KPK´s Safe House, Maximum Protection for Witnesses

Thursday, 10 August 2017 , 18:00:00 WIB -

Questioning on a suspect by KPK. (ANTARA)

JAKARTA, GRES.NEWS – The anti-graft commission’s (KPK) safe house has become the latest hot topic after the Special Committee on Rights of Inquiry against KPK considers that the safe house existence is illegal as it’s not regulated in the Law No.30/2002 on KPK. Responding to the issue, Deputy Chairman of Victim and Witness Protection Agency (LPSK), Edwin Partogi Pasaribu, said that KPK’s safe house has a legal basis.

Edwin refers to Article 15 paragraph a Law No.30/2002 on KPK. The Article mentions that KPK is responsible for protecting witnesses or people who report a case or give testimonies about the happening corruption crime. "Despite this, the Law doesn’t mention clearly about the safe management conducted by KPK," Edwin said in a press release received by, Thursday (10/8).

However, he said that the Article in KPK Law mentions the protection includes ensuring the security of victims and witnesses by asking help from the police, change the identity of the case reporter, or evacuate the victims and witnesses. Edwin said that the matter is different with Law No.31/2014 on amendment of Law No.13/2006 on Victim and Witness Protection, where Article 12 A paragraph (1) point f to h mentions that LPSK has the authority to manage a safe house, move or relocate victims and witnesses to safer place, and secure or escort them.

Edwin explained that witnesses, victims, or case reporters who are protected in KPK’s safe house are under a threat that could endanger their life. "Safe house is a maximum protection for the protected parties. Therefore, there’s a consequence for the protected parties and other parties as their communication will be limited," he stated.

Edwin asserted that LPSK only relocates the witnesses to their safe house to prevent them from suffering violence or receiving threats that could affect the testimonies of the protected parties in the case that he knows or he’s reported. "Therefore, there are high standards applied in managing a safe house, different from general dwellings," he said.

The standards won’t be only used to the safe house building and equipment, but also include the security officers, skilled transporters, and the location that’s easy to be accessed in an emergency situation. In some cases, LPSK protects witnesses and whistleblowers whose case is being investigated by KPK.

"Regarding safe house management, security, comfort, and secrecy become the main factors. If the existence of the safe house known by other parties, the place can’t be used as a safe house anymore," Edwin said. (mag)