million for case registration’ the man said. I told him to come up and bring the staff asking for the money. However, 15 minutes later, the Petitioner called me again and he said that the person asking him for money has escaped. It turned out he was not the Court’s employee, but rather a man dressed in the Court’s staff uniform,” explained Mahfud.

Mahfud said that therefore, the Petitioner is expected to be more cautious. “These rumors were probably spread by those losing (the case, red.) or people trying to get advantage from the disputing parties at the Court,” said Mahfud. (Lulu Anjarsari/mh)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 | 14:38 WIB 247