Indonesia president’s family tightens grip on stumbling ruling party

Updated 14 February 2013

Indonesia president’s family tightens grip on stumbling ruling party

JAKARTA: Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has turned to one of his sons to help him rescue the ruling party which opinion polls suggest faces crushing defeat in an election next year.
Late last week, Yudhoyono effectively ditched the chairman of the Democratic Party, who has become its latest member to be embroiled in a corruption scandal. Yudhoyono said he would take charge of the party.
“I will concentrate on performing my duties as secretary general of the Democratic Party,” the Kompas daily website quoted the son, Edhie Baskoro Yudhoyono, commonly called Ibas, as saying, adding he was stepping down as a member of Parliament.
The comments also follow some media criticism of the son for rarely turning up at Parliament.
The Democratic Party’s latest problems surround its chairman, Anas Urbaningrum, who has been linked to a graft case involving the construction of a sports stadium. A leaked document widely reported in the media said he had been named a suspect in the case by the powerful Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) but there has been no official confirmation.
Anas, who remains nominal party chairman, went on national television yesterday to sign an integrity pledge Yudhoyono told all party members to agree to as part of attempts to raise the party’s badly damaged reputation.
In December, Yudhoyono’s sports minister was forced to step down after being named as a suspect in a bribery investigation by the KPK.
Next year also sees a presidential election after Yudhoyono’s second and final term ends.
There is no clear front-runner to replace him and none of the known candidates appears to have much chance of winning without forming an alliance with another major political party.

Most of the leading political parties have at least one official, in some cases several, who has been the focus of the corruption agency’s investigations.
Indonesia has long been listed among the world’s most corrupt societies. Increasingly that has included its members of Parliament in a country which has had barely a decade of democracy.

Pakistan eliminated terrorism with monumental cost — Defense Minister

Updated 26 April 2018

Pakistan eliminated terrorism with monumental cost — Defense Minister

  • Beijing hosted the first SCO Defense Ministers meeting after the organization was expanded in 2017 and added India and Pakistan as full members
  • He said that presence of Daesh in Afghanistan is a source of insecurity for its neighbors

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Minister for Defense Khurram Dastgir Khan said that Pakistan has eliminated terrorism from its soil at a monumental cost — in the in blood of soldiers and citizens.
The minister made his remarks at the 15th Defense Ministers Meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Beijing.
He added that Pakistan had adopted a comprehensive national action plan to combat terrorism: “We have suffered economic losses in excess of US $120 billion (Rs 13,920 billion) in our war against terror,” he added.
It was the first assembly of SCO Defense Ministers since the organization expanded in 2017, adding India and Pakistan as full members.

Khan said the continuing turmoil in Afghanistan, including presence of ISIS (Daesh), was a source of insecurity for its neighbors and the entire region.

“Serious challenges facing the region include violent extremism, poverty, lack of trans-boundary water management, drug trafficking, refugees, human trafficking and border controls,” the minister said.

Khan acknowledged the existence of bilateral issues between SCO members, but asserted that these should “never be allowed to impede our collective work.” He encouraged his counterparts to face collective challenges with “courage, harmony and cooperation.”

The minister signed a communiqué with other participants offering support for the “Shanghai Spirit” of building a shared community with peace and stability, development and prosperity.

Defense ministers from the SCO member states including China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and India attended the meeting. The defense minister of Belarus attended as an observer.