Open Letter : Request for Cancellation of KPK Officers Dismissal

Jakarta, 15 June 2021

Ir. H. Joko Widodo
President of the Republic of Indonesia
Ministry of State Secretariat
Jl. Veteran No. 17-18
Central Jakarta, DKI Jakarta
Indonesia 10110

Subject: Request for Cancellation of KPK Officers Dismissal

Your Excellency Mr. President Widodo,

Hereby, Amnesty International Indonesia, Transparency International Indonesia, and Greenpeace Indonesia would like to call for the President’s attention regarding the decision of Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) ‘s commission chairman to dismiss 51 of the 75 employees for failing to pass the National Insight Test (TWK) during the process of changing status to State Civil Apparatus (ASN). We would like to plead that Your Excellency annuls the decision so that it does not become a violation of human rights and the principles of good governance.

Based on the information we have reviewed, the dismissal based on National Insight Test has no legal basis and violates the principles of good governance. The National Insight Test is only regulated by the Corruption Eradication Commission’s internal regulations, namely Commission Regulation Number 1/2021 concerning Procedures for Transferring the Status of KPK Employees to State Civil Apparatus Employees (ASN). There is no law that regulates The National Insight Test as a prerequisite for transitioning the status of KPK employees from being independent to become part of the government (ASN). During the socialization of the status transition held on February 17th, 2021, the commission’s chairman, Police Com. Gen. Firli Bahuri, and other commissioners did not openly explain both the process and the substance of the National Insight Test – even the consequences of not passing the test.

The information we reviewed also explained the questions asked in the National Insight Test were related to sensitive and personal issues, such as religious beliefs, political and ideological matters – prayer procedures, greetings for different religious celebrations, religious sects, the use of hijab, to their views on the aspiration of Caliphate from the organizations such as Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia (HTI). Furthermore, female employees were questioned about personal affairs that violated privacy rights and contained sexual harassment, such as “do you have any boyfriend?”, “what do you do with your boyfriend?”, “Why do you not get married?”, “do you still have sexual desires?” to the question “what is your opinion about LGBTI?”

Your Excellency Mr. President,
The overall questions and materials have no relation with the employees’ competency, integrity, and dedication in a nutshell. Otherwise, we should suspect that the employees who failed the National Insight Test have higher competencies and integrity.

Suppose Your Excellency Mr. President to review the names of employees who failed to pass the test. In that case, you will find the name of KPK employees who have been involved in eradicating corruption, investigating power and authority abused for many years that are detrimental for our country and resulted in the failure of state services for the people’s rights.

Your Excellency Mr. President,
We suspected systematic discrimination, violations of workers, civil and political rights of KPK employees, which are actually ensured and protected by national and international laws.

First, the decision of Constitutional Court Number 70/PUU-XVII/2019 regarding the judicial review of Law No. 19/2019 concerning the KPK, which emphasized that the transition of State Civil Apparatus (ASN) should not harm the rights of KPK employees to be appointed as a State Civil Apparatus (ASN) for any reason.

Second, Article 28D verse (2) of the 1945 Constitution and Article 38 verse (2) of Law No. 39/1999 regarding Human Rights guarantees the rights of KPK employees to receive fair and proper treatment and the rights to fair employment conditions.

Third, Article 281 verse (2) of the 1945 Constitution and Article 25 of International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – ratified by Indonesia through Law No. 11/2005—regulates that discrimination of workers based on personal thoughts and beliefs violates the right to freedom of thought, conscience, religion, and belief.

Fourth, Article 2 and 7 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights even guarantees equal opportunities for everyone to be promoted, recruited, and dismissed without discrimination and consideration of anything other than seniority and ability

Fifth, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, which Indonesia ratified through Law No. 7/1984, prohibits all forms of discrimination based on differences in gender, sexual orientation, or other identities.

Your Excellency Mr. President,
Amnesty International Indonesia, Transparency International Indonesia, and Greenpeace Indonesia would like to remind you that the weakening of the KPK will impact the fulfillment of people’s rights, especially because corruption occurs in various sectors and results in human rights violations.

Corruption in the judiciary sector has weakened the rights of people to legal protection, while corruption that occurs in the sector of environment and natural resources has led to evictions and criminalization of indigenous people who fight for their land rights. Additionally, corruption in the environmental sector has also caused massive damage and disasters, which caused many casualties and economic losses, both for the community and the state. Meanwhile, the funds’ embezzlement related to the community’s economic and social rights fulfillment, including social assistance, hinders the distribution of basic needs for those who do not have access to their ability and capability.

Related to those matters, we urge the President of the Republic of Indonesia to:

  • Annul the dismissal of 51 KPK employees who failed to pass the National Insight Test;
  • Ensure that the assessment of employee status transition to State Civil Apparatus (ASN) or other assessments related to workers in government agencies and institutions is based on merit system/ability/competency and without any form of discrimination;
  • Ensure the prevention of the worker rights and other human rights violations in all government agencies and other institutions in Indonesia;
  • Ensure the security and law protection to the employees who file an objection to the dismissal and ordered the Chief of National Police to investigate all forms of terrors, such as WhatsApp/Telegram account hacking and other kinds of intimidation.

Thank you for Your Excellency’s attention and cooperation
Sincerely Yours

Usman Hamid
Executive Director of Amnesty International Indonesia

Leonard Simanjuntak
Country Director of Greenpeace Indonesia

Danang Widoyoko
Secretary General of Transparency International Indonesia

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