KPK: House Needs to Watch for Misuse of ‘Aspiration Funds’
Jakarta. The Corruption Eradication Commission, or KPK, has called on the House of Representatives to ensure that the controversial “aspiration funds” that have been proposed by legislators are not misappropriated.
The funds, which would see every lawmaker receive Rp 20 billion ($1.5 million) to spend on development projects in their respective constituencies, should be prioritized for less developed regions and used in coordination with other government programs, according to the KPK.
“We hope the House of Representatives will move forward carefully on this matter and keep in mind the development imbalance throughout the country,” KPK deputy chairman Zulkarnaen said after meeting with House leaders on Tuesday.
“Synchronizing with other government programs is another point to bear in mind.”
Indonesia’s antigraft agency says it will keep a close eye on disbursement of the funds.
“We are prepared to work with the regional governments to make sure these aspiration funds are not misdirected,” Zulkarnaen said.
Legislators are pushing the government to include Rp 11.2 trillion in funds, which they are calling the “Electoral Region Development Fund” or UP2DP, in next year’s state budget.
The proposed fund is to be distributed among all 560 House members and used for any development project of their choosing in their respective electoral districts. A House team working on the details of the plan says there will be “no special supervision” of the use of the funds.
However, it is still unclear whether the proposed policy will get to the final deliberation stage in the House. Currently, the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), the People’s Conscience Party (Hanura) and the National Democrat Party (NasDem) have voiced opposition to the proposal.
President Joko Widodo has remained relatively quiet on the issue.
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