No joint fact-finding team required in Novel Baswedan`s case: Police

"A TPGF is not needed," Brigadier General Rikwanto, a spokesman of the National Police (Polri), stated.
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The National Police has opined that there is no need to form a joint fact-finding team (TPGF) to handle the case of an acid attack on Novel Baswedan, the Corruption Eradication Commissions (KPKs) senior investigator.

"A TPGF is not needed," Brigadier General Rikwanto, a spokesman of the National Police (Polri), stated at the Police Headquarters, here, Monday.

The time frame to solve each case differs.

"There are cases that can be solved fast, while some others are rather slow, and there are also cases that take a very long time to solve," he said.

Despite suggestions to set up a TPGF, Rikwanto said the TPGF would not expedite investigations into the case. In fact, it could serve as a precedent that every case, in which the investigation process seems rather slow, needs to be handled by the TPGF, he added.

"The (establishment of a) TPGF should not become a routine thing. Later, anyone, who feels that investigation into his case is slow, will demand for the establishment of a TPGF. Hence, such a special right is not solely reserved for Novels case. Everyone has the same right. However, this (TPGF) will not solve the problem," he said.

The National Police does not intend to either slow down the investigation into the Baswedan case or lose focus in dealing with it, he remarked.

Currently, both the Jakarta Metro Jaya Police and the National Polices Crime Investigation Department are incessantly investigating the case, according to Rikwanto.

He, however, admitted that the investigation has failed to trace the attackers of Baswedan.

"It remains uncertain as to who the perpetrators are. We do not have strong evidence to name someone as a suspect," he stated.

He urged anyone with information on the attackers of Baswedan to report it to the Police or the KPK.

He confirmed that National Police Chief General Tito Karnavian will, in the near future, report to President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) about the investigation into the unsolved case.

Meanwhile, President Jokowi recently said he will discuss Baswedans case with Karnavian.

"Later, I will invite the Police chief. I will call him," President Jokowi stated in response to questions posed by the press regarding a suggestion to establish a TPGF to probe the case.

He said every case has to be dealt with in a clear and transparent manner.

"For sure, every case must be open and clear," Jokowi noted.

On April 11, 2017, Baswedan, a retired police officer, was fatally attacked while heading home after performing Fajr, or the Dawn prayer, at a mosque nearby when two motorcyclists hurled acid on his face that injured his eyes, particularly the left eye.

His attackers escaped and until now are still at large, while Baswedan is currently being treated in a Singapore hospital.

Baswedan has lost vision in the left eye and has to undergo a major surgery.(*)