Police have dropped an investigation into an alleged campaign violation involving a key backer of Jakarta governor-elect Joko Widodo, saying the rival camp that reported the matter had no grounds for a case.
Sr. Comr. Rikwanto, the Jakarta Police spokesman, said on Friday that an order was issued on Tuesday for the dropping of a probe into television advertisements that aired on Aug. 27 and featured prominent political figure Prabowo Subianto, in his role as chairman of the Association of Indonesian Traditional Market Traders (APPSI), endorsing Joko.
The ad was reported to police by the camp of Fauzi Bowo, the incumbent whom Joko went on to defeat in the Sept. 20 poll, because it aired ahead of the official campaign period.
However, Rikwanto said police investigators had concluded that the APPSI, which paid for the ad, was in no way affiliated with Joko’s campaign team, hence the accusation by Fauzi’s team that his opponent had violated campaign rules was groundless.
“Fauzi’s team wanted charges pressed under the 2004 Regional Governance Law and the 2004 Electoral Campaigns Law, but those charges are inapplicable because the APPSI was not part of the campaign team,” he said.
“Similarly, their bid to bring charges against APPSI secretary-general Ngadiran did not meet the requirements.”
He added that police had questioned several witnesses in the case, including Ngadiran, the production company that made the ad, and electoral officials.
In addition to being the APPSI chairman, Prabowo is also the co-founder of the Great Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra), one of the two parties that backed Joko and his running mate, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama.