Secretary-General Talks Corruption from State Administrative Perspective

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Monday, February 22, 2021 | 12:33 WIB

Secretary-General M. Guntur Hamzah speaking at a webinar by Brawijaya University’s Law Faculty, Monday (22/2/2021) from the Constitutional Court. Photo by Humas MK/Ifa.

JAKARTA, Public Relations of the Constitutional Court—Corruption must be countered with the spirit of upholding the principles of a rule of law, said Secretary-General of the Constitutional Court M. Guntur Hamzah when speaking at a webinar on “Corruption and Losses in State Administration for the Law Students of Brawijaya University.” The virtual event took place on Monday, February 22, 2021, followed by 300 participants.

“[That is] because corruption eradication must be based on law. The law defines what constitutes acts of corruption,” Guntur said from his office in the Constitutional Court through Zoom.

In his presentation entitled “Corruption and State Losses from the Perspective of State Administrative Law,” Guntur explained that corruption is a crime that closely contributes to state losses. He said that Law No. 31 of 1999 in conjunction with Law No. 20 of 2001 defines acts of corruption as an unlawful act that could lead to losses in the state finances or economy, which is meant to enrich oneself or others.

According to Guntur, we have to understand two things related to corruption. First, acts that are against the law. Second, mens rea or acts with the underlying motive of self-profit or for one’s position. “An act constitutes corruption when there is a violation of the law and there is a motive of profit, not only for the self or the group,” he said.

Guntur added that the criteria for the criminal acts of corruption, as regulated by Law No. 31 of 1999 in conjunction with Law No. 20 of 2001, are very broad. Consequently, many state administrative decisions by state administrative officials are then said to be acts of corruption in the future due to evidence that they cause losses to state finances or economy.

Motive as a Criterion

Guntur also revealed that corruption in the use of state budget can be seen from its unlawfulness and motive. “When [both criteria are met], although [the act] doesn’t break any rules, it constitutes corruption,” he said.

He then explained three criteria of motive. First, whether a budget has been provided for an activity or program. Second, whether the activity or program violates statutory laws or not. Third, whether it is done cleanly. “Clean means clean in terms of intention, thoughts, behavior, and acts. Such cleanliness can be a basis to declare an official not abusing their authority,” he said.

Guntur believes state administrative officials must be given guidelines to avoid authority abuse. Law No. 30 of 2014 stresses the importance of complying with state administrative principles. “If [an official] has used their authority well and comply with state administrative principles, there will be no room for law enforcement officials to accuse them of corruption,” he explained.

Constitutional Court Decisions

Guntur explained that the Constitutional Court has passed several decisions in relation to the criminal acts of corruption. He said that overtime, the definition of state financial losses in relation to the criminal acts of corruption in the Constitutional Court’s decisions has changed. In the Decision No. 003/PUU-IV/2006, state loss is a formal crime, which is an offense that has been completed by committing an action that is prohibited and punishable by law, which means that the action is oriented to the exclusion of the consequences. Meanwhile, in the Decision No. 5/PUU-XIV/2016, the Court defined it as a material crime.

He also urged the student participants to live cleanly and avoid acts of corruption. Also speaking at the webinar were Brawijaya University Law Faculty lecturers, Istislam and AAA. Nanda Saraswati.

Writer: Lulu Anjarsari

Translator: Yuniar Widiastuti
Editor: NL

Translation uploaded on 02/22/2021 15:06 WIB

Disclaimer: The original version of the news is in Indonesian. In case of any differences between the English and the Indonesian version, the Indonesian version will prevail.