Wednesday, 27 September 2017 07:00

Controversy on Non-Standard Weapon Procurement

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Recently, there has been a rumor among Indonesians regarding large numbers of weapon procurement ordered by certain parties. Moreover, the ordered weapons are not in accordance with the standards used in Indonesia, both for the Indonesian Military (TNI) and the Indonesian Police. There are concerns that the thousands of weapons may be used for something that endangers the state security and resilience. Earlier, before some Indonesian Military (TNI) retired generals and former TNI commanders last week, the Indonesian Military Commander, General Gatot Nurmantyo said that there were thousands of weapons smuggling which are not for the Indonesian Military (TNI) and Indonesian Police. Later on, Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Wiranto in a press conference on Sunday 24 September confirmed that there were indeed 500 weapons purchase, not 5.000 as reported. He explained that this weapon is the procurement of National Intelligence Agency (BIN) and purchased from PT Pindad for intelligence school. Minister Wiranto added that the reason why the weapon is said to be smuggled or illegal is because it is not an Indonesian Military (TNI) standard. This is also why the National Intelligence Agency (BIN) does not need to ask permission to the Indonesian Military (TNI) Headquarters but to the Police Headquarters only. Minister Wiranto also stated that the issue of smuggling arms purchases occurred due to ‘incomplete inter-institution communication'.

Meanwhile, Director of Imparsial, an Indonesian NGO, Al Araf said that the statement of the Indonesian Military (TNI) Commander on smuggled weapons issue cannot be simplified as a mere miscommunication issue. Al Araf is of the opinion that this issue should be the President’s basic evaluation on the Indonesian Military (TNI) Commander. He assessed that such strategic information should be conveyed by the Indonesian Military directly to the President, not to the public. Apart from the issue on weapons smuggling, this incident also shows another side of Indonesia's strategic industry, PT PINDAD, which is capable of making weapons outside the context of diversity owned by the Indonesian Military (TNI) or Indonesian Police. The question is: is there a strict supervision of PT PINDAD related to its various strategic productions? This is important so that the issue on smuggled non-TNI and Police standard weapons will not happen again.




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