Amid ongoing strains between the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) and the National Police involving the recall of 20 temporary KPK investigators by police, the commission has hired 28 National Police investigators as their own permanent employees.
“The 28 [investigators] have received decision letters [from the KPK] leader,” the KPK’s deputy chairman, Busyro Muqoddas, said on Thursday. “[We] informed the National Police yesterday afternoon.”
Busyro said the move did not breach any existing regulations.
“This is indeed according to regulation to appoint our own investigators,” Busyro said. “So legal enforcers should acknowledge the legality.”
Under a 2005 government regulation addressing the management of human resources at the KPK, the antigraft body is allowed to hire employees from other institutions as permanent KPK staff.
However, Busyro said the KPK would still have to work out the logistics of permanently withdrawing the 28 officers from the National Police. Earlier this week, the National Police highlighted the fact that officers attempting to leave the force were potentially in violation of their contractual commitments to the nation’s law enforcement body.
In the past, some KPK investigators have been “loaned” from the National Police. During the tense saga that has unfolded between the two institutions over an investigation into a driving simulator procurement scandal, which has seen several police generals fingered by the KPK as suspects, the National Police decided to recall 20 of its investigators.
The KPK has warned that the sudden withdrawal would hamper its investigative capacity in the simulator case and others.
Fifteen of the 20 officers have returned to the National Police, while five said they wanted to work with the KPK instead. Busyro said that the five might be permanently employed with the KPK, but he would not say whether they are part of the 28 investigators hired this week.